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Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

I wrote this on Thursday, March 26th, 2015. The State Funeral for Mr. Lee was this past Sunday, March March 29th.

It has been an interesting week and a half.

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This week has been an emotional upheaving week.

All because of a death of someone whom I’ve never met before in person, but had such a great influence in my life, even without me being fully conscious about it.

Mr. Lee Kuan Yew, the first Prime Minister of Singapore, has passed away on March 23rd, 3:10 am, Singapore time.

I’ve never really been into politics, so to me, he was always just our Prime Minister who managed to turn Singapore from a third world country to a first world nation, together with his government and the hard working people of Singapore. That’s how I’ve always viewed him, and I am grateful for how Singapore turned out.

Because of the equal opportunities for all Singapore citizens, I was able to go to school, have a good education, and make a mark for myself in this world. I am able to hold myself up high wherever I go, because I am Singaporean.

In the past week, I’ve started to read about the man who has given so much to Singapore. I’ve also watched all the videos of the interactions and speeches he’s given.

Youtube is a wonderful thing. The accounts shared by others in their interactions with him, and articles written about him by the rest of the world. And as I read, I feel a deep sense of regret not making the effort to know more about him when I was living in Singapore and when he was alive. He was very consistent in his dealings with his people, his opponents, and with all things Singapore.

What makes me sad, and very disappointed is the onslaught of people who chose to bring up some of the more controversial things he had done while he was running Singapore at this time. At a time when a nation is mourning.

There are even people who said he should have died sooner. Why? What has the guy done other than dedicated his life to the betterment of Singaporeans and Singapore?

He may have been ruthless in the way he dealt with his opponents, and the international press… But he was consistent about it. His opponents knew what they were getting themselves into. And the world of politics and power is never about being nice and soft. I have not yet to see a successful nice and soft politician. I could be wrong, but I also do not see the need to be proven right or wrong.

What makes me sad is that this group of people are now retaliating, saying the rest of us are trying to shut them up by chiding them, telling them now is not the time to show disrespect to Mr. Lee. Saying that we are carrying on his legacy of the lack of freedom of speech.

Lack of freedom of speech? Really? How about not disguising your lack of disrespect, your disregard for our grief, our emotions, and our feelings under the category “Freedom of Speech”? How about just having that little bit of patience to put aside your lifetime grievance against Mr. Lee, just for the rest of us who are really sad about his departure?

Since you guys do not feel much for the guy, what is it to you then to hold off a little longer, just so you can give the rest of us who do feel a lot for him a more peaceful environment in which to mourn and to grieve?

So yes… I am disappointed with humanity in general this week. I am tired with all our constant need to say what we want when we want. I am tired of all the talk. I am tired of people who are selfish. I am tired of the ugly nature of us human beings. I am tired.

Till the next time I muse.

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The Aftermath

It has been almost 2 weeks since Wayne’s total thyroidectomy surgery. It was a very long 7 hour surgery, as there were some minor complications.

I will never forget that look of resignation and worry on Wayne’s countenance as he walked through the main door of the Operating Room. But 7 hours later, he came out awake, and cancer-free.

Wayne is such a trooper. He has since bounced back to full health, and has even gone back to work this Monday.

The first 3 days following surgery were long and painful.

Wayne was miserable, grumpy, and was confined in the hospital for observations. He was very impatient, and grumbled a few times on why he seem to be taking a long time to heal.

But we sat through the 3 days in that small cramped hospital room, not talking much, just watching lots of TV in each other’s company.

His healing improved dramatically after he came home. =) I guess there really is no place like home.

We are so very lucky and blessed. We have come out of this whole situation quite intact.

True, it really sucked that a wonderful guy like Wayne had to be dealt with the cancer card. But bad things happen to good guys all the time.

It is in how we deal with the bad hands that we are dealt with that our true natures, and our innate human resilience shines through.

The past 3 months have been one hell of a roller coaster ride, but it has made us stronger as a couple and a family, and we are definitely more appreciative of life and of one another.

Life is definitely more or less back to normal for us now. We have gone back to our regular routine pre-cancer.

Life goes on.

Till the next time I muse.

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Response to Anger

Sometimes, life presents moments that will leave a deep impression on us.

For me, one of those moments happened on the day I was consumed by anger and resentment with the unfairness of life.

I was walking from the Bay at Queen towards my office, going through the Queen subway station. As I entered the subway station, I heard violin music.

An old gentleman was playing his violin in the middle of the tunnel.

I fished for some loose change in my pocket, and drop it in his violin case, and went on, still consumed with my angry thoughts and resentment.

But his music became more spirited, and it stopped me in my tracks.

Something stirred in me.

I don’t know what made me take my wallet out, and fished for a note.

I walked back to him, and gave him the money.

The smile across his face… the way his eyes light up… that moment reached deep into me and pulled the humanity out of me.

And as I walked away, his music came back on, and it was very lively. And I turned back to look at him, and he was waving at me, and pointing to his violin. He was playing that music for me.

I walked away, appeased, and more at peace.

Connectedness with another, loving kindness for another being… that is the antidote to the sadness, anger, and resentment at the unfairness life sometimes throw at you.

