Yes, you read that right. A kidless weekend is a wonderful much deserved treat for any parent. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love kids, especially my three wonderful sons. I find other people’s kids to be adorable, too, especially my friends’.  But being a parent is a great load of responsibility. And we all get burned out from time to time. We get to a point in which we lose our patience, self control, sanity, and even our dignity…. Read more

This past week has taught us that life is full of broken relationships. While there is plenty of beauty and hope, the news media often magnifies the darker side—violence and hatred. Dark feelings are beneath these insidious acts, whether it was the tragic killing of another human being in the midst of law enforcement, or the unnecessary murders of five officers of the peace, or even radical Islamic terrorism against the eighty civilians in Nice, France (and other parts of the… Read more

Black lives matter. Period. Yes, we hear you. We’ve heard of your struggles, past and present. We know that in America you have a history of being treated less so you often stand in solidarity with each other, even crossing different religions, socioeconomic class, and cultural/political affiliations. This may explain why, among all ethnicities in this diverse country, you often utilize the phrase, “my people” and “your people” based on skin color. But deep down inside, you also know that… Read more

Families all across America celebrate the nation’s Independence Day with food, fireworks, and patriotic music. This year, I will celebrate by sharing what America means to me. America is too great for small dreams, according to the late President Ronald Reagan. As I reflect upon this statement, I realize that this is my own sentiment as well. There are a ton of words that I can write to explain the greatness of this nation, including her unique founding roots and history… Read more

of single moms, married moms, dads of all kinds–foster, adopted, step, biological and honorary to raise our children.  Add to that list important figures like aunts, uncles, grandparents, godparents, and mentors (single or married). And if I were to include all the other adults who have cared for and loved on my kids throughout the years, then I would have to acknowledge their wonderful teachers, sports coaches, den and troop leaders, Sunday school volunteers, neighbors, and their friends’ parents.  Wow,… Read more

I once met a woman who, through her trickling tears, defiantly declared, “I am stronger now than ever before… I’m learning to be strong for me and my children.” But the kind of strength she was referring to was not the kind spoken by St. Francis de Sales: Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength. No, the strength this woman exhibited was the type seeped deep with stubbornness, “woe is me” mentality, full of resentment,… Read more

It is the first week of summer break and I’m ready to send the kids back to school. In fact, I was ready after the first day when my sons were bickering incessantly, the oldest provoking the younger ones, the little ones not responding sweetly, patiently, or wisely as I had advised, but brushing aside all my admonishing, and each of the three taking turns lashing out at me instead of de-escalating. With more than two kids, their alliances with each… Read more

The numbers roughly correlates to the years these lessons were learned. #1 You can be a professional and one who benefits from the service of a professional, all within the same day. Before the days of rampant cell phone usage, clinicians had to wear beepers. There’s nothing like getting paged while sitting on the counseling sofa with your husband to impress the therapist. #2 At times you are at the peak, and the next moment you’re in a valley. Life is a… Read more

It’s so hard to do life without struggles. Ask anyone if they have ever felt pain or grief and the answer will be a consistent, if not resounding, “yes.” We might be tempted to ponder, how can I go through this journey without suffering? Yet, the more realistic question might be, how do I cope with life’s trials the best way possible? When illness or disease hits, finances go sour, relationships become broken, or our plans just fall apart  unexpectedly, people… Read more

America is currently debating on LGBTQ issues (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and the latest term is “queer”) as it relates to a private business’ legal rights, public bathroom policies, and a counselor’s ethical duties. As a social worker, a counselor, a private business owner, a parent, and a consumer of public services, I have some insights into these hotly contested topics. As an Asian American, a former refugee, an immigrant- turned-citizen, agnostic-turned-Christian, and a Californian-turned-Texan, I can tackle the different, oftentimes controversial… Read more

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