Category Archives: EMOTIONAL RIDE

MIL

my mother is law is a real piece of work.

i suppose most mother in laws are, but i only have the pleasure of dealing with my own.

i don’t say much about her to anyone except probably my own mum because for the most part, what does it matter. i can ignore it a good portion of the time and smile it off as much as i can.

today, she felt the need to express to me (alongside her equally irritating childhood friend) that my hair doesn’t suit me. that it doesn’t look nice. that it looks like beggars in india. which for a good 5-10 minutes, i completely just shrugged it off saying “yup” “only some people like it” “hahaha yeah it’s hard to wash and takes a long time to dry” “it might not be the healthiest (to you) but neither is chemically dying hair, right?” “yeah i’ve had it short, long, curly, straight. it’s just hair lah” “my natural hair would be really crazy curly and messy, not so nice and pretty (the way you want it to look)”.

then they left for dinner, came back, and in the middle of some other conversation – her friend decided to make some ugly comments about beggars in nepal and india and how she came back to find that here too (in hokkien the whole way, not knowing i understood every single word). i ignored that too. just decided to open a book and start reading.

Yoong expressed that he was tired because he knew i wasn’t in the greatest place to be dealing with more (especially after just getting back from my grandmother’s funeral), so the friend and sister left. she (mil) walked them out, came back again and decided of all things – she’d say “i think ah, your hair really doesn’t look good on you blablablablablablablablabla” to which i said “okay. but it’s not really nice to say things like that to people”.

and then shit hit the fan.

i cannot remember the words that came out of her mouth after that. some justification on why she said that, and that it was her friend’s opinion (fair enough, but she did not need to put effort into telling me again) more blablablablablablabla. to which i said “aunty, please leave”. and then she said “who are you”.

wrong move, mil. 

because whether you like it or not (obviously not), i am your son’s wife. HIS WIFE. i don’t say this to you because there’s absolutely no need for me to. because the fact is, I AM his wife. and in this little game of tug and war you think we’re playing, there is simply no competition. never has been. never will be.

your son loves you because you are his mother. i respect that, and allow plenty of space for you to irritate and piss him off (which you do, all the time). in fact, what you don’t know is that i tell him to hug you. to call you and spend some time over the phone with you coz you might miss him. insist on not giving up on trying to fix what you broke in the first place. continue supporting him throughout the ups and downs he faces with you. 

but make no mistake. continue crossing the line and you will find yourself blocked out someday. with him, right here with me. 

i would feel slightly threatened if Yoong is a loyal puppy dog to his extremely loving mother. or maybe i wouldn’t even need to because if she were loving and nice, we wouldn’t have a problem to begin with. but there is no threat.

you are a constant reminder to him of the things he hates about having to deal with family. the never ending pressure to give give give. perform. behave. respect. be obedient. bow down. obey. 

in the snap of a finger, i could put you in your place and show you who i am. and who you aren’t.

but instead of doing that, i tell Yoong to see the good in her. to let the way he sees her change. to heal. to love again. to love stronger. i’m starting to think, that’s quite fucking pointless. really. what’s the point of putting in all the effort i can when she hasn’t got the slightest bit of decency, compassion, empathy or manners.

sometimes i really feel like saying “omg aunty. your clothes are damn over the top lah. can you dress your age ah? stop being so humiliating to just about anyone you are standing around” or “eeeeee. i cannot stand your taste. why so gaudy. why you waste so much money on something so ugly. wah, the renovation job on your house is quite shit isn’t it?”

i keep going back to the same fork in the road. continue to keep trying to be nice for the sake of my husband, to learn to rise above things and train myself to be unaffected or just treat her the way she treats everyone else.

hmmm. decisions. decisions.

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i remember

ah ma used to cycle all the way to kfc to buy me a burger all the time, when i said i didn’t want to eat anymore. i would actually be full, and end up eating more anyways. she was smart at tempting me. she also did this with the fish & chips from lucky, wantan mee from ashita, buns from a bakery down the main road and countless other foods.

she used to pull me aside not so discreetly and insist that i take some cash or angpau (red packets) from her as it was good luck – before i left the house for longer periods of time.

i remember her black sauce chicken and fried fish with sweet soy sauce. they were my favourite. when she couldn’t cycle out anymore, she would cook food at home anytime i was back. and she’d make it a point to bring it straight to my room upstairs. even when she could barely walk up the stairs. as she got older, she’d slowly make her way up and down while sitting, one step at a time.

now when i look back, i realise how much she aged over the past decade. i didn’t really feel it then, because it was so slow and gradual. i didn’t think of the person she was the last time i saw her. funny how some things feel so clear when it’s time to say goodbye.

she used to make me milo and keep it frozen in the freezer for when i got home from school. i always say i was a milo baby. she was probably the reason why. one time, i had so much milo and food, i threw up.

i grew up with my grandma always around. i think i can say i lived with her throughout the years more than i’ve lived with my parents, or anyone else. she’s never not been a part of my life. however seldom or often i’d see her.

when i first moved to kl, she used to call me many times throughout the day. sometimes i’d love it. sometimes she’d annoy me. for the most part, i always answered and chit chatted with her. i suppose that gradually changed as well – until she didn’t call me for so many days that i’d find myself calling her. i remember thinking a few years back that someday my grandma’s going to stop calling and i’m really going to miss her fussing about me.

i can’t believe that day is here.

i really can’t believe that day is here.

