Remembrance-athon

Short version: Will you take a minute, either on Facebook or this blog, to post a memory about So Young, even if it’s just a memory about a character or personality trait or quirk?

Long version: I’ve been poking around the blog over the past few weeks, reading old posts and thinking about what I’ll write about this coming Sunday, February 28, which will be the three-year anniversary since So Young passed away. The blog can be pretty sad and hard to read, because it ends a certain way. But the overall theme is a joyful one — the hope we have in God and that God loves us.

Tonight I read the “Remembrances” page, and it really touched me (https://mynewmarathon.wordpress.com/remembrances/). I was struck by the number of people whose lives were touched by her. I thought it might be good to try that idea again. This is a great way to remember her.

If you have a moment and can think of something to write, will you post a memory of So Young that you have?

Here’s mine.

I remember So Young playing the guitar in the living room. She would sit on the floor with sheet music spread around her, strumming either the purple electric/acoustic I gave her or the old guitar that she got from her brother Josh. She would sing as  she played. It was one of the ways she would worship God.  One of her favorite songs — and one of my favorites to hear — was “How Deep the Father’s Love for Us.”  That was a common theme among her favorites: God’s love for us.

SY_Kim_Guitar

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20 Responses

  1. Ahh…miss her so much. I think of her always, when I put my running shoes on and step out the door. Our favorite place to run together was at the Marina. We met up there early on Saturday mornings when we could, as we both loved to run in the woods. We always started out together, but oh she was so much faster than me, and although she was always ahead of me, I know she was always looking back to make sure I was okay. Even though no one else might be around I felt safe and happy knowing my dear friend was somewhere ahead. She loved to run and she brought so much love to the sport. I so miss her infectious laughter, her kindness and while I was so much older than her, she always made feel young at heart. You brought so much joy and I know that you are still looking out for me during my runs.

    Love you So Young AKA “Ruby”.

    Debby AKA Colorado Dreamin’

    • That’s beautiful. Thanks, Debby!

      • So miss her, but happy you and your family are thriving and finding joy again. It is what she would want too. God Bless 🙂

    • Keep on running Debby. She will be there making sure you are safe
      🙂

  2. I remember the cookie exchange we had at one of her dear friend’s home. She made sure we watched a video about God and had passion for Him that made her shine like a bright light. So Young also brought small gift bags for everyone and I felt her love for me and was feeling so blessed to call her friend and sister in Christ. Even in the mist of all her struggles, she cared enough to continue to give of herself so generously. Thank you for helping me relive the joy of having had her as a cherished friend.

  3. I had been praying for So Young & the family for awhile before I met her. I rode “shotgun” w/ her & James’ Mom Doris to Johns Hopkins for a treatment on one of those mornings when your fingers feel like they could snap off like icicles the moment you venture outside. In the dusky pre-dawn there wasn’t much to see, & I respected the sadness I’d heard So Young had been dealing with. We rode along in silence quite awhile, but it was not anxious or angry-feeling silence… much more like an invitation for both of us to look upward before starting to toss around words. I recall thinking of the Biblical character Job whose friends were correctly respecting his great suffering until they just felt compelled to open their yaps & ease their own anxieties by speculating on “why” Job was getting the rough treatment from the Creator. When So Young broke the silence, she turned to me & said simply, “I like you.” She asked me what I thought about some perplexing social situations outside the church that were affecting her girls…. very sophisticated issues having to do w/ pressure to feel 2nd rate due to Asian heritage by a peer who has Asian heritage, but her Mom’s new boyfriend was not open to respecting that fact.

    Our day was one of opportunities to not say much, but “be”in each other’s presence in multiple seating arrangements. I wasn’t “worried” about So Young anymore. She already knew the deal: Hebrews 11 & 12. What was happening to their family was mournful & gargantuan…. overwhelming & only able to be handled “one day at a time” or as the KJV puts Jesus’ words in the “Sermon on the Mount”: “Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” ( a popular refrain since earliest pilgrimage @ the Perricci household). See Matt 6:33-34. 😌 She never would have wished the trials that followed on the ones most precious to her. But HOW we struggle, making the invisible visible speaks something stronger than words can.

  4. Although I did not have opportunity to spend time with So Young, I learned, from reading her blogs, how devoted she was to God and had and has a very special relationship with Him. She loved her family so much which was evident in her “fight” to spend as much quality time with them as her body would allow. I continue to brag, to others, how she ran marathons although she was blind….So Young had better sight than most and this sight reached where only God will allow certain people to see.

  5. So Young reminded me of her cousin and my daughter, Kiyoun in so many ways. Her love for Jesus and others around her is evident in her action and her words. So sad from our point of view that God took her into His arms so soon, but thanks to you, James, her legacy lives on! What a way to spread His love!

  6. I remember So Young remembering 🙂 how her mom used to sing hymns to her children. We talked about this at length and it is part of what inspired me to explore the hymns more thoroughly myself, and to sing them to my sons.

    I remember So Young’s creativity, which inspired me to be more creative. She often gave me meaningful handmade gifts which I still treasure to this day.

    I remember… so much more. Every day. I’m grateful for memories of my dear friend and for the hope of heaven.

    • Thank you Kim. You were so precious to So Young, more than words could express.

  7. I remember calling/e-mailing So Young to ask for prayer one day. Some days later at church, I was heading towards the exit in the main area of Chantilly High School after service let out and I heard someone repeatedly calling my name from behind me. “Cathi, Cathi, CATHI.” I turned around to find So Young catching up to me. I felt bad that I didn’t hear her the first time she said my name but I also felt really loved by her that she wanted to check in with me before I left! She let me know she was praying for me and encouraged me. I think I remember she had her hair down and was wearing a dark color top with medium wash jeans that afternoon.

    • *Centreville High School. I always got it mixed up! The address is in Chantilly…

  8. So Young and I originally bonded over races (her marathons and my triathlons). But, in 2009, when I told her I was pregnant, she was so excited. Genuinely excited for me. She bought me a few special, thoughtful, just really sweet gifts. I was touched, by how thoughtful she was. Her level of enthusiasm was really remarkable. I realize now, that her excitement for me reflected how much she enjoyed being a mother. I’m glad I got to share my journey into motherhood with her.

  9. One of my fondest memories of So Young was during our childhood. We would talk all night long until mom and dad would knock on the door and tell us to go to bed. We never listened. We kept on talking. I remember hearing pots clanking in the kitchen and the smell of my dad’s spaghetti sauce cooking from the kitchen. We loved dad’s spaghetti. We had so much fun talking all night long. I would talk so much, that So Young would get tired and eventually she would tell me to go to bed but then she would say one last thing which led me to start talking again and then we would keep talking for another hour. The last time we had one of these talks was at the church’s retreat several years back when So Young invited me to go. We shared a room and talked like we did when we were kids. She informed me that I snored. Funny thing is, she did too. I miss my sis and wish she didn’t have to leave us so early in life, but I take comfort in knowing she is whole and happy in Heaven. I remember her each time I run, especially when it gets hard. I feel like she is whispering to me to push forward and to never give up. Love you sis. You are forever in my heart.

    • How precious, So Me!!

  10. Thought of her this morning and did not even realize what day it was until I saw your post. The thought brought a smile, a craving for Krispy Kreme Donuts and the acknowledgement that I need to spend more time with family.

  11. I have so many wonderful memories of So Young from the first time James brought her to our house to meet us in 1993 to spending the last months of her life with her in 2013. I simply loved her. Moms often love their daughters-in-law as their daughters. It is difficult to limit myself to one happy memory.

    I remember her generous, gracious heart. For a while toward the end of her time on earth, we fell into a daily routine. After James left for work and the girls were in school, I’d prepare So Young her favorite breakfast. Each day she wanted country fries, bacon, scrambled eggs, and toast. We sat together in the large bed that was divided into two sections so that each person could raise the back and legs into a comfortable position. We would pray before she ate. Then I would read to her. The first few days, I read a devotional book someone gave us. It was terrible and described sad things that women endure. I wouldn’t read those to her. So I began reading Pat McManus’s book They Shot Canoes Don’t They? It is not a book about canoes. It is about bubbling hunters and fishermen in the north woods. We often laughed so hard that I could barely read. I never imagined in 1993 when I met this beautiful young woman, nor in 1997 when she became my son’s bride, the many joys and sorrows we shared.

    She prayed for her family and God was faithful to answer her prayers. After she went to heaven, God sent a new lady to love her family. As So Young often said, “God is good all the time.”
    Doris Gage

    • I don’t know why I said that So Young wanted toast at breakfast. She always wanted a bagel with cream cheese.

  12. Thank you for sharing this memory. What a great one.

  13. Not sure what happened to my longish post.
    I just wanted to scroll up to fill in Exodus verse 4:11 that God claims “blame” for what he puts us through & its awkward to hate him & yet love one who loves him & is a veritable artesian well of His (very much needed) Grace on us.
    That verse suggesting So Young is happy, mindful, cheering you all on, so don’t hang back in bursting into your own glorious partnerships w/ Her, but also your Shepherd/Friend/Redeemer/Creator is in Colossians 3, probably v.3, which was worded more absolutely in the OLD KJV, catching my attention as a teenager.
    And looking @ John 11:34, the shortest v. In the Bible… what He chose to do in response to the ugliness & painfulness is the headliner of the story for each of us.
    We shall BE like Him, Jesus promises: I envision So Young VERY big & strong, arms crossed, long pony tail flicking to the side, standing like Atlas, astride her old stomping ground.

    My friends had a baby girl some years back (military hospital) that the medical team recommended not giving support to b/c she had abnormalities “inconsistent w/ life”. My friends took the child home, asked for prayer & advice, kept her (Carolyn, a name selected b/f birth) swaddled & close to their hearts, doing gavage chronic feeds thru the tiny tube they had insisted be placed. Carolyn lasted a few months… the take away message was not “hospitals are staffed by Philistines” though many may be… it was that in the Garden of Gethsemane, Christ is very willing to keep us company & show us what we otherwise could not come to know: Himself.

    Malformed as her little face appeared to be, the contentment she registered ion it was supra human, defying explanation, by the time her short earthly “tour of duty” was done.

    Oh yes, my friends sang to her a lot of the time, too.

    At her funeral, she had a tiny closed white casket, a few gorgeous B&W portraits & this verse on the handout:
    Carolyn: lent, not given.
    A bud on earth,
    A rose in Heaven.

    Warmest greetings to each of you.
    Please give Doris a hug for me.
    Best Regards,
    Ellen

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