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정희수 칼럼

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KUKI Home Inspection and Photo

  Dr. Joseph Chung - Column
 정희수 칼럼



After a few second, she replied:  “Yes Daddy, I love you!”

But there was misunderstanding. For Kim Nancy’s love for him was obedience; for Nancy, her love for her father was communication and sharing. 

Nancy wanted her father to share her feeling about the sky, the flower, the mist on the leaves of cucumber plant early in the morning. She was writing a poem in her heart. She wanted to talk to the birds flying high; she wanted to ask the birds where they were flying to. She wished her father could share all these. This cultural and psychological gap could not be resolved; it needed time, a long time.

After their arrival in Montreal, Kim and Nancy had found themselves in much smaller space and had to see each other much more often. This facilitated, in a way, their close contacts and provided a chance to know each other.

 However, both Nancy and Kim had to survive physically and psychologically. And they needed each other to survive. This led to a new father –daughter relation focused on the cooperation for the survival.

 Nancy needed her father for financial survival; Kim needed Nancy for the management of the dépanneur. In fact they became a partner. Therefore, their relation became horizontal in nature instead of being vertical. This was something unfamiliar to both Nancy and Kim.

Nancy gave up her romantic expectation from her father; she became more and more independent and developed a self -reliance in her pursuit of happiness. Nevertheless, she kept a strong sociological attachment to Kim, she greatly appreciated Kim’s hard work and enormous sacrifices.

In short, the immigration has created a situation where the father and daughter were able to develop a new kind of relationship based on the mutual respect, cooperation, more practical dialogue and greater self-reliance in the pursuit of the objectives of life.

Owing to this new elation, Nancy could choose appropriate path of education and career; she found a spouse of her choice; she developed a small universe in which she was happy. This is a success story of post-immigration father –daughter relation.

Kim remembered all these and felt pride and satisfaction. He felt that he did something good; he tried to convince himself that he loved Nancy in a constructive way.

Kim’s relation with Paul was something else. It was more difficult. Kim’s relation with Paul before immigration was one of friction and Paul’s complaints. Paul was in fact angry. As far as Paul was concerned, Kim was not good father.

He witnessed psychological suffering of his mother; he thought that his mother was lonely, always slave of family obligations, little time to go out and meet friends and, above all, waste of her university education. Paul at the age of 12 thought that it was his sacred duty to protect and care for his mother. To him, his father was no more than a stranger living under the same roof.

One day, he tried to talk to Kim about a fight he had with a kid at school. Paul thought guilty of beating up the kid. So he wanted to talk to Kim hoping that he could say something so that Paul could justify his fight.

“Father, I like to talk to you” begged to Kim.

“Son, I have no time. Later!” was Kim’s reply.

Obviously, Paul felt angry; he thought that Kim did not care for him; he doubted of Kim’s love for him. Paul did not know the heavy pressure on Kim; he did not know how insecure Kim felt in his job, because he did not have right link (yongo). Whatever the reason justifying Kim’s cold attitude toward him, Paul could not understand; he did not know the complexity of adult’s life in Korea.

While they were in Jeju-Do, Kim wanted to talk to Paul.

“Paul, what do you think about going to Canada?”, Kim asked this question already, but he repeated it.
<to be continued>