By Braddah Lance
To many, those words just mean a holiday but it seems to be the backbone of which America was built on.
btw, the actual date of the said "independence" as the legal separation of the 13 colonies from Great Britain has been long disputed by historians as it "officially" happened on July 2, 1776 but the signing of the Declaration of Independence was done July 4, 1776 and even that in itself has been contested that it actually was signed a month later on August 2, 1776 per Wikipedia.
Wassup Wit Dat!
I think of Independence Day a little differently than most - if not all - but I think of it as the forefathers did - being independent.
Think about it. In dis great country we live in, every single person strives to be independent. While there are nurturing and growth happening, we all want to be individually independent. Look back at yourself growing up - or your keiki now - you (they) want to do things by themselves with da only difference by generations is dat today they want it here and now but bail me out if no can handle whereas da "old school" was dat it'll come in time or if we (parents) need you to suck it up, you bettah.
Right now, Da Keiki like do choke things by herself such as locking/unlocking/opening da door and brushing her teeth. You remembah wanting a bicycle so bad then aftah you got da hang of it you no like da training wheels cause you like ride by yourself. No fo'get da right of passage wen you got your driver's license or your first car. How's about going off to college and nevah looking back...... all about being independent.
Being first generation hea from Korea, my older brother and I were thrown face first into da fire. I remembah my parents working two jobs each and them sharing their struggles as they sought out their independence from da motherland like how they literally only ate Cup-O-Noodles and my Dad would gag if he was given one to eat now. With them working at all hours, my Mom would drop us off at school at Salt Lake and we would have to catch TheBus home.... to Kakaako everyday (boy, got some good mo'olelo's about those days). Imagine a 6 year old and a 9 year old riding TheBus by themselves - is it strange now or back then?
I remembah learning to cook an egg on da stove wen I was about 7. I would make kapakahi kine meals like butter, shoyu and rice mixed together and "peel" open a can of spam and eat it right out of da can. Wen we lived in Sand Island, I would hop da fence and just cruise da beach cause none of my classmates lived on da "island". I would go to da sports registrations and pick up da forms or go to da rec center and check out da activities to sign up for - get choke kine stories from da hana-battah days li'dat but always, independent.
Truth be told, I nevah asked (bothered) my parents for much even while going through elemenatary, intermediate (middle) and high school although they helped out with da much bigger things. I always figured out a way to take kea of da little everyday things like wen I missed my Senior Prom to attend my then girlfriend's Junior Prom cause could only afford to go to one. Aftah high school, working three jobs to pay for school and buy my very first motorcycle.
Wen it comes to July 4th, Independence Day, das wat comes to my mind wea I nevah choose to rely on oddah people. Truth be told, wen I look at Da Baby and Da Keiki, I want them to be independent as well and from an early age but at da same time, I don't want them to miss out wat I know I missed out. On da oddah hand, I want them to struggle and find themselves so they have a stronger sense of self.
So wen should one be independent? Do you remembah wen you became independent? Can you handle being by yourself or always need someone around? To go shopping with? To do things with?