Mothers’ Day

When KR was about to enter the operating theatre during the PSARP, a verse in Isaiah spoke to me. 

As a Mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you… Isaiah 66:13 

I was carrying KR in my arms and trying to rock him to sleep as calmly as I can before handing him over to the Anaesthetist. 

Sniff. Sniff. .sshhhhh shhh 

The imagery of the Lord cradling me in His arms and comforting me as I comfort KR, momentarily displaced my pains. 

It’s Mothers’ Day today. This same verse was preached during service. It was a message to caregivers, especially to mothers who are always carrying a burden. 

Even to your old age and gray hairs  I am he, I am he who will sustain you.I have made you and I will carry you. I will sustain you and I will rescue you.  Isaiah 46:4 

Even when I grow old, the Lord will sustain me, carry me and rescue me! Wow! This blew my mind when I read the verse again and again. The human body is so limited. If I can, I would love to be caring for my children even to their white hair and old age. But is that possible? I would possibly be in the grave by the time they are well advanced in age. I can’t possibly still do what I am doing for them now, then. 

Especially KR, I am constantly worrying. Is he breathing well? How is he recovering from the ops? When can he eat and poop like the normal children? … as he grows, I believe I will start worrying if he could learn well, can he take care of himself? … the list goes on and is endless. 

As a Mother, I wish to carry my child even to his old age but I know it’s impossible! This verse tells us that God is able and is willing to do that. If I love my children this much, the Lord loves them even more and He will take care of them. 

The speaker continued to preached for Isaiah 49:15. 

“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!

Such a liberating scripture. If I could rephrase the verse, it means the Lord will remember, us (as mothers) and our children. 

If you are a mama and like me, you are constantly worrying for your babies. Take delight to know that there is someone greater out there, more capable than you are, one who live in everlasting. He, will carry us through. Blessed Mothers’ Day. 

Gifts

Over Vesak Day, KX and I spent some one to one time shopping for di di’s things at Takashimaya. We had to get a Combi teether as recommended by Aunty T (our SLT) and now that KR can bang both arms on the table, I wanna buy him a toy that encourages more of that play and interactions. While driving, as usual, I will tell KX why we are on a trip out and what we will be doing. KX was excited to spend that alone time with me while I was excited to just be in Taka!!! *blink blink* ūüôā Hmm when was the last time I went on a shopping therapy? I always enjoy shopping for the kids just that cos I am so busy, shopping for them sometimes has to be an online affair or simply a quick grab after a meal. Actually, nowadays, it’s always Mothercare at KKH since we frequent there so often. That doesn’t sound very fun huh?

It’s very funny but deep inside me I was very tempted to get KX a toy since I have the intention to get something for KR. I was secretly wishing for her to request to buy one for her! To give a little background, LY and I try not to buy things for the children unless, they need it or it’s their birthday or Christmas. Yup! KX has that ingrained in her and she was perfectly fine just browsing toys with me in the toy galore while I was searching for di di’s stuffs. It’s awfully strange but the urge in me wanting to buy her a toy grew stronger and stronger as I window shopped with her. The little girl in me set my eyes on the Sylvanian Family and I soon found myself asking, “KX, don’t you think this caravan is cute?” “What about this? Look! It’s a boat and the animals look so cute!!!!”

After a few rounds of “Oh isn’t this nice?” KX went, “Yes! Mummy, I want this!” It was a Hello Kitty Tennis set. I have wanted to get her a toy tennis set cos I think it teaches turn taking and it’s a good sport to explore. But when I saw that the set which KX chose has a plastic ball, I explained to her that the ball will not bounce well when hit and KX agreed with me. This understanding girl just moved along. And just when she has forgotten all about the Hello Kitty Tennis set, an interesting Cashier toy caught my attention. I explained to KX how that worked and asked if she would like a toy like that.

GOSH!!! What was I doing??? 

Soon, I caught myself trying to hard sell the toys to KX and I literally had to purse my lips to prevent more sales talk from coming forth!

