The Ph.D life of a mom in the era of Covid-19!
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I decided to pursue my doctoral program in Korea when my son turned 3 years old. To be honest, it took me a long time to think about this decision because it was really difficult for me to live far from my son. Since I gave birth to my son, I had not left him just for a day. In the beginning, my husband encouraged me that I would only go to Korea for 4 months, then I would come back with my son for 2 months before I started a new semester. I thought 4 months were not too long, so I decided to go. I arrived in Korea in September 2020. These first days were extremely terrible for me. Not only was I stressed because of my new life, new environment, new way of studying and working, but I also missed my family a lot, especially my son. My heart seemed to be broken when my son called me. He cried a lot, and he said that he wanted me to come home with him, and he wanted to hug me. Every day was a long day with me, I used to fall asleep in tears. I always thought that when the vacation came, I would be back with my son.
After that, the situation of the Covid-19 pandemic in the world became more and more serious, the government of my country stopped all international flights. As a result, on my first holiday, I could not come back home with my son. Then, I looked forward to the second holiday on this June when the vaccine had been more widely available. Unfortunately, at that time the Covid-19 pandemic broke out in my country and became more and more serious. Therefore, I could not come back with my son on my second vacation. The upcoming winter break is my third vacation since I have arrived in Korea and most likely I still won't be able to go home with my kids. Honestly, there isn't a day that I don't look forward to the moment when I return to my country and tightly hug my baby son. Just thinking about it always makes me unable to hold my tears.
Since the day I left my family to Korea, my son has been my biggest motivation. Every day he calls me when he wakes up in the morning, at lunch, dinner, and after dinner, he will study with me in around 1 hour. Many people told me that if I live far from my son for too long, he will forget me because he is too young to remember me. Fortunately, I believe that will not be my story because I know that I still play an important role with my son. Every day when he has new toys or delicious food, he always calls to show me. When I'm sad about something he's doing, he'll change his behavior immediately because he does not want me to be upset. Seeing him grow up every day, healthy and obedient, I am very happy and proud of him. As a mother, the thing that I regret the most is not being able to stay with him every day. So far, I have almost finished ½ of my Ph.D journey. I hope that the world will quickly overcome the Covid-19 pandemic, and my family will be reunited soon.
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