it really is, isn’t it.
you’re really gone.

you really were the best grandmother a person could ever ask for. no one will ever spoil me the way you did. i still miss you ah ma. more than words can describe.

day 3.

day 3 of practically living in the hospital.

i am tired.

home doesn’t feel like home. probably because everything’s already packed for the move. the hospital is home now, because that’s where my heart is.

it hurts every evening when i have to leave my husband and come back home.

will try looking for a way to stay overnight tomorrow.
and ask the neighbour to feed the cats while i’m gone.

i’m not enjoying the evening’s at all but the daytime is alright when i get to take care of my husband and see him happy. i hate the look on his face as i’m saying bye. so unexcited with the idea of spending the night (and having to get everything done) on his own.

i hate hospitals.

i shall rise to the challenge as i always do though. i’m keeping the house as sorted as i can. wake up, prepare all food stuff and head off. get back, wash everything and set aside things for the next morning’s food preparation. not much time is spent at home.

i hope the kittens aren’t missing us too much while we’re gone. i’d hate to lose them on top of everything else too.

i’m processing all of this reasonably well for the amount of time i have to myself to think and just breathe.

the aircon in sunmed is not doing my nose any good. but there’s hardly a choice, is there?

i’m waiting for the storm to pass. because i will make it through. we will still be standing, to enjoy the beauty that comes after. to enjoy the rest of life together.

i miss you ah ma. i can still hear your voice when i shut the rest of the noise out and just think of you. i hope i never forget what you sound like.

i’m speechless. i haven’t gotten to processing everything yet. i don’t know what these emotions are just yet.

i love you.

i love you. goodbye.

this evening, my grandmother passed away. she was sweet, loving (especially obviously towards me) and always full of life & attitude. anyone who knows her would know what a colourful character she’s always been. she stayed true to herself til the very end in the most imaginative of ways.

she was my rock. when family fell apart, she was my home to go back to as and when i needed. all throughout my confused, distraught teenage (and young adult) years when i couldn’t seem to do anything right. she has always looked out for me, spoiling me in any and every way she could, taking care of me when i needed help. right til the very end.

we knew her time was coming. the plan was to maybe move her to taiping to be closer to me after we moved tomorrow, so i didn’t actually get to say goodbye physically. our last phone conversation has to be a good enough goodbye (for me). i told her not to worry about me anymore as i’m married, happy and well taken care of. that she could rest her worries. and that i love her so much. i hope that was good enough for you, ah ma.

i don’t know how to process this. i am so glad that my grandmother’s pain has come to an end. i am happy for wherever her journey takes her soul after this. i feel absolutely shit that i can’t go back right now and be there for my brother who has to sort a huge portion of the arrangements out because at the same time, my husband is in the hospital for dengue/denggi and collapsed lungs.

great timing, life.

i’ve made time to edit a photo in her honour and post this because really, i’m at home alone while my other half, best friend and only person i need to talk to isn’t reachable til i see him in the morning. i got home from the hospital, was preparing what i need to for tomorrow morning when i got the call from my mum, then tried to help my brother where i could and now i’m seated in front of the computer.

i’m afraid that once i finish and i have nothing to focus on, the reality of my current reality will only then sink in. this is going to be a night i will always remember.

i love you so much ah ma. so so so so much. you will always be a part of my heart. i know you are happier wherever your soul is now. you have given so much, you finally get the rest you have been waiting for and deserve so greatly. transcend in peace.

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my husband is in the hospital. things aren’t so bad that i don’t think he’ll be alright in a few weeks. but i can’t just shrug it off either.

i don’t know how to feel. i know he’s going to be alright because what other outcome can there be? i cannot deal with the possibility of any other outcome right now. i was so upset at the timing of him falling sick – a week before the big move. i really thought it was an infection. a bad one, yes. but i had no idea lungs could just collapse like that. the horrid part is that i saw his x-ray, and all the images of x-rays of people with pneumothorax i’ve come across while researching online don’t appear to be half as bad. he had barely any lungs left. what the doctor actually said was “you have no lungs”.

nothing i’ve come across so far leads me to believe that this condition can’t be treated, so i’m not worried things won’t get better. i guess i’m just dealing with the shock of it all. he drove us to the hospital this morning. we expected it to be a basic check to see what we’re dealing with (nothing major) and then he’d get some medicine and we head home. who knew i’d be driving myself back tonight?

i’ve never spent a night alone in our home. 2 and a half years of barely being apart. it’s absolute rubbish that this is happening. i’m in no way prepared to be the one that has to worry about my spouse being weak in any sort of way. the agreement was for me to die first someday so i’d never have to be without him.

i already miss him so much. i would have stayed the entire time with him there, but i figured i need proper sleep to be alert and care for him which i wouldn’t get sleeping in a chair there. . . . okay. that’s a lie. that’s just what i said to him so he wouldn’t worry about me falling apart without him. if they didn’t have visiting hours and i was allowed to stay i would have stayed without good sleep as long as it took for him to get better.

i maintained my calm and tried to focus on being loving and assuring. the only time i got teary was when i asked if they had visiting hours and they said no one can be there after 9. and then i left. and obviously absolutely broke down in the car before driving off, once i got home and probably will after i’m done being distracted by writing this post.

i’m not crying because i’m worried, or at least i think i’m not. i’m just really tired and unpleasantly surprised with how insane today was. FUCKING INSANE!

i just want my better half back home, all safe and cuddly in my arms.

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