Writer's Workshop - I Wish I Would Have...

~ Posted on Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 12:26 PM ~

This is my first Writer's Workshop entry in my own blog domain. For this week's, I'm choosing this prompt:

"2.) I wish I would have...describe a time when you didn't take action, but later wished you would have."

I wish I had stayed on at the hospital and be there when my mum passed away.

I seriously do. Sometimes I wonder whether that will change anything since my mum is in and out of consciousness during the last few days of her life, but how I wish I would have stayed just that one night and be there for her.

Mum was diagnosed with diabetes sometime in 2006 when my dad was having problems with his gout and other health problems. When dad passed away in April 06',  mum's conditions seems to worsen. I suspected that she has been neglecting her health when my dad passed away.. I mean, what will you do if your life partner for 3 decades plus passed away?

After dad passed away, there's only me and my mum left in the house. My elder brother stays about half an hour car ride away with his own family. My mum is a housewife, she cooks, cleans, chat with her sister and best friend on the phone sometimes, listens to radio, read newspapers and watched TV to pass her time. I continued back to work after things settled down and brought mum for her monthly healthy checks (her diabetes is under control by taking medicines).

One day, while I was getting ready to go work, I woke her up to tell her I'm leaving and she doesn't respond to me. She nods her head, and then she shakes it, and then she looks elsewhere. Very out of place look - she goes in and out of consciousness and fainted then. I realised something is not right and called my hubby (then boyfriend) and brother (at work already). Hubby rushed over (about an hour car ride) and helped send my mum to hospital. It was then that we were told her kidney conditions are getting worse. She's having low glucose level which caused her to be unconscious and unaware of the surroundings. The doc said had I continued to work and leave her at home, she might have passed away.

Mum was discharged a week after - she had no recollections of fainting and it was during the 1 week stay at the hospital that my sister in law (God bless you Rachel ceh-ceh!) brought a church friend (Cantonese speaking) over to visit mum and I got an SMS from Rachel in the afternoon that my mum had just said the sinner's prayer. Words cannot describe my feelings as I read that testimony. In fact, my tears still wells up whenever I think of this.. and as I'm writing this. Well, mum said her sinner's prayer and got better, her blood sugar was stabilised again and was sent home and we went on a strict food diet with her.

About few months later, I went on a holiday with hubby to Hanoi (we bought the tickets at the beginning of the year) and as mum's conditions have been maintained OK so far (her doctor told us a week before we went on holiday that mum's conditions are improving), we went ahead and mum went to stay with my brother and his family. On the last day of our holiday, I got a call from my brother that my mum's getting sick again. Apparently she went to the toilet (my brother and his wife went to work and their daughter was at the nanny's place) and was not able to even stand up - her kidneys are giving her problems that she does not have the energy to even push herself to a stand. She was stuck sitting on the toilet seat for the whole day until my brother and his family got home after work. They managed to get my mum up again and she refused to be send to hospital until I got back to Malaysia. Of course at this point I was angry, angry at my brother for not insisting to send her to hospital, angry at myself for going away on a holiday.

When we got home, we sent mum to the hospital and from there on, she had to go for dialysis as both her kidneys are damaged now. Every evening she had to go for dialysis and even though the needle is very long, thick and sharp, mum did not once complained of the pain at all. I really admire my mum's strength in overcoming her pain and problems. Mum was admitted to ICU for about 10 days and then her situation got better and she was transferred to a normal ward but within the same day, she was re-transferred back to ICU. During the brief few hours she was at the normal ward (sharing the room with 3 other women), mum was babbling stuff and keep saying the room is hot and dark. We tried to adjust the air-cond to the coldest temperature we could (even though it was later changed back by one of the patient's family cos it was too cold), we opened up all the curtains and windows but mum still says its dark and hot. And she also mumbled things like asking her mum (my grandma passed away about 2 years before that) to wait for her. In my mind, I prayed and said quietly 'Grandma, if you are really here, please go away. If it's not mum's time to go, please don't come disturb her.'

After a while mum slept and she was then transferred back to ICU. She was getting stable back in ICU but was still receiving dialysis treatments. Because I had just started work in a new place, I still go to work but left half an hour early everyday and walked to the hospital (about 15 minutes walking distance - there's no bus stop at my working place). On the weekends, I will overnight at the small lounge outside the ICU unit (family members are only allowed to overnight at the lounge sofa and a small room provided. No bed nothing for you but just the 2 sofa). Mum celebrated her 60th birthday at the ICU, I managed to pass a message to the hospital nurse to wish her birthday at 12am. For the few days after that, she slips in and out of consciousness and her body start to bloat with fluids. Doctor said her kidneys are getting bad and fluid retention is causing her body to bloat.

The day before mum passed away, I overnight at the ICU and my mum's relatives came over to visit her. Mum slips in and out of consciousness and I'm not sure whether she knows what is happening. The night before she passed away, the nurse told us to go home and she'll give us a call if there's anything.  I hesitated and the nurse said there's nothing much I can do by overnight-ing att he lounge and I was already there fr few days.  So, I went home and hubby stays for the night with me and the next morning at 7am, I got a call from the nurse saying that my mum's heartbeat is dropping and they told me to hurry up to the hospital. By the time we reached the hospital in 15 minutes, mum is already gone. She passed away on 11th Jan 07'.

