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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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:

Capture

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.

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.

 

 

 

 

 

Kids update 2019.

Happy new year!
We had been busy catching up with friends and spending time with the family. My kids are now aged 6.5 & 2.5 year now I feel these are the best years yet! Though they bicker/fight/argue a lot (like every 5 mins), I told myself to cherish these moments before it slipped by.

JH just enter Primary 1 and all are new and charming to him. He’s been conversing a lot of interesting topic and thoughts, though we’re still figuring out ways to manage his sensitivity. But all in all, he’s a bright & lovely kid.

Surprisingly, he did pretty okay with his first week at school. No tears, no tantrums and rejection. In fact, I had taken a day off on the first day of school, he’s assured me that he doesn’t need me to be there. When I keep asking him if he knows which gate to go to after school to wait for his transported, his response was: “I know mommy, you’ve said that many times already!”.

D1 – he forgot to bring out his snacks that we prepare for him during break time.
D2 – he forgot to pass the immunization form to his class teacher.
D3 – he forgot to bring his shoes down, as he was pressing the lift button for me. Also this day, we wrote a ‘to do list’ & stick it in his pencil box., so that he’ll remember to: 1. pass the immunization form to his class teacher; 2. show the receipt of the books that I have already purchased to teacher; 3. bring out his food during snack time.

Junna started potty training on 24/11/2018. She started slow, as we weren’t home much. So after a few weeks of hit & miss, on 15/12/2018m she successfully peed 7 times in the potty all by herself! I was really taken by surprise. Started diaper-less at school on 2/9/2018. Gah…. they really are growing up fast!

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Little things that I want to ingrain in my memory:

  1. Eating fruits together on our wooden floor. I will feed them alternatively while they play/chat/read.
  2. Lullaby songs (sound track include:
  3. Bed time stories.
  4. Family hugs.
  5. When both of them kiss me good night on the cheeks together.
  6. Putting hair gel/powder on like it’s a big thing.

This year, I want to do more of the above and add on the list. I also want to spend more one on one time with each of them so they’re able to get our undivided attention. I try to see pass the everyday bickering/whinging/fighting/shouting and soak in all the other sweet moments instead. I particularly remember one Saturday rainy evening and the kids went cycling/scooting at the covered courtyard at our condo. Moments like this is so rare and magical and my heart grew SO big watching them playing together.

Restart.

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I’m not gonna lie. First stint of being a full-time working parents, I felt like everything is falling apart. Work’s deadline, mining a pet project, juggling a new daily routine with the kids, scheduling and more scheduling. All hell broke loose when Junna fell sick, then Ju-Hann. I just felt overwhelming at the moment. Then I browse through the photos in my mobile phone and it hit me. I choked up. These babies of mine are no longer babies. I need to focus on life instead of being petulant about it. I recollect myself and I press the restart button and remind myself: I’m so ehhfing blessed to have these two in my life.

Dose of Happiness.

IMG_20171212_134930_193Yesterday was Selangor’s PH, so hubbs brought along our eldest to drop me off at work. As usual, the little one get super excited as soon as he steps into my office, (he have a thing of going to mommy’s and dada’s work place). The whole 3o minutes he was there, he can’t stop babbling and asking questions to fellow gor gor, ceh ceh and uncles (my colleagues).

Things he does include:

  • Walking up and down the staircase
  • Swing his feet by the mezzanine floor
  • Looking at the finishes in the studio
  • Got uncle Keith to draw him a Darth Vader and a Batman
  • Asking for food and drinks.
  • Exploring the gigantic plotter printer

It’s so good to have a good dose of happiness before I start my day at work!

Little Prayers.

IMG_0117For as long as I can remember, we had taught JH to say a prayer before he goes to sleep when he are able to speak in sentence. It started with “Dear God, please bless dada, mommy, JH to be happy & healthy, amen.” (We did ask him to add JN in the prayers after her birth). Then he starts school and we start getting complains from teacher about his mischievous act and we made him add a second prayer: “Dear God, please bless JH to be a good boy, amen.” Unless he’s not well, it’s been a tiny little routine that he does every single night before he goes to sleep. (Apart from making sure he choose a toy to sleep with him every night 😂).

But tonight, I made him says a 3rd prayer, saying thanks for his little cousie who came all the way from New Zealand, also made him promise God that he will be kind and gentle and share his toys with little Ru. Soon after he said: ‘Mommy, I want to see God, how come we never see God before?’ For a moment, I was stunned and speechless. My mind was scrambling trying to come out with simple explanation about how God look like and where He lives and why we are not able to see Him because He’s beyond greatness etc… I briefly explains that God is a whole lot bigger than us human and therefore He lives in heaven where its vast and huge therefore prohibits us from being able to see Him. But He lives within us and provide us every day with invisible things like power & strength such as for the construction worker to build the skyscraper; for the forklift truck to lift the heavy loads; for the road roller to built skyways and roads. (I have to use construction related materials as that’s his favourite thing in the world, apart from dinosaurs). He nodded indicating that he understand, though I can sense he was a tad disappointed knowing that he can’t meet God.

My dear JH, mommy and dada might not appear to be an enthusiastic temple or church goer, but we are a believer in God. It is with God’s grace that we have you, and your little sister, our family, a roof above our head and so much other abundance that filled our life along the way. Your name JH in fact means ‘God is gracious’ in Hebrew. We want you to know that all religion promotes good values, kindness and grace. We want you to respect the differences of each human being whether it’s race, religion or culture. Hopefully you will grow up one day, learning the ways of God and be the good you want to see in this world.