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I grew up with bomb that drop in distant, “S-z-z-z-z-z” of rocket shooting by. The house shake from vibration of the bomb drop. Became part of me.

When I come to the United State I go crazy and don’t know why. It not that I scream, yell, or make noise to disturb my neighbor. But inside it’s quiet. So peaceful it make me look around and say, “Something is wrong here.”  It not normal. I don’t hear a sound. Don’t feel shaky ground on my house. If I open my curtain I look across my neighbor house. Doors shut.

In Vietnam I will sit in my house, see my neighbor walk through the front door, the living room, across the bedroom, walk through my kitchen, and out the kitchen door to another neighbor house.

Passing through, my neighbor.  In this country you close the door.

Come see your neighbor you call and say, “Can I come over and see you?”

Not in Vietnam. 

Not hearing  noise, it make me insecure. Afraid.  I get worry. On edge.

In Vietnam from the age of thirteen every day I take pill to get stone. Numb.  That another way I knew how to survive. Over here, every day the silence. Every day I don’t know what tomorrow is. I’m gonna be alive. Nobody gonna shoot at me. This country no flying bullet, bomb dropping. I’m not gonna die from that.

But I’m afraid. Shaking. Couldn’t breathe.  

Craziness inside. I cannot turn around and say to my sisters, “I’m scare.”  Or to my friend, neighbor, or stranger, “What going on?” I don’t have anyone.

I have my one-year-old son. He scare too because I scare.




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