Pair Of Tickets
In "A Pair of Tickets" by Amy Tan the main character struggles because she
is dealing with feelings of resentment for her mother, because her mother never
told her of her older half sisters. She is bothered because she gets a feeling
of family that as an American she has never known. This along with the fact that
she was never told about her sisters by her now deceased mother makes her feel
as if she had never really known her. She is also depressed by the way the rest
of her family acts as if they remember her mother so well when she feels so
distant to her. Throughout the entire story the theme of family is present. The
main character feels distance from her family because they were all raised in
the traditional Chinese ways while she was raised in a much more western
environment. She is just beginning to feel Chinese herself. Tan says that"once you are born Chinese, you cannot help but feel and think Chinese"
(160). I think that to her Chinese is the family that she never knew she had.

This makes her feel resentment towards her departed mother. She feels that in
order to make things right between her and her mother she need to go and do what
her mother wanted to do and meet her long lost sisters. Even though she has
never met these sisters it is obvious that she cares for them. If she did not
care for them why would she have had her aunt write them a letter explaining
there mothers death. They are bound by this new Chinese idea of family that the
main character is now feeling because of her mothers death. The fact that her
mother never told her about her older twin sisters also bothers her. She wonders
to herself if she was a disappointment to her mother. She feels as if she had
never really known her mother now. She also feels silly for many of the things
that she said because she now knows how they must have made her mother feel. A
good example of this is the time that her mother had suggested that they go back
to China on a visit. Jing-Mei didnít want to go because of selfish reasons. If
she had known that her mother had wanted to go back not just for fun but to ease
her soul by looking for her long lost daughters her reaction probably would have
been a different one. Her mother had kept a secret from Jing-Mae that had caused
her much pain and Jing-Mae is struggling with why. The fact that she has sister
has entirely changed her view of her mother and that is hard for anyone to cope
with. She thinks that to know her mother now she needs to go meet this Skeleton
from her mothersí closet. Jing-Mae is just like anyone else that has to deal
with the shock of finding out something unusual about someone that they thought
they knew well. The skeletons from her mothersí closet scare her but she feels
that she need to face them in order to get back in touch with her departed
mother. Dealing with these feelings is also helping her to get in touch with her

Chinese ancestry. She doesnít feel like she held family as highly as her
mother had wanted her to and by getting in touch with them now she is learning
about herself and her mother at the same time.