How My Mom Won Me in a Card Game

Aug 12

How My Mom Won Me in a Card Game

One of my favorite sites on the web is reddit, a community of users who share links to stories and other types of content. The community also often asks each other questions in order to get to know one another. Recently a redditor posted the general query, “Were you an ‘oops’ or were you planned?” I said, “My mom ‘won’ me in a card game.” Sure enough, someone followed up with, “There’s got to be a more extensive story behind this. Let’s hear it.” Well, here it is.

I’m often blissfully unaware of exactly how weird my mom was (is) when we were growing up, but since I’m the baby of the family, my siblings are all too eager to supply me with details I’d quite frankly be happier knowing nothing about. My oldest sister is the worst of the bunch — since she’s 11 years older than me, she remembers all sorts of horrors I was too young to know about, the story of my conception being one of them.

According to what she can recall, my mom really wanted to have another baby but my dad was on the fence about it. At the time they were living with my grandparents because they had just sold the restaurant they used to own/run, and both of my parents were jobless. Since they already had three little mouths to feed, my dad wasn’t too thrilled about adding to a family they were already struggling to take care of.

They went back and forth about it for a while and ultimately quite inexplicably decided to settle the matter with a game of cards. Whoever won the game would get to decide whether or not they’d have another baby. As luck would have it, Mom won. (Note that I have no idea what card game they played — for all I know, my mom made my dad play some obscure Korean card game with nonsense rules she’d make up on the spot just to sway the win in her favor. “No, I have a seven and a three. It means I win this hand!”)

The rest is history. I was conceived at my grandparents’ farm house (another detail I didn’t need to know) and came into the world nine months later on a hot Saturday in August. Mom later referred to me as her lucky baby — after she got pregnant with me, my dad found a temporary job, my family moved out of my grandparents’ house into a place of their own, and eventually my dad got a job with Chrysler.

And that’s how my mom won me in a card game. She’s a sneaky one, that Korean.

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