Sunday, November 9, 2008

My Mum My Hero ...

So I mentioned my late Mum in my earlier post this morning. Couldn't help it ... the cherished moments with her flooded back.

People normally said "My Dad My Hero" but to me, Mum's my Hero. If not for her, I am not what I am today, neither am I where I am today. As I was the baby of the brood, I was naturally the closest to her. She asserted a lot of values and principles in me. Of course during that point in time, it was in one ear and out the other.

Mum never really had it easy in life, not ever since she had to marry my Dad during the Japanese Occupation. You see, it was not safe for any young women during that period. She was from a well-to-do westernised family while my Dad's the typical conservative Chinese family. She suffered abuses both from my Dad and my grandmother. But she held her head high. As my Dad was not one who cared for the family, she did whatever necessary like washing people's clothes, house-cleaning, selling fried noodle, baby-sitting, to ensure food on the table and for our schooling, plus her extended family. She single-handedly raised 5 children on her own. In later years, when my Dad suffered a stroke and was bedridden, Mum dutifully took care of him for more than 10 years.

She was very particular about getting sufficient education for all of us. I still remember her story, how she had to sit outside the classroom under the blazing sun just to ensure that my brother does not run away from class. How she had to plead with the school principal of an elite missionary school to enrol my brother. Then during my school days, she would always play the tontine to ensure she had sufficient savings when my examination fees and school books are due.

Well, Mum may not have had the chance to have an education herself, but she had the determination that her children must have. It was her sheer determination that gave us our future today.

It's been 5 years since she's left us due to stomach cancer. No one can turn back the hands of time. I only wish I had been a little more loving, understanding and kinder to her when she was still with us.

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