Another Year Goes By

It doesn’t seem that long ago when my friends and I ushered the arrival of the Dog Year. We even had an art exhibition featuring dogs. In just a few days, we would be ushering in the year of the pig.

Many many years ago when my sisters were still single, they would be back in Penang to celebrate Chinese New Year. Now that they’re all married and living in other countries, coming home is not easy; especially if you want to bring the entire brood. Anyway, what I believe is that you don’t need to wait till Chinese New Year (or Thanksgiving) to come home and see your family. (Besides, airfares will increase and restaurant prices hike up in the holiday season. Not forgetting the traffic congestion.)

Here’s hoping that you have a happy and healthy Chinese New Year. Enjoy the tiny pig I painted.

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Hidden Talents

There was a time in my life when I had to rest a lot and not do too much walking because of my knee injury. I felt horrible because I wasn’t used to lying on the bed almost every day. I missed exercising in the gym. So, I can feel what my father is feeling, not being able to do what he used to do in the past.

He used to enjoy repairing things. I recall a neighbour bringing the faulty blender to him and he went troubleshooting rightaway. He’d find a way to fix it. I consider this his natural (hidden) talent since he never studied engineering. Till today I have no clue how he managed to do electrical installations etc.

The Days in Kindergarten

I thought I’d accumulate the memories I have of my father so that when I need to read them again in the future, I won’t have a hard time retrieving information.

My colleague and I were reminiscing about our days in kindergarten and primary school. I told her that many children who are attending school today are very fortunate. They get to celebrate birthdays at school (of course, mommy dearest would have to fork out some cash for the birthday cake). They also have graduation photos (kindergarten too). On my 1st day in kindergarten, I recall my father there – with me. I recall how much I disliked going to kindy. Almost kicked my teacher too.

No, I didn’t get to celebrate my birthday at kindergarten but I liked the tiny sticker on my name tag (this is on manilla card). When we arrive, we pick that card with our name on it and place it somewhere – as indication that we’re present. The sticker on my name tag was a fairy – with a magic wand.

Double Portion

Psalm 73:26 King James Version (KJV)

26 My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

There was a time when I was very consistent in praying that God would provide me with a life partner. As my father grew older, my prayer became less consistent. When he grew even more feeble, I stopped praying altogether because I would’ve wanted my father to walk me down the aisle. Today, I’m nowhere near the aisle except when I need to walk there to prep the cables and prepare the LCD for the morning worship celebration. As for my father, he’s pretty much bedridden now.

My mother is the primary caregiver for my father. I don’t know how she does it but I’m sure it hasn’t been easy. Back when they got married, they weren’t even Christians yet but I’m watching how “in sickness in health” is being done. I salute her. Perhaps it’s rightly so that I remain single since I can’t picture myself doing the things that she’s doing. I don’t know how I would ever find the strength to do so.

I miss going to the gym after work and on the weekends. Nowadays I find myself feeling guilty because I don’t want my mom to be alone doing everything. And yet at the same time, I find myself slowly being alienated by my friends. Yes, I still want to go for dinners, meet for coffee etc… But maybe some days I just can’t do that.

Not only do I need a double portion of strength… I need a miracle.

Emotional Holiday

I had expected the holiday season to be quiet and that we have to adapt to a new kind of normal but I didn’t expect to have to call the ambulance on boxing day. He had complained of severe pain and so we called the ambulance and sent him to the hospital to be examined. But at the hospital when the doctor examined him, he said there’s no pain. It’s so difficult to tell what is real and what is not real?

Preparation

This Christmas season is tough. Yes, sometimes I struggle and I ask God why He heals some and not others. However, I know that there are some things which I will not know the answer and probably never will until the day I see the Lord. I guess this is what it means by bringing a sacrifice of praise. It’s a sacrifice because I know that we’re slowly losing him but I know that God is still good. I don’t know if I will be emotionally prepared when the inevitable happens, but I guess no matter how much one prepares, when it does happen, there will still be emotional turmoil.

This Christmas, I’m not attending any dinners or parties. I’ve not attended any for some time but even more so, this year. I will be going to a hospice to see if they can help in making him more comfortable.