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‘Grief Is Like the Ocean’

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My father died of cancer in June of 2020, a few months into the COVID-19 pandemic. At first he was diagnosed with a chronic, but not fatal, inflammatory arthritis that affects the spine and large joints. But after his condition continued to deteriorate, a trip back to the hospital revealed that he had metastatic brain […]

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Moving Forward On My Own 

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When I was 6, my father took my two brothers and me to New York’s famous Far Rockaway beach. Humongous waves slammed on us, and we were fascinated by our first experience on American sand. I didn’t know how to swim, so I clung to the safety that the shallow water provided. Apparently not safe […]

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Rejecting My Role Model

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I was a daddy’s girl. In elementary school, whenever someone asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I said, “I want to be like my dad.” He worked hard, and he was my role model.  He didn’t tell me or my siblings about his childhood. Growing up, my aunt, my dad’s younger […]

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The Price of a Soda

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It’s quiet in the house and my sister and I are sound asleep. There’s a blue tint coming in from the window; this morning light rests over our eyelids and slowly wakes us from our dreams. We share a bed, and when she starts moving around I begin gaining consciousness. Shortly after, the strong but […]

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