99 ~ the Anniversary Post

Post100My, how times have changed.

~

This marks my 266th consecutive post, with only 99 more left to go before the year ends. Can’t believe it’s gotten this far. So here’s 10 history facts about the girl behind the blog.

1) I was born in a Thailand refugee camp.

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2) My father worked for the US Embassy after fleeing his home country due to the Khmer Rouge. My mother and father watched the genocide of their own people and they met in the camp. After a few years, my father got us papers to come to the United States.

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3) My birth name is Christina. I changed it to Brittany when we became citizens of the US. This photo was part of the documents for my immigration papers.

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4) My mum is Arab and Cambodian, my father is Chinese and Vietnamese.

5) My grandmother (mother’s side) was Muslim (converted to Christianity), but she still does not eat pork. During Thanksgiving, she yells at us children if we try to eat a slice of ham so my mother also makes turkey. ^_^

6) My last name isn’t my dad’s real last name. I don’t even know what it is honestly, he just took the name of the family he was living with at the time. Most of his family members were killed in the genocide. This is why history is so important to me – I don’t know much about mine.

7) While my father was off galavanting as a pastor in Texas (switching from Witchcraft to Christianity), my mother would always make clothes for me from leftover material of the sweat shop she worked at in California. I hated it at the time because she always made me dresses and I looked like a window curtain, but I appreciate it now.

8) My love for music started at an early age. I was trained as a classic pianist and had a singing coach under the direction of Stephan Bullard, the music conductor of the International Children’s Choir. He was a kind man that believed that money should not be a factor in teaching children to play music. I also used to play the electric bass – not my idea, but my fathers.

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9) I have an unhealthy obsession with teddy bears. My mum always made sure I had plenty of them from the Goodwill or donations from the church. I still carry this habit with me, if you have seen all my teddy posts. I have about 30-ish scattered about my apartment.

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10) My love for adventure is due in part to my family. A favorite memory of mine: Climbing Dunn’s River Falls, a 180 ft tall waterfall in Jamaica with my mum and dad.

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So there you have it. 10 facts to commemorate post #100 on the countdown.

81 thoughts on “99 ~ the Anniversary Post

  1. Fascinating and at the same time tragic family history. But at least your alive! So it means you can write and we can read, and now I see where your fascination of climbing comes from. Actually what a nice hobby to have. You said you changed, Jesus..you become american, you become beautiful, and even your eyes changed colour!!!That´s freaky. I have to get the U.S citizenship. I´ll have healthy hobbies, be a better writer and look like Brad pit. Only in America do you have those chances.
    I have a question, since I lived in California(San Francisco) I know there is a lot of Chinese, Japanese, and I did go to class with some guy who wasn´t neither of both but also from that part of the world, it´s a melting pot I barely could keep up with all the nationalities. Where you from? O, I´m Italian-American, and you? O, I´Japanese-American.
    The question, is there a lot, of Cambodia population in California? And if so where? Just curious.

    • LOL, my eyes didn’t change color – my eyesight got terrible so I wear glasses and colored contacts. In regards to your questions, I don’t think there are many but there is a place called Cambodia Town in Long Beach.

      • Well I was going back and forth from a book of womans grafitti. I wanted a name that was not overly feminine as I did not want the bear to be too posessive of me. But also not male as that would be a bit weird. Also her art was cuter or more cuddly than some of the others in the book.

              • well its ok, its a nice book, I was stuck in it for a while, not returned for a bit. I swear I was kinda follwed or walked passed by a fairly large number of different people from films, cds and books. They all kinda walked passed me, then some stood in front of me. It was quite mysterious, I dont know if they were trying to gaslight me or if they were all on some kind of journey. It could be something to do with the extra terrestrials that came here, only two. but one of them did something rather unusual and got on a bus and sat paralell to me. well strange eyes regardless. So often such stories are unhappy or full of trauma and disguised with paralell traumas of a less supernatural manner. Of course there was more to it all. I was also concerned some of them may have been killers, and thats how they learnt to evade there own thoughts to the point they would follow trails of other peoples destinies. This could also imply higher levels of intelligence, or a need to understand there very own alienations, or too come near me and them to find a point of alienation for the sake of expressing the parts of atmosphere my journey or our journey had invoked in their art forms. Well maybe if people are doing enough work that gets them recognised then they have a tendancy to develope a lack of social skills that takes them to a point of learning outkast elements of human behaviour. Well anyway enough of that, peace peace

  2. I like the old pictures and your story. It’s inspiring and we all deserve a happy ending I hope you find yours.

  3. My goodness Britt….what a story. You ought to write a book about that. And as I have always said, you are a bringer of so much joy to the people here. I knew there was more with you, especially with some of those darker earlier poems….but, well, even I never guess. I am in awe of you tonight. What a story. And what a triumph. And you are only just starting! You go for it….and I don’t mean something pathetic like becoming president of the US. I mean something real.

