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I no longer need to live a lie

sent in by James

I too, am a non-believer. I have lived in the south all my life but was not raised in a religious environment. My ethnicity is half-Japanese, half-Caucasian. I do not look Asian, so all my life I have lived as a white man. My beloved mother was the Japanese military wife of my father who is a southern Alabama native. Although my father was raised in the Bible belt, there was not practiced religion in our home. My mother never forced me to learn any of her beliefs, but told me of her experiences in Japan. Buddhism and Shintoism were the prevailing beliefs that she had been introduced to. She had a hard life as a child in post-WW2 Japan, but she taught me that love for family and one another is paramount. My brother was born when I was ten with Down’s syndrome. My father took several tours of duty overseas, but we stayed stateside. The burden on my mother was tortuous. Nevertheless, she managed to learn the American language, culture, how to drive, and even got her GED and pursued secondary education. I won’t even mention the challenges she had being an Asian in southern Alabama. She was taken from me after her second bout with cancer in 2001. Throughout my childhood my father always made sure we were cared for financially and otherwise, but could not verbally express his love.

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