From Which You Came

Dear Asian Youth,

“As you focus on clearing your generational trauma, do not forget to claim your generational strengths. Your ancestors gave you more than just wounds.” This is a message to children of immigrants:

Never forget your roots. Never forget where you came from, for forgetting exposes your greatest weaknesses and hides your greatest strengths.

You are the child of immigrants; you are the child whose ancestors crossed great oceans and lands in search of hope. They walked into a land that did not welcome them. Leaving their home of generations past to begin again in a new land. They left never knowing if they would return.

You are the child of risk-takers that placed everything they had on the horizon of a new day. They gave everything they had to be in a new land. They risked their lives and livelihoods.

You are the child of diplomats. Arriving in a land that would not welcome them, learning a new language, and understanding a new culture, your ancestors worked to be accepted.

You are the child of scholars who, by the nature of their environment, had to learn every day.

You are the child of so many things. But you are also the child of deep pain. You are the child of war, poverty, and loss. You are the child of heartbreak and fear. You are the child born with scars made decades before your birth.


From this, your ancestors rose, and so will you. You are the child of risk-takers, the child of diplomats, the child of scholars, and the child of so much more.

You, yes, you, are the product of every triumph and every fear of generations past. But like your ancestors, you will rise. Rise above it all and more. Each generation takes on the torch of the past, but attached is the baggage as well.

One day, you too must open that baggage and unpack everything that is in it. Take what you need, and leave what weighs you down.

This is why you must never forget. From the moment you were born, you held this torch and this baggage. And it is within your hands to do as you wish with it. But know that every generation has placed something in there, for you.

- Chris Fong Chew

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