Over the years of my existence on the face of this planet, I have never once sat down and utter a proper thank you to the person who laboured and birthed me.
A million thank-yous are never sufficient in this lifetime for her. What I certainly lacked in my verbal appreciation, I have and will forever made it up with filial piety and adoration. I know in the hearts of hearts that I am a good daughter to her and she will no doubt, affirm the same. Gee, confident much.
To my mother in reading far far away from me physically but never far from the dear dear heart.. thank you for letting me go.
I know it was not an easy decision for you to see your only daughter move countries and continue her life in leaps and bounds as someone’s wife. Moving away at 31 for love, while it is clearly my cheeky choice, was not at all an easy feat at the slightest. Hand on heart, we both certainly know that we never saw that day coming. I know since I have moved away, you have as much as I have too, lost a big chunk of your heart. I know you will never stop worrying for me and the uncertain future, as most mothers do but trust me you need not fret, I am in great hands.
I want you to know that I am well-loved and I am taken great care of abundantly. Your son in law is an amazing guy and most times I ponder what have I done to ever deserve him or his purest heart. He is quite the angel, as it turns out to be. Same cannot be said about the daughter you raised LOL. I give you my words, as I have always done, that I will not nag at your precious son in law too much till his ears bleed. It is challenging indeed as he often annoys me with his “where is your neck?” jokes but I will try to be patient with him. Operative word being.. try.
Thank you for showing me what honesty is. Brutal honesty is not glamorous and we both know that living in this world which can sometimes be filled with fabrication of lies and “sweet-talking” is difficult, but you never backed down from saying the truth and the truth sucks and it stings. Most of your family or friends do not always like to hear what you have to say and have always misinterpreted your outspoken personality as being “difficult” or “she is always angry”. But I know you and I know your truth. And nothing else matters. Everyone else can roll in mud with their shit-stirrings.
Out of a room full of people with their mouths shut close, you have always been the brazen one to stand up and say what’s right. You are an undeniable courageous force of nature to be reckoned with.
Unfortunately, that particular genes of yours have not been kindly passed on to me. My honesty complexity that I have, tend to make me cotton wool people’s feelings too much. But you of all people know the reason why I cannot be too comfortable and too open too soon.. if I get crudely honest, I am also very rudely honest and there are not many people who can handle the truth. Thankfully enough, while I may not always be frank with my spoken words, I am reassuringly true on my written ones.
Thank you for teaching me how to cook. That is one heck of a transferable trait you can ever upskilled on me as a kid. I have since not starved and also have the ability to make others not famished too.
I remembered when I was 8 or 9 years old, you left me alone in the house with only a pot full of cooked rice. I got hungry soon after you left (as usual, hungry always) and on that very momentous day, that pot of white rice became my first wok of fried rice and the rest is indisputably history. You were so proud of what I did, you told that story to everyone for years.
Gosh, I despised it when I was so so little and you will yell for me to come in the kitchen every single time you are cooking. I was swearing under my breath so much because as a kid, I just wanted to watch cartoons or read my book or hang out with my handphone in my teens and not go to war with the hot oil in the kitchen!!! You always tell me that I should not only be great academically, I have to be great all freaking around. But THANK YOU for pulling me in the kitchen every single time, NOT because you believe only girls belong to the kitchen but you were teaching me one of the best life survival skill there is. I cannot say there are many young girls who can disembowel fishes, dissect a whole chicken and cook that damn 8 parters of a chicken, collate 13 spices and 7 vegetables, make 5 dishes under 2 hours and serve a house full of guests as a kid, but through all those years of me crying in sympathetic pain when I cut my hand with the sharp knife and all those hot oil splattering on my face and body, you have taught me to buck the fuck up and make bloody good food, at that.
You and Dad are awesome awesome cooks and there is hardly a day in my entire life that I go without home cooked food. I now,sadly miss home cooked food beyond any words I can possibly say. Nobody’s food is ever the same as yours because it was simply not made with your love.