  4. so beautiful and so wonderful to know and see you
    so cute and so wonderful you were so lovely I loved you toddlers pics and you kid pictures dear you are and were wonderful then also

    Loved your story as well dear

    Love you Ajay

      • Up until reading what you had to say, my only experience with that was a friend adopting a child from Cambodia and learning the history there, which is truly terrifying. Most people don’t know anything about it and if they do, it’s sort of in the back of their mind somewhere.
        I think we all learn something when people share their backgrounds like that.

        • Most people don’t know. Some find out through word of mouth, class presentations, or know of someone who went through it and shared their story. I wish there was more awareness about it; to honor the 2 million that died and those that survived.

          • You’re right, most people don’t know. I’m a fairly educated woman and I didn’t know, but I’m also not ignorant to the struggles of others or the genocide in other regions of the world. It’s so incredibly mind-blowing that things like this are still going on in different places, even as we speak. They are still finding mass graves all over the world from various things and it’s scary how much turmoil people try to bury away. I have no idea what gives anyone the right to treat other people that way, for no reason whatsoever. It’s heinous.

            • Isn’t it crazy how evil we can be to one another as human beings? It is definitely mind-blowing. And whatever one buries, has a tendency to resurface. Some things cannot be buried or hidden forever.

  5. So I am going to parrot what the other posters above me and say, that is quite the family history. It is so cool to see your child pics. Do you know what my family tells me when they look at my child pics? You were such a cute kid Brad, what happened? -ouch- Luckily no one in their right mind could say that to you. (Although I did toy with the idea of saying that to mess with you, lol).

    My Monday went well, thank you! Hope your day is going well! 😀

  6. Its sad when one doesnt have much history or knowledge of the past. Sometimes i think how lucky i must be to have access (still) to words and memories of my family. Then again, some things id rather delete and not have any recollection at all….
    This post of yours marks the anniversary so well! You are one of the most heart-warming blog writers i know and im happy to have the chance to see a glimpse of your teddy bear-infused life! 🙂

    • I think there’s always a good and bad side to it, but still… there are times I wish I just knew a bit more. I only have bits and pieces of stories my mother tells me, and my dad doesn’t really speak of his.

      Thank you C. Owl. ♥

  7. You captured my attention from beginning to end. Such a beautiful Blog! And a beautiful person you are!

  8. Thanks for sharing your history along with the pictures. I feel like I know you better now, and that is certainly a good thing. One of the wonderful thing about blogging is that it allows you to share details with a larger group of people, not just writing letters to individual people…though letters allow privacy when you don’t want to share everything with everybody. Again, thanks!

  9. Just cannot get this post out of my mind for some reason…amazing – and that last happy pic in the water. What a journey.

  10. Aww boo boo, you were such a cute child. Love the one with the teddy bear in your mouth ;). I wish my family had more old photos of when they were in cambodia or thailand. How awesome would it be if we found out we were somehow related ^_^

  11. Wow – so interesting!!!♥ So hello Christina – lovely to have met you in this ‘almost’ past year!! 😆

    You really have come from a tough background, and that picture of all those skulls is just sooo chilling, and really helps to visualize exactly what your wonderful Mum and Dad have come through and also the family they have lost, in one way or another – that’s so horribly sad!! But such a sweet picture of you as a baby – I’m sure you gave your parents so much strength to try and find the life they wanted. It’s easy to give up in a situation like that, but when you have a little one with a whole future ahead for them, it must be a lot of pressure, but nevertheless a drive to find freedom and a ‘real’ life for the new family! 🙂