Life can be a bitch sometimes. But we don’t have to succumb to it.

We will get out of life what we decide to put into it.

So, dear life, give me all you got. Because I will give you all I have too.

Till the next time I muse.

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Today is one of those days when I woke up, and I know that it is not going to be a good day. I woke up feeling angry, and resentful.

And everything just feels wrong, and negative.

Maybe completely overscheduling myself for the past month is finally catching up on me, and the overscheduling is finally taking a toll on my sanity.

I knew the over-busyness will come back and bite me, but how else am I going to not dwell on Wayne’s thyroid cancer diagnosis?

The past 2 months have been rough… Wayne dropped the health scare bomb on me on August 9th… I can still remember that night, as we were driving home from a kids’ birthday party, when he said he is going to see an ENT specialist on August 12th, and he thinks I should be there. I remember my reaction clearly… “Wayne, is there something about your health that you should be telling me?”

Turned out that they found a growth in his thyroid, and they are not sure what it was. That was the start of our journey in the world of thyroid cancer.

Since then, he has done his biopsy, and it has come back positive.

The thyroid surgery date has been scheduled. It will be on October 23rd. And the prognosis is good. He should be fine after the thyroid is removed, and all he has to do is take a thyroid pill every day for the rest of his life.

Even though the prognosis is good, it really still sucks. And it sucks big time. Part of me is angry… Angry that this should happen to Wayne, who despite his manly insensitivities to a woman’s emotional world, is a wonderful father, and as good a husband as he is capable of.

Why him? He has always been a healthy guy with healthy living habits… So, why him?

Bad luck. That is all the explanation that was offered. Really???

One off… Again… really? How is it that we have so many one offs? Apparently, it’s a common cancer.

Even though thyroid cancer is “the best cancer” to have in the world of cancer… it still makes me angry. It still pisses me off. Why brush it off and say it is the “best cancer” to have? What kind of a consolation is that really?????

So, yes… I am angry. I am pissed.

And I am not going to feel bad about wanting to feel angry and resentful.

I know this too shall pass… but for this one day, I am going to give in to this consuming and seething emotion in me.

Till the next time I muse.

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Wow…. the things I can dig up… the musings of my past self… 7 years have passed, and I definitely am still the same girl I was, and always will be… =)

A letter to a Singaporean soul mate, who has the same birthday as me, and we both love the song, Mirage, intensely!

Till the next time I muse.

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Thanks for the wishes… I was on vacation from December 22 till today… It has been a great, relaxing 10 days… Makes me want to get out of working even more now… =)

Don’t worry about delays in replies… I enjoy writing to you, because I write to you when I want to… not because I am expected to, or feel obligated to… And I want you to feel the same way too… It is comforting for me to know that somewhere in this world (actually back in my own motherland), there is someone who might actually appreciate and understand some of the things that my inner world goes through…

The last 3 months of 2006 was not easy for me, as I was struggling with reconciling my spiritual and material life… Not sure if I ever told you this, but I was very much brought up in a Christian environment… It was not my family religion… It was by chance… or rather by fate, that I stumble across Christianity at a very tender age… I think it was the Brownies organization… I was only in Primary Two then… But since then, I have always followed the Christian religion…

Anyway, the point that I am bringing this up is that over the last year, I started reading other philosophies, and came to discover Wicca… and somehow much of what the Wicca philosophy talks about struck the chords of my heart… Just last week, I articulated to Wayne that all my life, I have been living in a very structured world…

As a Christian, I have guidelines, and order and structure in my life… But now, when I start venturing out of the Christian comfort zone, I suddenly find myself on uncertain ground, in an unknown world, with no familiar stuff to hold on to… And that totally threw me out of whack! No wonder I was experiencing some major life upheaval… Boy, did I struggle… And there is no turning back to go back to the safe comfort zone… because it will never be the same again… You know what I mean?

I come to realize that all these musings and contemplations are part of my life’s purpose… And no matter how many times I go through phases like that, I should expect to have another one down the road… Sometimes, it’s so tiring… Coz inner struggles like that takes so much energy out of me… But I have learnt, and am still learning to be patient and kind to myself… To not beat myself up too much… (I tend to do that a lot actually! Always chiding myself for being so weak, for always being so emotional… )

Speaking of being emotional… I sometimes get so angry and frustrated with this world/society for conforming us to think that being emotional is not good… Point in case, 2 days ago, I was watching Pelletier and Sale in their 2002 Winter Olympics figure skating winning program… They were skating to the music “Love Story”, and it was just so beautiful! A work of art… So, I had tears in my eyes… and Wayne was baffled… wondering why I am so emotional…

I’ve always told Wayne that it’s only this society that makes us think that being emotional is not good… What a load of bull… I’d much rather be emotional, and be able to experience things in their full intensity, than to be a mellow, unfeeling, conforming person… But I also know that because I made this choice, I am very much not going with the flow… So, I should expect some struggles there…

But guess what… because I know that this is a choice I made, it actually made not going with the flow easier… it actually made the times that I am struggling with my emotions much easier, because I know I am choosing to live my life emotionally consciously, by my own choice… =)

Well, I am still a very young grasshopper… with a long way to go… I know I will fall, and fall again… But I also know that I will always pick myself up again, and again, and continue my journey… knowing that with each fall, and rise, I get wiser, and stronger…

Okay… so much for New Year reflections eh… =) I talk too much sometimes… =) I hope you had a great New Year… I am looking forward to getting on with 2007, as I have a feeling that it is going to be one hell of ride again… =)

Talk to you soon.

