Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Kimchi Thoughts

Isn't it funny what brings you back to the blog. It is amazing how the addition of our newest has consumed my time and thoughts. However, tonight I was having kimchi thoughts...so I hopped over to write them down.

My sister and I were recently having a discussion on kimchi. Her boyfriend does not like the smell of kimchi. As a whole, I like kimchi, but I had to agree that I wasn't that fond of the smell that it leaves in my refrigerator...so, I just make sure I eat it when I have it. Anyhow, during our conversation, my oldest son had to add his two cents (as usual). "I don't like kimchi," he told us. This is true. I have a picture of him trying kimchi for the first time and it's priceless. I think we teased him about being very "un-Korean-like" or something like that and he just made faces at us and ran off to play.

So, nearly two weeks later (both boys are asleep), I find myself with time to think and for some reason the kimchi conversation popped into my head. From there, I started to think about when I started liking kimchi. Then I started thinking about when I tried kimchi for the first time. I can vaguely remember going to a Korea-American picnic when I was an early teen and refusing to try it and my next clear memory of kimchi was when I was well into adulthood. In fact, I think it was shortly before we adopted our oldest son. Someone once told me that I must like kimchi because of my Korean genes. Really?

He tried kimchi, I remind myself. Why must he like it? My mother's family is Irish. Does that mean she has to know how to dance the Irish jig? Well, actually, she does know how to dance the Irish jig...that's not the point. I like kimchi. I hate mushrooms. I love pasta. Am I Italian? Or, am I just hungry and in desperate need of sleep?

Bottom line, just because we were born in Korea does not mean we have to love all things Korean. I'm going to guess that even people who do live in Korea don't love all things Korean. So, no more "un-Korean-like" statements from me. He's who he needs to be and that's what is important.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

All Koreans, no matter where they were raised, don't have to like kimchi. All Americans don't like hot dogs and apple pie either. Some English people don't drink tea. There is also the matter of him being a child. We can all think of things we didn't like as children that we do now! Maybe he'll like it as an adult, maybe he won't. In any case, he'll be who he is..Korean by birth and genetics, American by being raised here. And an individual.

Crystal said...

I was googling "korean adoptions" and I came across your blog. I also am a Korean adoptee. My parents are as white as white can be. I just wanted to tell you that I agree with this whole blog. Unfortunately I don't speak Korean, and I always get Korean women coming up to greet me in Korean. I just give them a blank stare and say.. "sorry I'm adopted".. then follows a look of question from them. HAHA.

Anonymous said...

It's silly to think that adopted Koreans or anyone else are genetically predisposed to like certain foods. My 6-yr-old son LOVES spicy foods, especially Korean-style, and just makes sure to have several glasses of water available when eating something like kimchi or spicy noodles. My 2-yr-old son the other day was eating some noodles that had a dash of Korean red pepper flakes in them. He made a face, said they were too spicy, and proceeded to pick one tiny little red flake off his tongue!

Glad to see a new update. It's different with two, isn't it?? My 2nd arrived last fall (2009) and life's been flying by ever since.

Heidi Biglin said...

I have seen your blog before, but never commented. Thanks for keeping it real. My son is a Korean adoptee (who is now 16 mos old) being raised in Traverse City...In the back of my mind is always what kinds of experiences he needs and will need. Will he want to be completely submerged in Korean culture, should we learn Korean as a family, should we move to a more diverse area, will he not care, etc. It is nice to hear that there can be a middle ground. For the record, he loves kimchi as much as sauerkraut and has a big taste for bulgogi made with venison; go figure.

Yoori said...

You haven't posted in a while, but amidst some furious googling, I randomly came across your blog. Just wanted to say hello :) and tell you that my husband is a Korean adoptee, we plan to adopt 2 from Korea as well, and I also went to UMich! Crazy lol :D

Carrie said...

looking for a good adoption agency for Korea-can you help? Thanks!

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