Thank you for being both a fierce mother and yet still have a heart full of love, warmth and compassion. At that, I have to thank you for whacking the shiet out of me when I was growing up. The way you raised me in your non-bullshit ways taught me a world of discipline. You were never shy to put me straight in my place if I ever get a slight tad sassy and I could never lie to your face without you smelling my dead pack rat secret out. While many others might frown upon putting a hand on your child as a way of teaching them the right manners, on hindsight I believed that has made me a better person growing up with manners and respect. Me and my brother have never gone visiting to anyone’s house and run into any of their rooms without permission, neither have we acted like starving kids in someone’s house (well fed before going out anywhere) or we never threw tantrums in public. When my mother says No, it is a resounding No.
You can have my word that if I were to ever be given the life opportunity to be a parent, I will raise them the exact same way as you did for me and my brother; ie the clothes hanger and the belt will definitely come out very so often to play- after all, no shame or shade in saying this but we turned out fine and that’s the best of a raising any mother can do. You are and will forever be, my role model.
Thank you for being my no. 1 life supporter. You have always given me the utmost trust and freedom for me to run my life while always keeping me in line whenever I go astray. I love that while you tell me to go out and enjoy and wear that short skirt and put makeup on and not be grubby, you will always check on me and call me every single night I am out-that to me is a balance parenting skill.
If I ever ask you for an opinion, you will always ask me what does my heart desires and what I think is right. You will always always tell me to choose happiness above all else. Your trust in me is impeccable and I really appreciate that.
Even way before feminism even exist, you have always told me to do well as a woman first before settling myself down in a cliche way. You never believe that females should hang out at home unemployed waiting on hands and feet. After all, back in the 80s when most women are stay at home mums, you were out working hard since I was a baby and only stopping when me and my brother are way into our adulthood and could give you and Dad a little breather. You have showed me what it was like to work a full day outside and come home and be a mom and wife too, staying up late through the night cooking away and doing all the chores and making sure we get our homeworks done while checking in on your family and friends. You are unrelentless, you have done everything and more without asking for anything in return and yet, you never say you are ever tired. How you do it all, is still beyond unfathomable to me.
You have always been that cool mum every girl wants and it took me years to realise why my friends love hanging out with you and are secretly texting you instead of me. (No hard feelings, Momster). You are cool and you are fun and you are care-free with your thoughts and you are always the life of the party. You are always a friend when I need one and a mother at all times. I remembered when I got my heart broken for the first time and you just came home from work and immediately knew what was wrong, you just hugged me and let me cry without asking inquisitively.
Thank you for being an astounding and supportive spouse to Dad and teaching me that marriage is a damn bloody job in itself, and oh boy are you stellar as a wife. You teach me by example for over 30 years of my life to just never give up. You are strong, you are fierce, you are painstakingly patient and you are fiercely loyal to your loved ones. You will not take no for an answer or exit the easy way out every time you stumble in life.
Thank you for teaching me to not settle for second or third best and thank you for always connoting to me that when choosing a life partner, try to pass the strikingly good looking ones or those blokes who are not meek in their potrayal of lavish lifestyle or elite existence. You have always strongly opined that looks do not last perpetually forever, everyone will eventually become old, most men might go bald and money if managed poorly will dry up inevitably. Instead, you always tell me to choose a man who is not only a well rounded respectful person, but also find someone who is hardworking and mild tempered.
Momster, I am who I am today because of you and if I were to re-do my entire life all over again, I will not have it any other way in a heartbeat.
You have stood up for me when no one cared, you have hold my hands through all my life joys and life obstacles, you have spurred me on with energy and calm my nerves down through turmoils, you are a tolerant listener and an endearing advice dispenser, you are a selfless soul and you are a giver, you are a confidante and a cheery shopping buddy, you are simply just the best and I will never finish saying thanks to you in this entire lifetime and more.
Remember and know this as you already have, I will always and forever love you.