The story of 80-HD.

Let me tell you a story, a story of a boy who have world-class imagination, boundless energy; constantly rock the things that he’s passionate about, and a heart deep full of love and empathy.

At around 5 years old, his parents got complaints from teachers that he could not sit still in class, constantly wandering around and conducting mischiefs with his classmates. Sometimes he will have emotion outburst,  there was one occasion where his temper flare and he made a huge dent in his school’s partition wall by kicking on it. He also display impulsivity where he stick a pencil into the air cleaner at his kindergarden and his mom needed to pay the fees for the repair.

Thinking that the school environment was not suited for him, his parents decided to switch him to a stricter disciplinary kindergarden, in hoping that his attitude and behavior would change for the better before he enters Primary 1. Things did not get better, although there were fewer complaints from the teacher, but he started to dislike school. He was verbal bullied due to his emotional breakdown and his sensitivity. At home, his family couldn’t grasp the way he act and hence he got labelled as: Disobedient, Misbehave, Difficult, Disruptive. Exact word from his dad: “He’s just so hard to be Loved.”

Entering Primary 1, homework load piled up, responsibility increased. He started to show challenges in coping with school task, especially Math. Due to his inability to focus, he’d become frustrated and starts crying uncontrollably whenever he’s doing his worksheets. He can never finishes his task, and his mom just can’t quite figure out what’s going on until one day when she sits down and to do the homework with him, after exhausting all sorts of disciplinary methods. Turns out, this boy can’t focus! He was in a daze throughout and constantly lost track of what he was doing just seconds ago. Needless to say, his mom knew that something’s not quite right. Thanks be to God, this boy had an insightful Math tuition teacher who suggest that there’s a possibility that this boy have what’s call ADHD. That was in April 2019.

It’s been a year since we discover that JH have Attention Deficit Hyperactive Delightfulness (ADHD). It was a year of learning – learning to discover our true self, learning to accept differences, learning to embrace shortcomings (& gift) and learning to love unconditionally, both for my husband and myself. And I’m so so thankful for this year, that makes us realised that we can turn disability into superpowers, just like 80-HD, a robot character of Dogman that was created to reflect ADHD.

Dear JH, if you read this, know that we are so proud of you. It’s been difficult, knowing you have to put twice or thrice the effort, in order to conform to society’s expectation. Continue to be who you are, we will do whatever it takes to guide you to do good with your superpower; to use your imagination and make a change in this world, to think differently so you’re able to leave the world a better place. Love you lots.

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Uncertainties.

Hiya, How’s everyone doing? I still wake up feeling like everything is not real. D7 into MCO and I still can’t phantom this covid-19 virus that’s causing a global pandemic and a worldwide lockdown. About a month ago, I was struggling with the work on hand, lamenting with hubbs on challenges and hurdles as well as our local political landscape that have in a way create anxiety and frustration; Right now, I’m just grateful that I still get have a job when this whole ordeal is over.

I’m just so very grateful for this whole partial lockdown ordeal. It’s like God have given me a full 14 days to spend with my kids, something that I would never do as we’re busy chasing the business of life. I hope the kids will always remember this bonding memory that we share.

It’s been an enlightening period for self realisation, to appreciate the luxury of having abundance and not taking it for granted, ever.

It’s putting a pause in the midst of chasing busyness and ticking every daily check list. Instead allow time to slow down and appreciate the joy of doing the most basic things. It gave me the opportunity to make everyday a good day, to indulge in simple joy, slowing down and living the moment.

It’s about learning how to embrace uncertainties, to brace through things you never see coming.

It’s about realising what truly matters.

They say every dark cloud have a silver lining, and there’s always light at the end of the tunnel. I’m grateful for this humbling feeling and I know we will look back reevaluation of our lives, to realise what truly matters.

2020: A start or the end?

photo6228891856100501923With all the global emergency crisis going on, 2020 started off rather brutal: Australian bush fire, floods in Indonesia and Malaysia, Taal Volcano eruption, Corona-virus, and the latest Thailand’s mass shooting.

Reading this headlines daily just sent quivering chills to my spine. In a split second, everything change – Lifestyle, economy, productivity down to basic survival needs such as food and water. Put you in perspective isn’t? Now I can’t imagine wasting away my days. There’s so much to do and see. So much to live for. So much to love. I just want to hold them tight and soak up every moment.

 

About Cars and Memories

Last night… JH said his friend drew him something, and he wanted to reciprocate by drawing her something back. Typically, he drew something (that he like) instead of his friend like. He said he wanted to draw various car logo (he just leaned recently because dada is working on automobile project at the moment). Suddenly he ask if I know how to draw a Perodua logo, so I did what I know best and sketch him something and he said: “ No mommy, Perodua logo doesn’t look like this.” Out of his disappointment suddenly he remembered ‘he’s-got-a-free-merchandise-perodua-pencil-that-he-got-sometime-in-2016-somewhere-in-his-pencil-case-inside-his-school-bag’. And so off he went to retrieve the pencil and continue with his logo sketch. Seconds later, he came to me asking what is the brand of a car logo that looks like an ‘arrow’? I was perplex, this Car thing is really not my area of expertise!!! I did my best by searching on the web I just couldn’t resolve it so I told him to wait for dada.

Hubbs came home and immediately answer his question, and this is what he drew:

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Sure it’s no big deal to be able to draw this but I’m more amazed with the visual memory of this offspring of mine. He remembered he’s got this pencil from ages ago, and he remembered an arrow shaped logo even after just one look. Also I’m appalled with embarrassment for not knowing how to draw a Perodua logo even though I’ve been staring at it almost everyday ever since I started driving. Tsk tsk tsk….