I reached the ICU unit to see my mum covered up in a white sheet. I wish I had stay on the night before, at least I get to be near her when she leaves. I was there when my dad passed away and I do wish to be there when my mum passed away. I feel sorry for not being there when she goes. I'm only comforted with the memories that I get to spend some of her waking and conscious days praying and reading her bible stories, getting to hear her said 'Amen' when I finished telling the stories, getting to go church once with her, getting to tell her that I love her.. but I really do wish I could just turn back to that 1 night and stayed on...

 

* In loving memory.. *

Forgiving the Unforgivable...

~ Posted on Tuesday, July 6, 2010 at 11:06 PM ~

I wanted to share this awesome article today with you guys as part of my own blog meme which is:

LET IT GO: FORGIVING THE UNFORGIVABLE

By: Jasmien Hudson

Jesus gave strict instructions to "bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you." (Luke 6:28). Doing such things is one way we step further into our true "sonship" in Jesus Christ. Understand, being born into God's family is a gift, but taking on his traits - such as forgiveness - is a choice. True forgiveness comes when we choose to give up our right to our feelings in exchange for the God's will in a given situation.

If you are harboring incomplete forgiveness (i.e., bitterness) you might want to consider the following:
1) Where would you be if God did not forgive you for some the things you've done, are doing, and will do?
2) What blessings of your own might you be blocking due to a lack of forgiveness?
3) What negative impact(s) is/are unforgiveness having on your life?

For me, the most profound notion that taught me to forgive is this: I was warring with myself, because my object had no idea how I was feeling. But whether covert or overt, unforgiveness hurts you more than the other person!

Before you decide to keep unforgiveness alive, ask yourself this:
Will this matter next year, next month, tomorrow, and above all, will it impact my eternity? If the answer is "No", you’ve got several reasons to let it go!

 

You have no idea how timely this article is to me! I was having some problems with my MIL this afternoon but happy to say that we've evaded any major arguments. I don't want to dwell or elaborate more on what was mentioned but I guess I really have to just let it go and forgive. Hubby (youngest out of 5) is the only one left who is staying on and live together with his mum. The rest of his siblings are all either married with their own family or have their own house. I mean, my MIL is already 60+ years old, no one knows for sure how many years on earth we all still have, why waste time on arguing and feeling bitter right?

Oh God, please give me strength and patience to not dwell on things like this. Give me an open mind and open heart to accept that it is not up to me to change a person. All I can do is pray that their mind and heart will be opened up to listen to others, willing to accept other people's suggestions and feedbacks and to understand that we all meant the best for her.

Proverbs 19:11 (NIV): A man's wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense.
Ecclesiastes 7:8 (NIV): The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride.
Colossians 3:12 (NIV): Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

My Horrible Childhood Memory...

~ Posted on Monday, July 5, 2010 at 1:13 PM ~

Just yesterday I was playing with Ben and all of a sudden, I had a flashback memories of my childhood... and in that instant, I remembered one childhood memory which I had totally forgotten all about... it was a horibble, horrible one... I still couldn't remember much in details but enough to write up a post of it so that I can and from now on will remember such thing happened to me long, long, long ago...

What happened long ago (I think I was about 8-9 years old) was I cleverly shoved something into my nostril and it got stuck inside. YEAP... SHOVED into my NOSTRIL and cleverly got it STUCK. Up until 5 minutes ago, I don't even know the name for the object that was stuck in my nostril, so with a little bit help from dear Google and its image search, I finally found more info to put into this post.

My dearest blog readers, that object that I shoved and then got stuck in my nostril is what we called in Malay - biji saga or the saga seeds.

This is how it looks like from the tree. You can read more about it from this link: http://www.naturia.per.sg/buloh/plants/saga_tree.htm

Photo taken from Google image search

And when you plucked off the seeds, this is how they look like:

(*Both photos taken from Google image search)

Look at that bright Ferrari red colored seeds!

How can one resist from shoving it into their nostril, right? . . . .

Ok, ok... thought I could  try and  justify my stupid act or something... Embarassed

So anyway, I remembered my mum always brought me back to her hometown whenever I had school holidays and I love spending my holidays in her hometown cos I get to see my cousins and we always had this wild crazy adventures during the daytime.. like cycling all over the village, playing cooking (or what we called 'masak-masak' in Malay), catching grasshoppers and wading into the rivers to catch TADPOLES and small fishes... crazy huh?

So anyway, one time I brought home these lovely red saga seeds and I'm not sure what I was intending to do but I ended up with one of the seed in my nostril. Heh... I have no idea how I managed to get it out of my nostril but I definitely DID NOT call for help from anybody else.

I mean, yes, at the tender age of 8-9 I am THAT naive and stupid to shove the saga seeds into my nostril but I do have the tiny bit of wisdom NOT TO humiliate myself further (or probably scared of getting scolded by my parents for my heroic evil kenievel act or something) I do remember trying to press my nose bridge in order to push the seed out and also blowing my nose hard. Am not sure whether any of this method works cos I guess part of this horrible childhood memory was still being supressed by my brain... Sigh... what a memory... 

Of course, now that I remembered part of this memory, I do get worried that Ben might one day do this and shoved something into his nostril. Gulp...