    That’s interesting and very amusing what you said about your grandmother on your mothers side not eating pork because of her religion – my grandmother on my mothers side wouldn’t eat pork either!! 🙂 I have no idea why, her parents in the 1920’s were market gardeners (small time farm owners) and reared chickens and pigs as well growing vegetables, so a bit of a mystery that! And I grew up in a family that didn’t eat pork either, and weirdly that had nothing to do with my mothers mother, but a religion that my parents joined (World Wide Church Of God) actually from the US (not a British church) you probably won’t have heard of it as it’s not one of the really big churches. We all left that church in the 90’s ( praise the Lord!!! 🙄 ) But something lovely did come out of it – my best friend, who I think I mentioned to you before was originally from the US, but has been in Britain for many years now – such a lovely honest sweet friend! So I have had some US connections, but all in the UK – strange, but true! Oh by the way – I do eat pork now – occasionally, but I don’t think it has a great flavour compared to chicken and beef, so it’s not high on my menu! 🙂

    And your mum making you dresses – aahh such a dedicated mother trying her best. My mum did things like that too, and I didn’t appreciate it either, but you think differently when you grow up, you understand the situation a lot better.

    And look at you at that piano!! 😀 Trained as a classical pianist! Wonderful! Do you still play today?

    And your love of teddies!! I can see that – you look like you are about to eat that one! 😉

    Well, this was great to read all of this Britt, another side of you, really appreciate you posting this, and understanding a little bit about you roots, and what your Mum and Dad have been through to reach out for a better life.

    Looking forward to the next 99 posts – that sounds a lot when you put it like that!!
    Susanna xx 😀

    • Hello Susanna! I’m so accustomed to Suzy >_<

      And yes, my parents fought hard for me and my brothers to come to the US so we could have a better life, and for that I am incredibly grateful – horrid dresses and all! If I could turn back the clock, I would have been proud of wearing them and claim they are all custom made; which technically they were, by my mum. Age sure does change our perspective on things.

      As for the church, I haven't heard of that one but I know many people believe it unclean to eat piggies so I'm not surprised. I don't mind eating it now, but I think I'm allergic to it in large quantities.

      I don't play any musical instruments anymore but I wish I did. My dad sold off the piano and bass (and the rest of our instruments – drum set, guitar) to pay the bills, and they wanted me to focus on school and my studies.

      99 doesn't sound so bad when I see that I've already completed 260-something. 😛 Granted there have been many days I didn't want to post but kept the resolution to myself. Crossing my fingers that I'll make it to "1"!! ^_^

      • Well, I think you’re doing tremendously well posting every day, I started out doing that, but never intended to carry keep that up – I just wouldn’t cope with that. You’re a very determined girl Britt – that’s nice to see! 🙂

        And you can still call me Suzy – so much easier that the full version! 😀

      • Oh – and I forgot to mention your beautiful photograph at the top of the post, you as a little girl, and your lovely curls – sooo sweet!!!♥ What age were you on that picture?

  12. OK Britt… now I understand you were not talking about an illness but about the support you got because you opened up about your past. How lucky we are that we were able to see this side of you as well. You went through so much! I am sure you would agree that it made you who you are today. You will never be a boring figure that is for sure! And hey what is a little teddy bear obsession… I had it with reindeer…
    How are you with music now?

    Ps: you were pretty and you still are… 🙂

    xoxo, Eszter
    http://kukolina.wordpress.com/2013/09/23/shrink-me-monday-i-hate-the-way-i-look/

    • Hi Eszter! Yeah, not an illness, I haven’t gotten sick in a quite some time – especially during the time I went vegan, though I’m not anymore. The stuffed toy obsession changes; I have gone through a Panda, Cow, Bear, and now Unicorns! ♥

      The instrument playing hasn’t continued but my love for music is still burning strong.

      xoxo

  13. you’re
    such a tough, cool
    cookie
    ~
    your “younger” photo
    really reminds me
    of my daughter
    same age, teeth, eyes, hair
    as her now
    ~
    only her
    colour is lighter

    • Thank you Geo. Your daughter is so beautiful; inside and out – though some of that is attributed to having awesome parents. 😉 It’s been awhile since I’ve seen a photo of her, but I hear children grow up fast! Hope you and your family have been well. xx

  14. Your heart reflects so very well what your parents blessed you with! Your beginnings shaped you into what you are today…so very genuine, and one of the most real people I know. That is why it is always easy for you to write especially from the heart! Awesome post Brit…so very awesome! Have a beautiful Sunday!

And the wind whispers...

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