Hi, I'm Erica Lee from Los Angeles, California. I am majoring in Sports Management and minoring in Media Culture & Communications.
I remember having an intellectual experience last summer. I annually go on missionary trips with my home church, and last summer we were able to travel abroad to Vietnam. My grandma, an avid volunteer and attendee of these missionary trips came along as well. I had become friends with a teenage girl who lived in the village we were staying at, and she was an only child living with her grandma. One night, my grandma and I were invited to eat dinner with them, and it didn't take long for both grandmas' to share their pasts and memories as youths (it was a little difficult trying to decipher their broken English, but we managed). After hours of talking about their individual pasts, it hit me that there was a common theme in my grandma's stories and the Vietnamese girl's grandma. Both experienced and endured life at war. My grandmother shared memories of the Korean War, while she shared recollections of the Vietnamese War. It was amazing to hear these stories from people who actually witnessed events from these dark times. Furthermore, it made me realize that the most different of people can connect and sort of heal each other from the darkest times of their lives. I knew this had a therapeutic effect over both of them, and it was an incredible moment to witness.