The main purpose of going to Ban Keun this time was to pay respect to my great grandmother. She was a very special person to me next to my grandmother. Living in the US was not easy for me and I had a dream of going back to Laos to visit my great grandmother and my grandmother in 2000. Sadly they both passed away in 1998 and 1999.

After their departure I never thought I had anything or anyone left in Laos to go back to until I found out about my grand papa and his passing in 2006. When I found out there was still grand mama for me I went to Laos in 2007 to reconnect with my long lost relatives (some I never knew existed before).

My parents were divorced when I was a baby so I didn’t have much connection to my biological father’s family. The only ties and connects I have and my entire identity is based on my great grandparents and my grandmother. No matter how tough it was for me living in the US and adjusting to the new life, I studied hard and worked hard as a teenager saving up for a trip to Laos. I wanted my great grandmother and my grandmother to be proud of me, of who I had become. They were always proud of me and I always felt so much love from them.

My dream of visiting my great grandmother and my grandmother never came true but I know they are happy wherever they are at the moment. I dream of them often and they talk to me as if they are still alive in my dream. It sounds crazy but that gives me peace and comfort to be able to say all the things I want to say to them in real life but never had a chance to.