3 grandkids roamed around on a rickshaw to beg for food
At a corner of Nguyen Van Linh Street (District 7, Ho Chi Minh City), Mrs. Lien sat next to a tricycle, wiping every drop of sweat on her forehead. From 5am to noon, when the sun was hot, she could only sell a few lottery tickets. Heaps of bottles, cardboard, and trash piled up on the rickshaw.
In the car, a 20-month-old boy slept soundly, his face smeared with dirt after a sunny day on the street with his grandmother. The other girl was 3 years old, holding Mrs. Lien tightly, crying because it was past noon and she still had nothing to eat.
Mrs. Lien and her 2 grandchildren went to pick up bottles on the tricycle
Ms. Lien confided that she has 4 children, 2 of them are grandsons, the blood of the youngest son in the family. Due to the advice of bad friends, her son has been caught in a round of labor law and has been in prison since March 2021. Daughter-in-law was afraid of poverty, 3 months later also left with her mistress, leaving 2 children for Mrs. Lien to raise.
Previously, Ms. Lien was from Long An and went to Saigon to sell noodles for a walk. Now that she is old, weak, and exhausted, she has to bear the burden of two more children, so she has to give up this job. 3 grandparents are renting a small house in District 7 for 1.2 million/month, approximately 15 square meters.
The house rented 1.2 million from 3 grandparents.
Divorced from her husband, spent more than half of her life alone raising children, now Mrs. Lien has two more children, who are in adulthood. A valuable asset in the house is a three-storey car, which Mrs. Lien often uses to carry her 2 children sitting on it, while picking up bottles and selling lottery tickets to earn food for the day.
She said, a few times, the daughter-in-law stopped by the house but then left too. Now that she is married, she does not care about 2 children.
“There was a time when I came back to visit my son and didn’t give me any money, I said: You give money to your son, he said he has no money now, take his kidney and sell it, if he can’t feed it, take it away and give it to someone else. So I’ve been trying to raise two kids from now on.
The two children were still breastfed, so they were short of money, and also had money for food and housing. He was very eager to go to school, pushed the cart across the school and kept asking his grandmother to let him go to school. I just received a briefcase, so I’ve been hugging him ever since.” Ms. Lien said.
Lien’s daughter-in-law left with her mistress, leaving 2 children for her grandmother to take care of
2 children every day follow her grandmother to sell lottery tickets
No matter how poor you are, you can’t send me away
In the morning, Mrs. Lien went to sell lottery tickets first, at 11, 12 noon, she took her two children home to rest, eat, and then in the afternoon picked up the bottles. Wherever they go, they give them whatever they eat. When it’s rice, vegetarian rice for charity, sometimes when she has a lot of money, she spends a little money, goes to the shop to buy two “real” meals for her two children. It’s called sang but it’s just chicken rice, sometimes it’s a bowl of noodle soup. After feeding the child, Mrs. Lien temporarily sipped the leftover broth in the bowl to overcome her hunger.
During the past few months of the epidemic, Mrs. Lien had to go to bed, everyone loved her 3 grandchildren, the one who gave food, the one who gave milk: “People let her stay for 4 months, she also took care of her food and water. When the state gave her milk, the leader asked for it. In the neighborhood, this person also helped feed 2 babies. The last time the state supported the money, but 2 I don’t have a birth certificate so I can’t pick it up.”Ms. Lien said.
From time to time, the son in the prison called back and advised her: “Mom is outside trying to raise two children for me, I’ll be back in a few months.”
3 grandkids eat charity meals in the park
Thinking about the dire fate in front of her eyes, Mrs. Lien would cry every night holding her grandson. She said that many days she went to sell lottery tickets, picked up the bottles, and returned home just in time to lie down and breathe. The two grandchildren missed their parents a bit, so they were disturbed all the time, she held the boy lying on one side, the girl lying on the other side, trying to lull her to sleep.
Someone in the volunteer association messaged that she could send 2 children to the center, they would take care of accommodation. But Ms. Lien refused that offer.
“Three nieces and nephews are poor, but they try to feed each other with porridge. The little boy clings to me. If he doesn’t sleep in the middle of the night, he cries hard. But whenever he cries, he will faint, his hands and feet will turn purple. I am worried that he will be sick. heart, but have not had the money to take him to the doctor. Afraid of going to the center, no one knows how to comfort his nephew, bothering them.”Ms. Lien confided.
Difficulties and hardships will certainly be many, but you know where to go or get there. Witnessing two children grow up, healthy, it is a joy, a motivation to help Ms. Lien continue to live the difficult days ahead.
Source: Thang Tai Tu – Love Connection
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