KX passed the test with flying colours. We ran our errands and went home with a teether and a toy, both for di di.

I came back home and can’t help but to reflect on my “bad behaviour.” Actually, the more KX didn’t want a toy, the more I wanted to buy one for her. I think I just wanted to splurge on her and tell that that I love her as much as her di di. My mind is not just always about her brother, I think a lot about her too? I just wanted to spoil her in that sense. Thankfully, I was held back in time by the principles and values we wanted her to have in life – buy needs and not wants.

This lesson made me reflect on the generosity of our Abba God and the verse in Matthew 7:11 struck me.

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

A quote I chanced upon the internet, “Our God is so amazing that even a ‘no’ from Him has goodness written all over it!” Have you ever been disappointed that God doesn’t give what you ask for? That ‘no’ is definitely not a true reflection of the depth of the Father’s love for you.¬†

Being a Baby

A few days back, Sweetheart and I came home after running an errand to find da jie¬†in the following attire. She was playing “baby” with the helper and her Di di.¬†

You’ll always be our baby, lil one ūüôā

Her most recent achievement at 3 yrs 10mths is, unbuttoning and buttoning ALL the buttons on her¬†uniform. The top and bottom buttons were once the toughest to manage cos of the thicker fabric which KX had to push the buttons through. She did it! ūüôā

Two is better?

When KX was turning one, we started thinking about having a no. 2 and we also questioned why we would wanna have another?

Even though during the pre-marital class, both of us have agreed on having 2. But, what did I know about child-bearing, then? After no. 1, the incredulous battle with morning sickness definitely made having no.2 a well calculated one. I mean, who could ever forget the countless retchings, heart burns and refluxes when it actually lasted throughout the whole of the first trimester? 16 weeks felt like eternity then though I love my baby. Even mere mentions of it now still makes me shudder! *Gulps!* With that, I think I was pretty brave thinking abt no.2 when KX was barely a year old.

During the wait, I would very often throw the Husband the question, “Why do we wanna have a no.2, Dear?” I asked not cause I don’t want one, I asked cos I knew we did not have the same reasons for wanting one. During this search, my personal conviction is, I wanted to have one cos I love another one. I have chosen to love no.2 even before the point of conception. Hence, when morning sickness hit the 19th week for this boy, I still loved him. When I found out that he had cleft at 5 months, I still loved him.¬†When he was born small ¬†and had the numerous health conditions, I still loved him. When I knew he has Down Syndrome, I still love him. When I have to busy myself with therapies, running to and fro hospital visits, learning all the home care, pumping and pumping and pumping tirelessly, it’s all worth it and alright, cos I love him.

Lookin’ back, I was glad I went through this search in my mind and had multiple discussions with the Husband to be on the same page and be in the same agreement. If not, caring for him now would be difficult. I would possibly complain more than I care and become grouchy instead of grateful.

I remembered we discussing the following with sweetheart when we were planning for KR:

Reason #01: KX needs a playmate.

If we buy this idea, then no.2 is nothing but another toy. And if I still hold on to that reason, KR being a special child, I would have felt totally guilty for giving KX a “sub-standard” playmate. Is no.2’s destiny and main aim in life to serve his older sister? To fulfill his role as but a companion? No. KR has a destiny and a well written one in the Lord. He has to walk his just as his Sister, hers. It’s nice to have a playmate to grow old with but that’s not the main reason why we wanted to have KR, we wanted cos we love him.

Reason #02: 2 children seemed like the perfect family model. 

In commercial ads and any pro-family commercials or posters, it’s always a family of 4 that’s being portrayed in the scenes. That seemed like the perfect family mod. 2 children in each family, one girl and one boy.

Each parent handling one child is somewhat the most efficient way of parenting. The 1:1 ratio appears the best as no child would be left out. The children will always be helped during play, bath and meal times. Financially, it stretches the dollar but also not by too much. Sharing of food and commuting via the diff tranportation modes also seemed the most economical.

