Reader Story: The Joy of Parenting

Photo Credit: Bruno. C.

I’m a SAHM to my daughter, YS, a 5 going 6 y.o. girl in Penang. She attends a Montessori Preschool besides a weekly Di Zi Gui class (I attend a separate parents group sharing) organized by Amitabha Penang.

The following 2 incidents are what that happened recently:-

Story #1

I would describe, my daughter, YS, as a free-spirited and happy-go-lucky girl but definitely strong-willed. She doesn’t keep it in her heart regardless of what befalls her. For which I’m thankful because she had gone through some rough patches in preschool recently. Thinking I should help her cope with the mishap, mommy has been reassuring her that no matter what, mommy will always love her.

So came this phrase: “You are the best thing that ever happened to mommy.”

To which I got a reply… “You mean I’m a “thing” to you?” Of course, mommy was left speechless for a split second before I regained my composure and explained to her that it’s just an expression.

The very same evening, she was reprimanded for taking far too long to finish her dinner and as she was gurgling her mouth, she said this….”Mommy, why do you scold me? I thought I’m the best thing that ever happened to you!”

How kids nowadays know what to say and when to use back the same thing that was told to them. So I chided her, “Oh no, you mean you are just a “thing” to mommy?”

Well, kids learn fast…she added… “It’s just an expression.”

About a week later, out of the blue, she just blurted out, “Mommy, you are the best thing that ever happened to me. Aah, how my heart melted but at the same time felt so proud of her. To which mommy replied, “You mean mommy is just a “thing” to you?

Came her reply … “No, it’s just an expression.”

Story #2

With the preschool’s Year End Party approaching, it’s a tradition that parents of the graduating class will do a performance.

This year, we are organizing a medley of 2 songs for our dance and it ends with a live performance of a song with accompanying music.

So happened YS’s father was out of town, I was left with no choice but to send her up to my auntie’s house in Tanjung Bungah, the other end of the island from where we live (Bayan Lepas) and also the location we are holding our practice. The location of the practice is just 5 minutes away from where we stay. Practice was for about 1.5 hours. After which, I was very tired but drove all the way up to fetch her. On top of that, mommy missed answering her 4 calls and later on, I came to understand that her father received 10 calls too.

Anyway, upon arrival, expecting her to be cranky because of the missed calls, she was ecstatic to see me again and wanted to play kitty cat with a tired mommy. So I slumped onto the deck chair and tried my hardest to entertain her.

Then came the best part of the evening, she offered to give me a leg massage. After which she called out loud, “next patient” and went on to massage for my cousin who was sitting next to me. I have the Di Zi Gui class to thank too besides the preschool she goes for the little milestones of improvement she’s showing on her softer side – that she does put herself in other peoples’ shoes – albeit not as often as I would like it to be.

But what moved mommy so strongly was not the massage that I enjoyed but what she said to me in the car on the way home… “Mommy, do you feel better after my massage?”

What else could a mother ask for. I’m counting my blessings, definitely, for being blessed with YS as my daughter.

This post is submitted by a PW reader. Junny Cheong is a stay-at-home mother from Penang, Malaysia.

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