Northern Marianas College (NMC)’s Regent Nominating Committee is seeking two (2) prospective individuals to serve as members of its Board of Regents. This prestigious position offers a unique opportunity to contribute to the strategic direction and governance of the College. We invite applications from individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences who are passionate about higher education and committed to advancing the College’s mission of cultivating stewardship through scholarship.
...

Read More

ProaNews

The latest news from Northern Marianas College

ESTORIAN-MAMI 

Compiled by the NMC Humanities Club

Estorian-Mami, our story, is a student-led campaign aimed at empowering and uplifting voices by allowing Proas to share their story.

 

Grandmas. They force us to eat when we aren’t hungry. They give us candy when our parents say no. And they LOVE to tagu us 24/7. Grandmas are undoubtedly the big bosses of our homes (even though si grandpa thinks otherwise). When you go home today, hug your grandma just a little bit longer for those of us who can’t. In celebration of CNMI Women’s month, we asked you to share your favorite stories with your grandmas.

 

Here are those stories: 

 

I never met my mother's parents as they passed before I was born, but my dad's parents helped fill that void by always having time to watch over us in their homes. My grandma Frances, who we lovingly called Ma, would always have some chores for us to help her with like sweeping around the house or helping her sort through her Amut for medicine making. As we got older, my father was diagnosed with mouth cancer so Ma decided that she would care for us while he was away for treatment and it brought us so much closer to her as she effectively became the mother we all needed so badly in our adolescence.

My favorite memory between me and her was very recently. My auntie, uncle, and cousin were heading off to Korea for the Christmas holiday and they asked me if I could keep Ma company in that time. I happily agreed and stayed with Ma for the remainder of December 2023 where we shared many different stories. There was one moment where as we were watering the plants and feeding the chickens, I accidentally scratched myself on the dragon fruit spines and yelled, "EEGYAH!" She came over to see if I was alright and looked down at my arm. There was just a minor scratch on my "Pangelinan" tattoo, I just overreacted at the sudden scratching sensation. She looked down at it and shook her head. She never liked the idea of me getting a tattoo, let alone the family name on it, and said, "Asaina, boy, I still don't know why you got Pangelinan tattooed on your arm. EVERYONE knows you're Pangelinan, laii!" She always said what was on her mind and I love her for it.

Hu guaiya hao para todu i tiempu, Ma.

-

On the day of my 10th birthday, the hospital room was a somber place. My beloved grandma was there, her condition far from the best, confined to the ICU. We didn't celebrate; it felt wrong with the weight of her illness hanging over us. Yet, amidst the heaviness, my grandma, in her own way, turned the focus to me.

 

In that hospital room, where everyone seemed to forget it was my birthday, my grandma's love and thoughtfulness shone through. She asked one of my mom's sisters to fetch her purse, give me money, and wish me a happy birthday. I was touched by her gesture, but it brought tears as well—why celebrate when my grandma was facing such a difficult time?

 

But my grandma, with her wisdom and strength, imparted a lesson that would resonate with me forever. Even in the face of illness and impending loss, she emphasized the importance of celebrating life. She instructed my mom to take the money, urging us to find joy and mark my birthday in a meaningful way.

 

Her passing a few weeks later cast a shadow, yet the lessons endured. Some birthdays are challenging, a reminder of that poignant day in the hospital. Still, I carry forward the wisdom she shared, making the best out of each celebration and honoring her memory in the process. The invaluable lessons she taught me remain etched in my heart.

-

I don't see her often since she lives in Korea so every moment spent with her is precious. For context, my grandma is a widow and lives alone. But don't let that fool you, she lives a busier life than most people. She goes to the manåmko' swimming pool, goes to church, and is always hanging out with her friends. My favorite memory with my grandma was when we went to her garden together and harvested her cucumbers, radishes, and eggplants. I was wearing the Korean grandma swag she provided me with; bright purple shoes and a huge pink visor. After visiting her garden, we walked around her neighborhood holding hands, got some ice cream, and enjoyed each other's company. Now looking back at it, I miss her so much and wish she didn't live in a different country.

-

Whenever my grandma visited from Korea, she would always bring a bunch of Korean food products to make me food. My favorite soup dish growing up was Korean miso soup, also known as Doenjang Jjigae, and she would always make me that with a hot bowl of freshly cooked rice. It stays in the back of my head all the time. It's warm and comforting, just like the hot batch of rice she would make me every time. I miss her dearly for it's been years since I last got to be with her.