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A Long Break?

It has been more than 2 years, since I sat down to write something from the heart. Partly from lack of trying, and partly from having been sucked into the humdrum of daily life.

No other excuses.

But I also realized recently, that is okay! Life does get busy, people move on, sometimes they come back, and sometimes they don’t. And it is all okay.

That is the beauty of life.

I cannot believe how time flies. I have been a mommy for 4 years. 4 wonderful precious years. I have been blessed with a precocious boy, who brings so much joy to my life.

All those worries about terrible twos, tantrummy threes, and horrifying fours… Pfffft!

With Ethan, we sailed through Terrific 2, had oodles of fun through Awesome 3, and definitely looking forward to Fantastic 4.

My darling Ethan is turning 4 in less than a week’s time. No words can ever adequately describe the immense, heart bursting pride I have of this amazing little guy. I am just so humbled by the honor of being the nurturer of this precious little soul.

I have been consumed with the nurturing of Ethan, and have definitely forgotten about a girl that is just as important.

 The time has come for me to reconnect with my inner self. To integrate who I am now, with who I always am.

 And to lose that 30 lbs that I’ve gained from the last 2 years! =P

Till the next time I muse.

 

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We are coming close to the one year mark where Ethan was fighting for his life in Sick Kids’ Hospital. Almost a year has passed, but the memories of the 6 weeks, from the time he fell sick to the time he finally was well enough to celebrate his 1st birthday, will forever be firmly carved in me.

As I was taking a trip down memory lane, I found a post I wrote which completely broke my heart again… Tears just streamed down when I read the post, and recall the agony of watching Ethan fight for his life.

Then along came another post of hope, of love, of gratitude, and of the promise I made to cherish my brave boy. 

This post is dedicated to the preservation of those memories.

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Mar 6th, 2011, 12:23 am
 
To all who love Ethan… Thanks…

As of today, Ethan is back into the ICU… His airway is so swollen that the doctors had to put in a smaller tube than they would have for a baby his age…

Ethan had been struggling to breathe… the very mechanism required to live… And we, as his parents, stood by and watch helplessly… When we call upon for help, we were brushed aside callously for more than half a day… I was made to feel like I was kicking up a big fuss… So much for the best children’s hospital eh…

Mere words will not be able to describe the horror and the torment of standing by helplessly, watching my only son struggling, with his eyes open wide, staring crazedly and wildly… begging for us to help him, to rescue him… It was like watching him drown…

The only comfort that I have now is that Ethan is heavily sedated and is given morphine… I can only hope that it means that he is no longer in any sort of pain or suffering…

Just the thought that I have brought this child into this world only to watch and let him suffer is enough to kill me…

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Mar 18, 2011, 9:44 am

To all who prayed and rooted for Ethan… a million thanks from a very grateful mom.

Since coming home on Tuesday, Ethan has been improving slowly, but surely. He is still a little weak, but starting to crawl more, and definitely smiling a lot more without us having to coddle him.

We had 2 really rough nights (Tuesday and Wednesday) where he was screaming most of the night with his very hoarse voice, but as of last night, he had improved and calmed down so much that he was able to sleep through the night without us having to hold him from 12:30 am to 7 am… Funny enough, I wasn’t able to sleep even though he slept, as I was anticipating having to go through another sleepless night.

He is still fighting the Staph chest infection, but to quote his paediatrician… “Wow… he sure was one sick puppy… Very unlucky to have been so sick, but very lucky to be still alive!” He has seen kids who died from Staph pneumonia, and Influenza B.

Ethan is such a brave, brave boy! No words can describe the gratitude we have that he was spared from the worst outcome. And no words can describe the pride I have in him for fighting such a strong fight with the nasty viruses and bacteria.

Kids truly are very precious. In the past 11 months, I think I have taken Ethan’s good health for granted, and was a little careless at times, thereby exposing him to kids who were sick. The past 3 weeks have been a very, very hard lesson for me and hubby, but it is a lesson we have learnt hard and well… And to see a couple of parents lose their kids while we were in ICU was horrifying, and eye-opening as to how quickly kids can be taken away from us by forces we have absolutely no control over.

We will now cherish even more this little precious and courageous gem that we have been blessed to nurture and to parent.

Perhaps, the past 3 weeks have been a blessing in disguise… It has definitely shown me how strong my relationship with hubby really is, how important my family is, and most importantly, how lucky we are to have Ethan in our lives.

Thanks for reading my long post. Just wanted to share my thoughts with everyone, and to thank everyone for continually rooting for my little trooper.

Thanks so much, everyone.

Sincerely,
Denise

 

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