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The Disabled

I was just nine months old, “as beautiful as a princess” my mom said, when I had an allergic reaction to a vaccination which left me lame.

It was nobody’s fault they said, it was just one of those things. I was just unfortunate. Mom wanted my brothers to take care of me, so she constantly reminded them that I was the one with bad karma in the family, so they could be successful.

For that reason they always fed me well, but I never learned anything. When I turned 25 my mom was 65 and she began to worry that she would pass away and my brothers would no longer be able to take care of me when I grew old. She said I should have a baby of my own to take care of me in my old age.

We asked a man for help. Today my daughter is 9 months old, and I am afraid to have her vaccinated.

Although her father does not live very far away, he never comes to see her. We have kept our promise too and never contact him. The NGO staff that bring gifts to all the single mothers in town, keep asking how he can ignore his child and behave as if she doesn’t exist? How could he have agreed to father a child knowing as he did that she would have a hard life? And so on and so forth. The problem is that such young women, who have often studied abroad and who work all the time with foreigners, know nothing about life in Vietnam. They cannot understand that in my eyes, he did me a favor, my baby is a blessing. Without him I would not even have a child.

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