I am currently nursing a throbbing headache as I type.It has been a while since I last blogged. Ohwells, it is the summer holidays in Singapore and my days have been so packed ever since we landed.
The heat and humidity in Singapore is uncomfortably real. I see my fellow Singaporeans looking zen, with make-up and clothes that look more suitable in cooler climates searching for Pokemons on the streets. On the other hand, I stare at my reflection- a 30+ year old, perspiring like mad from the heat, hair tied up in a messy bun, dressed in my drabby looking shorts and tee-shirt, searching for my oasis, somewhere with a functioning AC.
Singapore is still the same ol’ bustling city, with so many things and events going on. Everyone is busy with something that is quantifiable. On more than one occasion, I found myself questioning my purpose, on whether I should be doing something more productive and maybe going back to work?
As a mother of 3, I noticed that sending children for enrichment classes and tuition is a norm. Gone are the days where arcades, game stores and shops selling unique trinkets occupied the top floors of heartland malls. These time-wasters and trivialities are replaced by purposeful learning centres, teaching art, music, academic subjects and whatnots, selling the idea of accelerated learning and success. Ryan’s peers in Singapore are attending a number of enrichment classes weekly in art, music, reading, abacus and Mandarin. In my typical knee-jerk reactions, I just want to drop everything I have in London, return to work in Singapore, so as to afford these enrichment classes for the children.
I worry so much in the past 3 weeks.
Maybe I haven’t been blogging about this because when I do blog my thoughts out, they sort of becomes ‘real’ to me? Like these are not vapid imaginations clouding my mind resulting from boredom. But maybe issues that E and I should think through more thoroughly so as to be accountable for the next 5 years of our family life with the children?
I only start to feel better when I shared my worries with E and a very smart friend of mine, Debbie who reminded me that I am possibly the best care-giver(and educator) to the children at this point in time. My training as a teacher is not in vain and I can add value to their learning. (I was even previously tutoring children at Ryan’s level to prep them for primary school!) In some way, I think I am like a trend-follower and maybe weak minded to a certain extent. If not for people like E and Debbie, it would be incredibly easy for me to get caught up in any sort of race and end up in despair because it is not what I truly want to do.
Last night, E sent me photos of Ryan’s certificates that he received from the school in the mail. Ryan is awarded Outstanding Achievement in Math and the teacher did have positive things to share about his learning. This news lifted my otherwise low spirits. The school that Ryan is enrolled in is wonderful and his teachers are dedicated and enthusiastic in helping the children learn.
This holiday, I have been rather lazy and laid back in the children’s learning.. Perhaps, it is time to start the gears running again. Slowly, of course. The children have been really enjoying their time in Singapore with the family and friends. The community, the support and familiarity that we have in Singapore is just priceless.
Family and friends have been asking when we will be returning to Singapore for good? Honestly, I don’t know. The past few years feel like the lost and amazing years. Lost because by Singaporean definition, I took time off work to dedicate my life to rearing 3 young children. I spend my days doing mundane duties, serving the family members. I lose track of time and even my appearance. Amazing because of the children, because I get to spend time with them. The children are able to read my response from my face and tone. They know that I love them even when I reprimand them. To put it simply, they get me. Sometimes, more than E does. The connection that I have with them would be different if I was a working mother, with my mother helping and a helper. It might be a good type of different since we would have more money to spend. By an equal measure, it could be disastrous especially so when the kids fall sick and I can’t be there for them.
The heat will inevitably be there upon our return to Singapore.
Is there something along the lines of letting go and letting God? Yea, I really got to let go, worry less and trust more in God’s plans for me and my family. Maybe I should really enjoy more of these lost and amazing years before reality