If it’s 2:1, some may think the overindulgence in that 1 could lead to raising a tyrannical and spoilt child. Hence 1:1 somewhat seemed the best. But still again, that’s not the main reason why we wanted to have KR, we wanted cos we love him.

Reason #03: Peer pressure or aunties pressure

….so when are u going to have a no.2?”¬†

I always find people who ask such question as people who has nothing better to ask. It’s not as if they are really concerned about our family planning! They are just moving along with the list of ‘A’ -Typical-CNY-break-the-ice-conversational-starters.

When single, “oh! When are u getting a Boyfriend?”

When attached, “Oh! When are u getting married?”

When married, “Oh when are you going to have a baby?”

When you have one kid, “Oh when are you having a no.2?”

And I think generally people stop when the it hits the topic of no.2. How strange but true.

And though we see our friends all having no.2, one by one. I was never envious cos I am never easily pressured to do anything in life anyway. We went through this with many people asking but it was not pressures that made us have a no.2, we have him cos we love him.

With the conviction of first loving before bringing no.2 into the world. It then doesn’t matter the form he first came into the world, what he is going to achieve and who he is going to become cos we love him anyway.

The word of the LORD came to me, saying, Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;                                                   Jeremiah 1:4-5

Cereals-ly…

We started seeing Aunty T about 4 weeks ago and since then, we saw great improvements in KR’s oral motor development. We persisted with the facial and oral massages daily for the past month and KR started making more ‘up down’ movements with his jaws as well as showing more coordinated movements with his tongue. With these positive developments, Aunty T progressed with cereal feeding via the spoon! I remembered sitting there stunned as Aunty T started the first teaspoon! Is this for real? Like cereals-ly!!! As the teaspoon landed firmly on his tongue, KR lapped and drew them all in! He swallowed. A little came up to the nose through the open palate and of course by the 5th teaspoon, this little guy needed the usual cajoling til he¬†10 mini teaspoons. KR had his first oral feed after 7mths. My heart was so thankful to Jesus! One day closer to removing the NGtube.

‘One day closer’. Dr A used to tell me that every day when I visited KR at the NICU (after his colostomy surgery) and always bugged them when they were going to discharge him. As KR improved, he would comfort me and say, “mummy, today we are one day closer.”

It’s indefinite when KR is going to finish a bowl or cereal on his own and have the NGTUbe removed totally. But I dare say we are One day closer.

Dear Lord, I am so thankful for the work You are doing in KR’s life. Thank you for helping KR overcome all the facial and oral massages he once detested. Thank you for helping him gain some competencies in the oral movements. I am so thankful. Today we pray that KR will taste of the food that you have made for man and enjoy every single one of them that’s being introduced to him. Wet his appetite towards food and let him savour the varieties and feast on them. We pray for his palate to be able to accept the sweet, bland, sour, bitter, sharp and robust tastes of food. Let him accept them well and reject none of them. In Jesus’ name we pray for good control and coordination of the tongue and jaw movement. Let his eating be effortless, efficient and enjoyable. In Jesus’ victorious name I pray, amen.¬†

You talk, I talk, who listens?

They talk when they walk

They talk til they fought

They talk when they are eating

They talk when neither’s listening

They talk the moment they wake

They talk til their head rests on their bed

Basically, they talk and talk and talk and talk…

Little ones, learn to take turns, learn to pause (Erm… for a while?), learn to listen.
Not just to each other, the world but importantly, to God

So that you’ll know the wise things to do in life or not

Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger.

Just like our God. That’s my prayer.

Amen ūüėČ

BFF. Kopi Talk. Wait a min. Where’s the Kopi?¬†

 

BEE-loveds

And so, the Jie jie had a new pair of shades. She so thinks Di di enjoys playing ‘Dressing Barbie’ with her. And I so think it’s very cute! ūüôā 

I think that’s one of the biggest perks for staying home with the kids. You get to capture every beautiful Kodak moments. The angry, the sad, the happy…. the cute. So precious.

