Relationship: Child of im/migrant
Present from my mother
Present from my mother

The dress shown in the picture is one of the many dresses that my mom makes at the factory, and it’s the first one that she gave me as a present. I’ve received one every year starting from when I was 15 years old. My mother was brought over from China by my grandfather almost 25 years ago and yet, she’s still working in a clothing factory. As an immigrant, it’s hard to start a new life from scratch, especially if you’re Chinese and unable to speak English. It’s no surprise that she’d surround herself with other Chinese immigrants like herself, and the job that seems most common for them is making clothes. I am not ashamed of my mother-- she works long hours, suppressing pain and negative emotions out of her life so that she can focus on the positive. She comes home late at night, yet she still gently knocks on my door and smiles as she holds out the dress for me to try on. I consider it a drop of her sweat and tears that she shed trying to build a family in a foreign land and bringing happiness for her child. My family isn’t strict on getting presents for birthdays or Christmas, but it’s the surprise presents that make each other the happiest. 

Place(s): China

– Ivy Huang

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant