I was better off at the club where I had been rehired in 2019. After being appointed bar manager for early shift to a karaoke bar that was up for sale. A club in an area that was frequented by thefts every night of the week. Nothing was safe, no atm or purse. Workers who were robbed with their cash earnings had become a daily event. Along with shoplifters hauling carts of stolen goods out of the local Walmart on a regular basis.
This year, is a different story. this year, I'm faced with the reality of my elderly parents who were never my friends. The people who used me as slave labor for the duration of my childhood;- I spent 4hrs a weekend mowing the lawn on a small riding mower from the time I learned to drive one at age 4.
Cleaning the entire house, windows, polishing furniture, was another 3+ hours, plus pulling weeds (invasive plants) from a large daylily garden and the vegetable garden every weekend. Without an allowance, but armed with lunch tokens, I didn't know how other kids got money for extra stuff at school. I didn't have brand name clothes, ever. And, I was humiliated because my mom, who was a Japanese designer:- made my sweatshirts,.school dresses, Aloha wear that was unpopular, overalls, stuffed animals, doll clothes, and piano competition dresses.
I had Hello Kitty by 1979, and noone knew what it was...so I was berated through H.S. graduation for packing homemade inarazuahi and nori rolls for lunches. I was a loner, yet managed to have a few friends who never stood up for me, but who included me on their weekend trips to the Jersey Shore or wanted to take me along skiing with their church.
There were very few breaks in the dismal northeast sky. But I got through, and was inwardly happier then most kids know to have had those experiences.
Revisiting all that I was put through, everyone called me an "ungrateful ethnic". Especially my parents. The same parents who pay good white folk to do the same chores I and my brother did for free.
But my mom, after her debilitating surgeries- she stopped distinguishing between us as children under 10yrs old and her friends kids who were entering adulthood. She became unable to see reality. That I was a kid, and made demands of me equal to the 20something college students taking piano lessons with our world class instructors. And the pressure, hasn't stopped.
As a non-vocalist (it's not my primary thing) doing lip trills like any body does in modern day America;- my mom can't understand the difference between common practice and "superstars". Her brain, after severe spinal surgery, pushes her personality into hyper violent mode. The derogatory comments spill out relentlessly. Accusing me of thinking I'm a superstar and being stupid for doing lip trills.
To make things worse, she then spills over and does the same thing with my piano playing- something I excelled at as a kid largely self taught despite the presence of world class instructors. What I see, is a psychotic disabled immigrant parent who has a delusional alcoholic and violent husband. And it's heartbreaking to have had to witness the past few years. The pandemic opened my eyes to the medical and community abuse. And out here their indifference to provide any Japanese translation that my mother can understand without a dictionary at her side.
Today, I'm caught in this continued nightmare of family, 2 family members left in the USA. While I had attempted to change my nationality to Japan;- my downfall was from the USA not allowing her to register my existence in Japan-- despite my uncles and aunts willingness to help me claim my by blood Japanese nationality. So I could have a regular income, home, family or relationship I want badly.
My father's violent, inappropriate, and intrusive behavior was a deal breaker as his main focus every day around 7pm is to literally murder me-- as he reviewed his plan and berates my mother of she doesn't cooperate. Though he's threatened her life, and the cat's life as a drunk & medicated veteran USAF intelligence officer.
The USA monitors my parents, and has for decades. The DoD has told me my parents are "batshit" crazy. Yet noone has intervened to end the psychological torture in my absence. The community is equally torturous, and they cling to their social right to be over the top anti-Japanese-American/ Anti-Asian. There's noone out here to protect us. While Asians with broader communities also help the anti-Japanese sentiment, there is also no solidarity from any government officials or employees.