These beloveds are growing way too fast. Has it been 3yrs for the Jie jie and 7mths for Di di? Where did all the time go? I am thankful for the privilege to be a stay home mama and have all the time in the world to spend with these little ones. Won’t wanna trade it for anything else in the world, neither taking this stewardship for granted. Thank you, Jesus for these precious bubs. Teach me to grow them well and grow well with them. *Grateful*

What’s so good about the Friday?

Good Friday is the day we commemorate the death of Jesus. How can we call it good when someone has died? Someone suffered the whipping, the crown of thorns, the ridicule and …the cross? The most inhumane and painful form of death penalty set for anyone – the crucifixion.

When I was still in teaching, I loved to greet my colleagues “Good Morning!” And flash them the million megabyte smile. Most of my colleagues will reply cordially but there is one who will always snuff out my friendly gesture with,

¬† “What’s so good about the morning?”¬†

I remembered replying often to this curt remark, “…the morning is good cos Jesus loves you!”

Indeed, this Friday is good because Jesus loves us. Two thousand years ago, it was on this very day that the redemptive purpose of the Lord was being fulfilled. We are no longer condemned for the curse of sin set out for us. Jesus’ sacrifice made grace and the abundant life available. This grace is free but it’s not cheap. It cost the life of the darling of heaven.

This Good Friday and Easter weekend were exceptionally memorable cos KR went through the PSARP. When I saw how his little hand was poked 6 times to get the wonky IV plug reset, how he wailed at poke and crying his lungs out for his mama to save him from the pain, I cried helplessly. I wish I could save my little darling from the torment of the needles but I know its very necessary and there is no other way. The plug had to be reset cos the kind of anti-biotic given to him was through the IV and when I asked if there is a comparable that could be given via orally? The answer was, no. ūüė¶

Over the Easter weekends, the phlebotomists were off duty and I was totally not comfortable with letting a young medical officer (from the surgical team), who had zero experience with setting an IV plug, do it for KR. After checking in with the nurses in the High Dependency ward, we found the next best alternative. A registrar from the medical team. It still took 6 pokes, nonetheless, cos this boy had so many of his veins scarred from the previous plugs set. The brutal witness of pinning my son down for them to find the right vein still etches deeply in my mind. Each time I see the scarred hands and feet, the scene replays.

KR’s painful event led me to contemplate about Jesus’ sacrifice. I can’t help but to marvel at the magnanimity of God to give us Jesus for our sins. Which parent in the world would do that? To give his child for the life of another? Oh! The brokenness of God when He had no choice but to place His Son at the cross to save us, who can fathom? This grace is ridiculous, out of the world and incomprehensible. In awe, I can only but say, thank you Jesus.

Worthy is the Lamb!

For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 (NLT)

KR’s Posterior Saggital Anerectoplasty¬†

The past week had been difficult for me. I get teary each time I think about KR going for this surgery. Also known as the ‘Pull Through’, the surgeon would need to slit KR’s back, detach the rectum from the muscles (internally) and pull it down to connect with the newly created anus. I prayed for a miracle. I asked the Lord, the one who can do it all; the God of the impossibles, to heal him. But over the week as I prayed, I knew in my heart, God isn’t going to heal him the way I would imagine him to. The Lord prepared me for today.

First, the Lord reminded me of the time when I was a caregiver to my brother who suffered Bipolar. There was a period of time when I felt very burdened and stressed. I prayed for the Lord to deliver me out of the situation, daily. More often than not, I would cry to bed and literally asked Jesus to ‘save me’, but the Lord did not. During one Sunday service, I saw in a vision that I was drowning and while bobbing up and down in the gushing rivers, I cried out to the Lord, ‘Save me and get me out of this!!” The Lord was silent in the vision but what I saw there after brought me great comfort. His hand stretched down from heaven and held on to mine as I struggled in the river with ferocious waters splapping me in every directions. Even though the Lord did not pull me out of it, He journeyed with me. His word for me then, was He¬†will be with me!¬†

My heart was even more ladened (though at peace), when my sis shared with me the bible story of Daniel’s friends being placed in the furnace. They were not delivered from the situation but neither were they being delivered into the hands of the situation. We all knew they came out of the furnace, unharmed. I believe this incidental sharing of the story was God’s intentional reminder that¬†He will be with us!¬†Indeed.