Oh my JH, thank you for enlightening and teaching me even if it’s the smallest thing. Love you lots.

 

Sometimes.

photo6105053041125337740Sometimes, I tend to forget, that’s he’s just a kid.
Sometimes, I tend to be too hard on myself.
Sometimes, I’m just filled with self-inflicted mom-guilt.
Sometimes, I contemplate whether I’m doing it right.
Sometimes, I wonder if I’m doing enough.
Sometimes, I over worried.
Sometimes, I’m scared, fear of failing my children.

Many times, I just need to remind myself to find joy in the imperfect now. Parenting is about being in the present (with your children), grasp hold of what matters (of your children) and connect (with your children). I’m still working on it.

Taking it slow.

photo6097882683418978577I had it all planned out  – picnic with the kids in the morning, get brunch at Ikea cafe, fruits and milk powder shopping and dinner with a friend. Then at 6am, I woke up to hubbs just coming back from work. That’s when I decided to just take it slow for the day. Coincidentally we’re taking a pause in all of JH’s classes.

I took time to indulge in my fav book after a quick yoga, prep breakfast & lunch, clean the house, did homework with JH, watch Cars 3 with the kids, catch an afternoon map and even make some snowflakes!

As far as i remember ever since I have kids, my day had been non-stop full. So, this becoming unbusy and taking it slow for the day is actually quite enjoyable.

Back to School.

photo6084553196581267885Today, when I drop off JN at school, I hand her breakfast bento and gave her the normal goodbye kiss and hug, right when she was about waltz into her usual eating spot, out of surprise, she was ushered to another room by the teacher, simply because she’s in N2 this year (N2 is for 4 yo kids).

At that moment, I was awestruck by bittersweet moment. Since back from our family holiday, I was so caught up in preparing her brother’s school supply and school routine that I totally forgotten that my little baby girl is entering into a new school age as well. Her new classroom is lined with proper study table and teaching board, the sight of her sitting next to her classmate Zoey just made me wanna cry! GahhhhHHhhh! My baby is growing up too fast!!!

My sweet sweet Junna, I hope you will continue to be who you are – Fun, Adventurous and Bubbly. Mommy can’t want to explore the world with you through learning. I love you so much.

Pics above was her first day of school 18 months ago.

Reading, lately.

Reading Million Dollar Whale is just like train wreck that you know it’s coming, but no one is there to stop it. Every page you flip, you keep seeing dollar sign in millions and billions, so much so that you can’t keep up. That’s how much money that was wasted, which could have used to built multiple schools, hospitals and developing the country. As I flipped the pages, it just unfathomable how this modern heist could have happen here, in my home ground. It’s as thrilling as reading ‘Bad Blood‘.

Reading Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End, was quite thought provoking and it was an emotional roller coaster read. I first started this back in October 2018, I couldn’t finish it as it got too depressing. Simply put, the book is about Dying, but on one’s own term. Gawande argues that healthcare and medical treatments ultimate goal is not to prolong survival, but rather it should focus of the quality of life. Definitely not an easy read, but this book perturb me to think deeply about the choices we will all faced as our body aged and our mind breaks down.

Reading The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living, was light and cosy (my son’s current favourite word 🙂 ). Apart from getting introduced a more in-depth Danish lifestyle, this books reminds me to appreciate the small things in life. Everyday we were caught up in the ins and outs of life and you tend to forget to enjoy the little things. Some things just worth reminding and this book did just that.

 

 

 

 

Sharing.

IMG_20190317_212658_358Upon hearing our dear friend’s sis passing, I was caught at a situation where I have to share and explain the news to JH, since he knows our dear friend. He said: “It’s okay, I can share my sister with aunty Jody, then she’ll have a sister again.” I shed a tear. I gave him a big tight hug. He might not know the true meaning of life and death but his heart of gold makes me so proud to be his Mama! This boy’s compassion is through the roof!

If only we can share our loved ones…

 

Parenting.

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The festive week had passed and we’ll be back to work/school tomorrow. During this whole week where I’m with the kids 24/7, I’ve noticed behavioral issues, especially with JH. He’s constantly ignoring our instruction, talk back, whines and complain about Every.Single.Thing. My irritation towards my him have reached a record high. I just feel so defeated all the time.

About a year ago, we’ve come to realized that he’s a sensitive kid and we’ve been cautiously telling ourselves that we need to customize our parenting to suit his expressive emotional behavior. Clearly, not being strict enough seems to be the root cause of all that awful behavior now. The worse thing is his little sister is imitating all those bad manners/action and it just drives my nuts! Both of them are very blessed in that they haven’t had many stresses or struggles in their life. And I’ve beginning to think JH is at the age where he needs to understand that he can’t take things for granted. He needs to earn it, whether it’s TV time, toys, play time or anything that he desires. That’s when I realized I need to pull my shit together and be a better parent if I want to raise them up as solid, reliable, well-grounded and capable kids.

I do not want to give excuses for his sensitive-ness for bad behaviour. That’s why I’ve decided to stop coddling him. Tough love it is for him as much as it breaks my heart sometimes. I’m worried if I don’t correct him now, it’ll be too late. The last thing we want is to let his sensitivity and emotional baggage kept him away from all the lost opportunity.

Things finally got better at the end of the day when hubbs told me he had finally passed his swimming exam to advance to the next level (after 15 months!). It gave me a vision of the lights at the tunnel somehow. And I finally realized how much effort I need to invest in my kids to ensure they are brought up well into fine person.

Bitter. Sweet. Boiling temper. Melted heart. This parenting thing is so bloody tricky.