If you like what you read here, please consider making a donation to DVAN via Intersection for the Arts.
"We had ancestors who were food advisors and cooks for royal families in Central and Southern Vietnam. After the Vietnam War, it was harder to hold onto our treasured recipes. As a first-generation American, I want to ensure our family’s rich history and long-lasting love for Vietnamese food will still be celebrated by generations of Vietnamese people throughout the world."
While switching between my identities as Loan the Vietnamese refugee and Kim the American professional has sometimes been an emotionally draining, isolating experience, I have grown to become creative, resourceful, resilient, and empathetic as a result of navigating the in-between.
To my fourteen-year-old self, Years ago, when we first came to the U.S., remember how Mom used to take you with her to the houses she cleaned? You’d sit in the kitchens of these houses crammed full of wide empty spaces, feet dangling, too scared to touch anything in case you left a mark.