Second, one of my church pastor shared his journey as a cancer patient on the FB just the night before KR’s pre-admission to the hospital. There were¬†several pointers that he shared. 2 really helped me in my understanding of why things went¬†the way they were¬†and 1 pointer reassured me of what He had spoken to me before.

Pointer 1. “Healing comes in many forms and we should not box God in just one that we are familiar or is convenient.”

Pointer 2. “We must always measure up our experience to the Word of God and not the other way round.”

Pointer 3.¬†“In the end, God will turn all that we are going through for the good because He is always our good Father.”

When I first found out that KR has cleft, Genesis 20:50 was the anchor verse that I will claim and pray over him, often. God’s ¬†intention for him is always good, in time to come, the situation will be turned around and many will be saved. Though, humanly I can’t understand now, I cling on to what I know of Him to see me through each painful phase.

God? He is a good God and He loves us deeply.

Third, over Sunday’s service, our senior pastor preached about being a Faith Possessor; speaking to our mountains in life to move and to believe that it will happen. Throughout the past 6 months, there are many recurring reminders through different people and via various platforms that God will bring about the good in KR’s life. Now the challenge is to truly believe that God will turn it around for him. Because for all things, God work for the good of those who loves Him.¬†This phase is transient.

The song, You are Faithful ministered to me a great deal this week. Indeed, our God cares for us and He will carry us through.

Faithful God and my sovereign King, in YOU, I place my trust.

The life of my Son and the destiny He has in you. Amen.

With papa while mama pumps milk.
Oh my, mama… is that my last feed?
Super hungry by evening ūüė¶ Thank God I still have my fingers to lick.
Looking good without NGTube and Nasal Stent

World AG Congress 2017

Evangelist Nathan Morris preached that night. Even before he started, I could sensed the presence of God so evidently strong in the sanctuary. The Lord was in the house. Tears streamed down my face as I worshiped the Lord. It was such a precious moment for me cos ever since the children came along, worship with just Abba God and me is hard to come by.

I decided to go for the rally after watching one of the publicity during Church Service, a few Sundays ago. A few things that the Lord spoke to me before attending the service:

  1. Stand in proxy for KR
  2. The woman with the issue of blood

The Evangelist preached from the story of Moses being given away¬†in a basket to escape Pharoah’s ruthless order¬†– to kill all the¬†Hebrew baby boys. ¬†He went on to speak about how God hid Moses from the devil’s eyes. We all thought Moses was done for, just like the many other Hebrew baby boys. But the Lord had ¬†another plan for him. God allowed Moses to be nurtured in the house of Phoroah (in the house of the man who wanted to kill him) and later,¬†told him to deliver¬†Israel out of Egypt.

God had him (Moses) in His thoughts and in His plans all along. Nathan Morris

When I first found out that KR has Cleft Lips and Palate during my 5th month scan. I was devastated. Romans 8:28 did not comfort me at all. How can it be for good if the Lord has known that I love Him? How could He have given me a son with cleft when I serve and love Him so faithfully?¬†The Lord is good and indeed good always, He brought Genesis 50:20 to me over and over again in the course of the past 6 months to remind me of KR’s destiny in Him. I take great comfort knowing that KR is in God’s plans and thoughts right from the beginning.

When the Evangelist opened the altar for prayers, I hesitated to go cos it was just too crowded. However, in the end I went cos I remembered what the Lord spoke to me before I attended the rally. I pressed into the altar cos like the woman with the issue of blood, I just wanted to touch the cloak of Jesus. I just wanted to meet with God. Nothing supernatural took place but I stood there, in proxy for my son, immersed in the presence of God and was at peace. Thank you, Jesus.