-

My grandma had passed for quite some time now, but I could never forget the moments we shared together. If there was one event that I cannot forget, it would be that one evening we camped out on the newly constructed gazebo-like structure where my late uncle's house used to stand. I spent my childhood growing up in the care of my maternal grandmother, so even going to bed, she was my companion. I recall her saying that she wanted to enjoy the fresh evening breeze as we slept that evening. So she said she wanted to sleep at the gazebo that night. We chatted for a bit after prayer and slept so soundly after. I thought to myself, that was one of the most peaceful sleeps I have ever had, and now looking back really makes me miss my grandmother so much. The feeling of her presence, her warmth, and the simple joy of sharing that quiet moment together remain etched in my memory, bringing both comfort and longing as I reflect on our time spent together. - ‘Sketch' Allen

-

My favorite memory with my grandma is cooking Angaur sweet bread with her. It was a bonding moment with her, my mother, and I. She told me stories of her childhood, we played Palauan music, and she taught me how to bake. I don't get many intimate moments with my grandmother, so I learned to cherish any moment I get. - Jerilynn Bluu Haruo

-

Oh, my grandma was such a special person in my life. One of my favorite memories with her was when she taught me how to cook her famous fried chicken. We spent the whole afternoon in the kitchen, measuring ingredients, mixing the dough, and of course, sneaking a few fried chicken along the way. I felt so loved and cherished in her presence, and I was so proud when we pulled those crispy, delicious fried chicken out of the stove. Looking back at that memory now, I feel a mixture of nostalgia and gratitude for the time we spent together and the knowledge she passed down to me. It's a memory that always warms my heart.

-

My favorite memory of my grandma is when we would be hanging out on the bamboo bed outside of the patio of their house. It would be around 9am and she had coffee and I had Milo. I would be dipping my pandesal in both her coffee and my Milo to eat, and it just felt nice because it wasn't hot but the sunlight hits the house just right.

-

Sadly, my maternal grandmother died when I was very young and unfortunately I was not as close to my paternal grandmother who passed away almost a year ago to this month. We had some good memories, just none that left a footprint... something I'll always regret.

-

My favorite memory with my grandma is helping her dress up every Sunday. My grandma was always called the fashionista amongst her friends, so she had a lot of pride in her outfit.

-

My grandma, Mchong, has always been the strongest person in my family. She's like our clan leader. My favorite memory was when we went to Palau for my grandpa's death anniversary. She showed me around Palau, got me free things haha and even got me to have lunch with my uncle, Upcoming president Tommy. She showed me the strength of being a Palauan and the beauty it comes with, especially being deep in the culture.

-

My favorite memory with my grandma is when she makes her yummy sukiyaki.

-

When my late grandma came to visit back then. This was during the times the power would go in and out. My grandma would just like to tell me and my siblings a bunch of stories and make us laugh.

-

My favorite memory with my grandma was when she told me about her childhood. She was visiting Saipan from the Philippines and it was the 2nd time I got to meet her so I wanted to know more about her. Looking back at it now, I hope that I'll be able to visit her and ask more questions about what she did in her life.

-

Growing up, my grandma used to take care of me whenever I visited the Philippines ,and she'd often come to Saipan to take care of me and my siblings, too. My favorite memory with my grandma would be when I was having a tantrum and threw my bracelet on the floor, but instead of yelling at me, she picked up the bracelet and held me. Personally, it's one of my core memories in my life, because patience is what I needed as a kid. When she held me, I felt sadness instead of anger, then eventually I became a happy child again. Looking back at the memory, I feel sad because I miss her so much, though I'm happy that I had a grandma who's always kind to me and my heart.

-

My favorite memory of my grandma was when I was 5 years old. My time with her was short and I had only met her once because she lives all the way in Thailand. Before I left, my grandma told me to take good care of my health and to also remember not to forget about my family. She said goodbye with a red string bracelet. I had kept it close to my heart and wore it for a long time. This was because I felt a lot of love at the time and whenever I think back on it, I still feel the love. Unfortunately, the bracelet is broken now. Still, I hold her very close to my heart and I wish I had the time to spend more moments with her to build more memories. Thankfully, my mother continues to talk about my grandma and tell stories about her past which strengthens my memory.

-

My favorite memory with my grandma was when we would sit down in the living room and just telling each other interesting things such as one of my grandma's stories that happened during the past. I felt amazed and still do at this moment. Being able to look back at it is something I would love to do all the time I get the chance.

-

My favorite memory with my grandma happened when I used to live with her in another country for school purposes. One morning she prepared hot water for my bath and made my breakfast. At the time, I remember feeling happy and relaxed. Looking back at now, I miss those times of innocence.

-

My favorite memory of my grandma were the times we would visit her in the Philippines. During our stay we would always eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner together as a family. She would always tell me how people would say that we both look alike because we both had long noses. Whenever my mom would get mad at me and try to lecture me, my grandma was always there to talk her down. Although I was an adopted child she still accepted and loved me unconditionally. As she is now happily in heaven, looking back to those memories made me sad that our time together was short, but I am beyond grateful to have her in my life. I will forever cherish the short times and memories we had together. - Jna

-

Every memory with my grandma is priceless, and I will forever cherish them. If I were to choose one, it would be her taking care of me every morning before I went to school. She ensured my hair was fixed, packed my lunch, and cooked my favorite meal, all accompanied by her loving kisses before I headed to school. My grandma is the best, and I love her dearly. Reflecting on those moments, I miss her care as I've been far away from her in the Philippines for six years. I aspire to take care of my grandma as she did for me and provide her with a good life.

