Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Another phase in life.... hers and mine...

I have been in a melancholy mood. I have been unmotivated, wishing that I don't have to go to work.

Although, I try to be the type of parent that is practical and always encouraged my children to be independent and self-sufficient, I guess I've always wanted to be there for them.

Now, there is this realization that my eldest daughter, doesn't need me anymore.  Sending her to college last Sunday, it suddenly occurred to me that she will, from now on, be spending more time away from us. This is what has put me in a pensive mood. And, in a couple of years, my eldest son will leave us and then my other daughter, then finally, my youngest son.

I look back at the last 17 years of raising her, I wish I had been a better parent. I wish I was had shown more patience and compassion rather than anger and edginess. I wish I had shown more composure than agitation. Maybe, that is why I find it hard to let go. I have this feeling that I haven't done enough, that I must hang on to her to make right all those wrongs that I have shown her and her siblings. The wrongs that I can only hope will not have an impression on them.

But, this feeling of remorse and regret will be lost on them, as it was lost on me when I was growing up and fail to understand why my parents treated me like a child when I thought I was a man. There is no way to teach a child about parenthood, except by being parents. Maybe the techniques of raising a child can be read from books, but the pride that you feel when you see them happy and the sadness that strangles your heart when you see them disappointed, can never be put into words.

I will probably get used to this "empty-nest" syndrome. I will have to. Because, I predict by the end of 2013, only my youngest son will still be with us. My eldest son will have gone off to college and my second daughter seems intent to leave her present school and go to a boarding school.

Rummaging through my wallet today, I found baby pictures of all my children and tears welled in my eyes. I wish I was a better father, I wish I had given them more of my time. One part of me wants them to stay babies, and another part is so proud of what they've become.

I do know one thing.... I want to be with them forever...

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Somethings I wish I learned when I was younger....

  • Trust your friends, but do not rely on them - I find that the only person in the world you can rely on is, yourself. Maybe somewhere along the way you bump into an endangered species of people who are really sincere in helping you, but I have difficulties in naming people who are totally selfless....
  • Set a goal and draw out a path - if you want to be a Pilot or a Doctor or an Engineer.... set your goal and map out your route. Follow that route. Everything else is just distractions.
  • You can't please everybody, so don't bother.
  • Everybody thinks he/she is an expert - everybody likes to give advice. Their intentions are good but, always weigh what is said against your your set goals and the map to that goal..... Listen to as many opinions as you can... but remember they are just that... opinions not fact.... Take everything with a pinch of salt....
  • There's no such thing as "I have no choice" - life is full of choices. Even if it's between life or death... When you do something, it's your choice. If things don't go as you planned, it's your fault. Do not blame others.
  • Life is short, do not dwell on things that should have been. Learn from it.. and move on.
  • Humans cannot think logically.
  • Having pets only break your heart.....

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Paradox of the day: I successfully failed in life.

“You are the same today that you are going to be in five years from now except for two things: the people with whom you associate and the books you read.” Charles Jones.

I remember the first time I read this quote, emblazoned high on one wall of a training room.  It was an orientation session for new agents.... unit trust agents. I quit my job a couple of months earlier, after reading Robert T. Kiyosaki's book Rich Dad Poor Dad, and the thing that got stuck in my brain from that book is that you are at risk when you are employed. You are at the mercy of the business owner... your employer. He can choose to retain you or get rid of you as he pleases. He may just decide to fire you because he doesn't like the way you look at him....

The business owner, as I understood from the book, is less at risk as he is the master of his own destiny. His is in charge of the business and therefore, the success or failure is his own doing or undoing. 

So I quit my job, and explored every avenue that may lead me to be an entrepreneur.

I failed, miserably. 

Looking back, I now question my motives for quitting gainful employment. maybe, I was tired of taking orders. There always somebody telling you what to do. Now I know, you can't get away from that. You will always have that obligation to fulfill somebody else's wishes.

But, for now, I have decided to attribute my failure to one major factor.... I don't really know what I want. That's the key, to know what you want out of life. If you don't know what you want, then you have achieved your goal in life.

Hmm... that makes me a success then....

Monday, May 9, 2011

Things that actually happened to me but I never told anyone.... Episode 3

In 1974, during recess, after spending my 20 sens at the canteen, I went to play football with my friends. We never use real football, but the fruit from trees that grew all over the school compound, which made the grounds of my primary school, Sekolah Ismail, Muar, a cool shady place.

The older boys, those in standards (they them "year" now) 5 and 6 goes for interval (now known as "recess") after we the younger boys in standards 1,2, and 3 have finished ours. But, we are not to play in the vicinity of the older boys classrooms.

But, as fate has it, one of my friends had accidentally kicked the fruit a little too hard and it rolled the the basketball court that we used as our playing pitch. Chasing the little green fruit...I didn't realize that I have encroached the into forbidden area.

Luckily, I the prefects were in a good mood and ignored me. After I caught up with the fruit, I turned to see where I was, and realized I had a clear view of a standard 5 classroom. In it, I see several boys (it was an all boys school) were standing with their hands behind their backs. The teacher, walked from one standing boy to another asking something I cannot hear. One unfortunate boy did not give the correct answer... and the teacher, grabbed the back of the boy's neck and brought it down on to the desk, hard. There was a loud bang... and I thought I saw blood trickling onto the boy's white school uniform.

I went home after school that day and told my mother that I wanted to change schools. Mother and father both agreed without asking me why...., probably because I wasn't doing very well in school and by then Mother was already 50 and Father was 60. I suspect that they've had enough of my bratty attitude, hoping some time away would do me good.

In 1975, I started school in standard 5 in Sekolah Rendah Alam Shah, Petaling Jaya, Selangor....

And, no.. it didn't do any good... I think I only matured when I touched 35...