This past sabbath, we had to bid a fond farewell to our friends of the past four years. The Kims moved here from Korea so that Peter could complete a smartypants master’s residency program thing for dentists at BU, and so Helen could come and be my friend and have two babies (who are American-born U.S. citizens, huzzah!) and throw parties with killer kim-bap.

On Saturday, I just kept telling Helen how much she inspired me, and I think she probably thought I was just bidding my best American Hallmark adieu, but seriously. She is good people. Peter is good people. Their kids are sweet little muffin-faced muncharoos that always share their snack packs in church. Good people, Kim family.

Peter and Helen really have It when it comes to being those super successful people who immigrate to a foreign land where the primary language spoken is not their own. They just have What It All Takes. They are incredibly positive, and such students of culture and geography and nuance. Helen especially is my hero. I would constantly see her at the most random corners of the city, just hoofing around kicking up dirt with her stroller. Of course, I am also a bit of a gypsy (or I wouldn’t also be at those random street corners), but when I, for instance, find myself at Harvard Square without my wallet and zero dollars left on my MBTA pass and no frigging clue how I am going to get home in the rain with a babe in a stroller…I can call people who work at Harvard Square who will come downstairs from their office perch and spot me $5 (thank you, Josh Poupore). Helen, on the other hand, did not have it so easy. But girlfriend was still a total intrepid. And she probably had some killer kim-bap in her back pocket to boot.

Oh and did I mention that Peter and Helen had a baby last year whose heart valves were not connected properly and totally watched a miracle named Olivia go through open-heart surgery at 2 days-old? Because they did. In a country that is not their homeland. Speaking with doctors who do not speak a lick of Korean. Operating on their daughter whom they had only just met. Today Olivia outweighs my 2.5 year-old and that is just riiiiidiculous. God’s hand has truly been at work in their lives. Their faith, their mettle has been tested so much over the past four years, but they have emerged and they have taught me so much in the process.

I think the only thing I ever taught Helen was the concept of “monster-in-law.” So naughty. You’re welcome!

Sweet Olivia and Papa Peter


Baby Girl making lovey eyes at Justin


About The Author


Kendraspondence is the personal mischief of Kendra Stanton Lee.
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