A Mother's Hopes and Dreams
I remember the first time I held you in my arms. It felt like a dream and I couldn’t take my eyes off you.
Just a year before, I held your older brother in my arms.
I had to say goodbye in 5 hours because there was nothing more the doctors could do to save him. A few months later, Mummy had a miscarriage.
Looks like the third time was really the charm.
As a baby, you were HUGE.
Like 4.1kg HUGE. I remember the doctors telling me you were the second heaviest baby born in Singapore at the time. Yet, you looked so small wrapped up in a bundle of white cloth like a belated birthday present from God.
Because of your size, Your Papa and Ahkong (especially your Ahkong) loved cuddling you because you didn’t feel “as fragile as the other babies”. You were quite the screamer too. I remember all too well those nights trying to get you to sleep very vividly.
You’d scream your head off the first year you came home and Mummy was pulling out her hair figuring out how to soothe you. You know, I tried everything. I bought you toys, carried you, and fed you but you never stopped crying at night.
One night, you were crying again and Mummy woke up thinking you were hungry. After drinking two bottles of milk within minutes, you went back to square one and started screaming at the top of your lungs again.
Believe me when I say I was desperate. I burst out in tears and switched on a Don Moen CD. Immediately, you fell sound asleep to his music. It was almost ridiculous! But I never had a problem with your cries at night again. Unless you wanted three bottles of milk.
As a child, you were lovely, charming, and intelligent.
You started speaking at a young age, and you had me and your Papa speechless at times. You weren’t necessarily rude, but you’d question everything and anything. You had a sense of humour, you cared deeply about the people around you, and you were adored whenever you walked into a room.
However, you were also a handful.
Naturally, you were extremely mischievous and playful. Remember that one time you took raw eggs out of the kitchen? You’d run out of the kitchen with raw eggs, and threaten to throw them at me. Just as I was about to turn my back, the eggs would splatter all over the wall.
There’s never a dull moment with you in the house. You brought so much light and life to every room you walked into. I think you get it from me though.
As a teenager, you started talking less. We grew apart a little.
I admit it was hard to come to terms with the fact that you needed a little more independence. To me, you’ll always be my little baby boy. It killed me when we would shout at each other and say hurtful things.
There were times when Mummy said things and did things that she never meant. But because of my pride, I didn’t apologise often.
Still, it was such a pleasure walking you through your teenage years. I mean besides the attitude, cold wars, and arguments - I still saw the young man you were turning out to be.
Things must’ve been tough when we lost Papa all of a sudden. I didn’t know how to raise you up, and the more scared I was, the more control I would exert over you. I knew you didn’t like it, but I didn’t know what else I could do.
Although we had our moments, it was reassuring to see you growing up to be the man of the household. When I stand next to you and Didi, I feel very safe - like I’m between the Petronas Twin Towers.
You just turned 23 earlier this month and I am so proud of the man that you’ve become.
You’re kind and loving even if you pretend to be tough and gruff.
You’re attentive whenever I tell you about my day at work.
You still have that charming yet cheeky smile on your face whenever you tease me about getting remarried (for the hundredth time, I am NOT going to remarry. Your Papa was good enough.)
When I look at how you’ve turned out, I cannot claim the credit alone. Raising you took more than human hands. I am so glad that God has answered my prayers to father you and guide you in this adventure of life.
Son, you will always be precious in my sight. I thought I gave up my hopes and dreams when I had children. But little did I realise, that you and your Didi were the greatest gifts I could ever hope for or dream of. Both of you are now my hopes and dreams.
I am sure that Papa and Ahkong are smiling down on you from heaven above.
We love you so much!
Published on 05/06/2021