#127 – Where Has My Daughter Gone?

L is usually a darling sweetheart who is loved by everyone she meets. But this day, she seemed to be a different person. She ran into the lift without waiting for me and when I admonished her, she did not ant to have any eye contact with me.

Before entering the house, I wanted to “settle the unfinished business” with her but she kept running away. To avoid creating a scene outside, I got her into the house to talk some sense into her. And it continues…

Not only did she run away from me, she kept humming tunes to “shut my voice” out. It was so annoying! When I held onto her, she even talked back at me! I couldn’t believe my ears and I was utterly shocked at her defiance. I smacked her hand twice but she didn’t seem to be afraid of the punishment. When it happened again, I smacked the back of her hand really hard and that’s when she started crying. I also then got to know that she lied to me regarding finishing the worksheet that I asked her to do the night before.

I was really disappointed and at the same time, furious. I threw the worksheets out of the front door and asked her to finish it outside before coming back in. She was wailing by then. I allowed her to come in but only at the doorstep. She had to finish it there. Let me qualify why I did what I did: I would be totally fine if she had told me that she needed more time to complete the worksheet. I got really upset cos of her lie and bad behavior. To me, that’s totally unacceptable.

When S came home at that time, he started another round of scolding and L, crying. Another punishment for her; she was not allowed to play with her toys until we said so. S also did not bring her out for a promised bus ride. He did not want to bring her out for dinner with my family and not allow her to sleep with us that night. Upon advice from my sister who’s a specialist in early childhood, we took her to dinner as that’s bonding time with family. We also allowed her to sleep with us cos we took the opportunity to revisit what happened that day and to “right” her from wrong.

#124 – A’s First Trip

Given A’s “cry baby” nature, I had to convince S to let me bring A along to our annual family trip to Hong Kong. S is worried that he will cry his lungs out on the flights and hence cause attract unnecessary stares from other passengers. I told him that yes, he may cry but it’s also a good chance to train him to be more sociable and get used to strangers. So I promised to train him before the trip so that he’s used to large crowds and not be so “cowardy” in terms of “stranger anxiety”.

The daily trips downstairs proved to work. I guess the constant exposure made him more comfortable of “non-threatening” strangers and now he merely stares at them instead letting it all out by crying. Mind you, his cries can be deafening and you wouldn’t want to be near him when that happens.

So he behaved well during the flights and all I can say is that I’m just so glad that it worked out fine. The only thing was that, with two babies in tow, I didn’t get to go to my usual shopping pilgrimage hunts at all. But well, all was worth it when I saw the smiles on both L’s and A’s faces at Disneyland. I can see that the kiddos and the oldies (my in-laws were on the trip too) were happy during the trip. That’s what matters most.

#120 – Roughing It Out In Coach Class

A few days before we took off, S wanted to upgrade the flight to business class. After finding out the absurd premium that we have to top up (not to mention the tedious, multiple conversations I had with SIA and SAS), I managed to convince him that we will do just fine roughing it out in coach class for the 30-hour journey (especially since we do not have kids travelling with us). I managed to get us a 2-seater and all went well.

During one of the 3 connecting flights (we flew Singapore/Copenhagen/Oslo/Tromso), the connection time was only 40min and the flight was delayed. We prayed hard and literally had to run like crazy to the other terminal after collecting our bags and re-checking them in. Luckily, we made it. What a close shave.

On arrival, we treated ourselves to a fabulous meal at a local restaurant. We had lunch but it felt as if we were having dinner since the sky was dark already. They served the best duck confit and of course, the bottled artic water was ever so sparkling and fresh and thirst-quenching. It was, indeed, THE best meal cos we did not have anything (nothing came close unfortunately) as yummy thereafter.

 

#119 – My Bucket List

It has always been my dream to see the Aurora Borealis. But because it takes some degree of planning and I’m too lazy to do it, I never get to fulfil this wish (until now, that is). S knows that and he did the planning and booking excitedly, which was rather rare given that he’s never been much of an activator.

We opted for private tour that is focused more on nature and sight-seeing; and the overseas agency “Off The Map” did a great job in planning the itinerary. Some of the activities planned include whale watching in the fjords, kiss by the wolves, sami tent visit, scenic train ride, dog-sledding, ice hotel and of course nightly chase of the Northern Lights.

We booked our own flights and everything else was like on “remote control”. When we were on the flight there, we prayed that the planned trip would work out fine (as in the drivers and tour guides will come as they were supposed to at the stipulated timings). We were especially pleased that Norwegians and Swedes are really honest and trust-worthy folks. Everything worked like clock works and we had a fabulous trip. Oh, did I mention that it’s a trip for just us two? It has been 6 years since our honeymoon trip!

 

#118 – Remembering Father (again)

I just saw someone who resembles father quite a bit. The brows, gaze, cheeks, hairline, dress sense, the way he sits and walks and gestures “thank you’. Everything of him makes me think of father, except for his eyes, narrower face and nails. I can’t help but keep staring at him. My heart ached but yet skipped a beat.

Then shortly after this encounter, on a separate occasion, L commented again that yi ma’s daddy is in heaven. Every time she mentions him, I feel sad and have the aching pain in me.

Then I would tell her that Gong Gong would have loved to play with her cos she’s so cute n playful. And to that, she replied, “I’d like that.” That’s enough to put a smile on my face.

#115 – Explaining Death to a 3-Year Old

L asked me if I’ve a father and a mother and I replied yes, of course. So I started explaining the family tree to her. My mother is Popo. She then asked about my father. I said my father is Gong Gong and he is in heaven. She said why? Told her that he was old, fell sick, passed away and went to heaven. She paused for a long time and we chatted about other things.

Then suddenly she said Gong Gong is in heaven. I was like….yes I know, we are talking about the same person. She asked if he’s there to meet his friends n I said yes. Then she asked who his friends are and I said his sister is one of them.

I explained further that when he passed away, he lives in our heart. Just as quickly but definitely after much considered thought, she asked when all of us die, whose heart do we live in. Coming out from a 3-year old plus girl, I think it’s pretty amazing.

She’s perceptive and is trying to understand abstract concepts. I guess death and divorce are difficult concepts for children.

 

#111 – L’s Funny PD

It was holiday period and S decided to put some nail stickers on L’s tiny nails. L wanted to show Dr Low (L’s pd) her nail stickers but she was shy when she was in his room. I helped her express her desire for him to check out her nail stickers and the PD then used his medical torch to look at/examine them. The sight was kinda funny. 🙂