-

I've always been a grandma's girl. My grandma would spoil me in all ways possible, yet instill discipline, and importance for God's presence and love in our lives. One of my favorite moments include a faint memory of me, being an elementary kid, and my mom coming home to find out that my grandma gave away all my old dolls to children living in our street. It was one of the days where me and my mom went to the mall and did not bicker throughout the whole day. We both came home shocked because we saw children outside our house, playing with toys that looked familiar to us. When we got into the house, my mom initially asked my grandma if she knew why the kids were playing outside our house, then grandma answered that she gave away all of my old toys. My mom expressed her frustration at what grandma did, and grandma's reasoning was that I already had too many dolls. They got into a loud-argument about how my mom bought all of those for me, vs. my grandma's point is that I have enough dolls to play with and that I should give away dolls I don't touch much. This memory made me more aware that there's always two sides to a story, and both can be valid. My mom's point is that she bought all those items with her money she worked for, for the sake of having her daughter enjoy it. While on the other hand, my grandma's point is to be content with what you have and show the importance of sharing. Me being a kid that time, the concept of having both sides make sense was something surprising to me. At the end of the day, it was my grandma who sat down and explained to me that there's always a point in time where you'll get tired of your current toys, and when that moment comes where you just want to hold on to it but not play with it, that's the time you give it away. Seeing other children enjoy the toys is much better than just keeping it hidden in a shelf or in a box.

-

I would visit my grandmother's home and sit at the front while she told me stories of the war. My grandmother would also teach me a few songs in Japanese.

-

A favorite memory I could recall with my grandma was when she taught me how to cook her famous fried chicken which our whole family adored. I felt honored and eager, not because I was finally able to learn the recipe but that I was able to bond with my grandma on something very sentimental. Looking back at it, I felt that day brought  me and my grandma closer together as I transitioned into teenage hood where it could get challenging at times balancing a life of school, work, and family and more importantly talking it out with family members.

-

My favorite memory with my grandmother is when she would tell me her life when she was a kid. Listening to my grandmother's struggles growing up has made me learn that I should never take things for granted and to always acquire any opportunity that is put in front of me. How I felt at the time was amazed at how far my grandmother has come to raise successful children. How I feel looking back at it now is contented, her stories have humbled me to be the successful man I am today.

-

When I was about maybe 7/8 years old, my grandmother taught me how to husk a coconut. I found that my favorite memory because it's a very traditional thing in the chamorro culture and I really enjoyed it. Looking back I wish I had asked more questions and learned more traditions but I still love that memory.

-

My grandma always made the best food and it was always so fun making it with her. Now that my grandma has passed, I cherish the memories we had with her and I hope to carry those experiences with my future grandkids.

-

My favorite memory with my grandma is when my brother and I left to go back to Saipan from his medical appointment. It was a very emotional moment for us. It has been 4 years since I have seen her and what I will never forget is that she told me before we left: "Please take care of the family and regards to your mom" in Tagalog.

-

My grandma is personally my comfort person. She lives in a different country so it's hard to visit her often. However, we make sure to visit her at least twice a year. Ever since we were young, up to now, days before we get on the plane to see her, she always asks my siblings and I one question. "What do you want to eat?" She always makes sure to prepare our favorite dishes and snacks. Almost to the point where we get tired of it! Something about her presence just makes all of us relaxed and comforted. Currently, she is going through a serious health issue, which makes it harder for us to visit her. I cherish every opportunity I get to meet her.

-

I never got to spend a lot of time with my grandma. She was away in the Philippines while I was here in Saipan. I do remember the time when I went to the Philippines and met her for the first time. I was quite shy, but she was very welcoming and wanted to get close. On the fourth day that I was there, I saw that she was cooking and decided to help. I was asking her questions about the food she was cooking. I remember asking her to teach me how to cook as I didn't know how I should start. She happily accepted and I made my first dish, which was spaghetti. For the first dish, I was worried, but it ended up being easy to make. We soon went home but after that, I started to cook different dishes. I would make my family try it and send pictures to my grandma. She would always show it off to her friends and would mention how I have to go back there so that I could cook something for her. Although she isn't here to try them now, I will always be thankful for her because she was the one who taught me how to cook. Looking back at it, I wish I wasn't so shy meeting her so that I would've been more upfront and talked to her more. Thankfully, we did become much more close, which was great.

-