December has been a busy month for us with the arrival of the baby, preparing Angel for primary school, celebrating Ariel's birthday, making the most of our girls' outings and all the Christmas shopping, feasting and gatherings with friends and families.
In today's "Happiness is...", I'm sharing with you an incident that sparked off a deep reflection and many heartfelt thoughts. Yes, a little heavy but you know, I like to pour out my heart on the blog because it helps me to see things in perspective and being truthful is one of my few positive traits.
You know how sometimes we get caught up in the situation, lose our tempers and get so blinded that we fail to see how it was actually a very trivial matter that was unworthy of all the tears, fights and misery? I'm slowly but surely learning to not sweat over the small stuff because you know what, life is just too short for that.
So, here goes the story of how it all happened...
I think I'm very lucky to have had a smooth delivery and I'm recovering fast and all ready to hop back into action. If you know me personally, you will know that I'm the type of happy-go-lucky sort who tries to inject as much positivity into life as possible. Yes, the kind who sees her cup as half full and has an unwavering belief that life is beautiful and full of hope. Yet, an incident that happened after Asher was born made me wallow in despair for a good three days.
You see, for some reason that I cannot comprehend, the hubby went to do the birth certificate registration for our baby and out of the blue, decided to add a comma in his name. Yes, this comma was the cause of it all. Both our girls had no commas in their names so I really didn't know why he would want to add a punctuation mark, especially after he showed me the form and I told him it looked weird so please remove it. Which, obviously, he didn't. As nice as it was to receive a special edition SG50 birth cert, I was very much bothered by the comma because I knew this was going to stick with my child, possibly for life and affect his passport name, NRIC name and how I spell his name when it says 'as in BC'. Plus, I had to remember that his name was going to be a little different from the sisters and not be confused by it all.
I spent days and nights thinking about it. I called up Thomson Medical Centre and ICA, googled and did research, only to discover that it is not possible to rectify the mistake unless we are willing to pay extra and surrender his birth cert for a birth extract instead. Yes, so please think and check carefully next time when you register your child's name. I kept wishing that time would rewind to our hospital stay, that I had taken a pen to strike out the comma, that I had insisted on being the one to verify the details, that we had decided to take our time to do it at ICA instead of rushing to do it in the hospital. I couldn't help but think about the "If only" and "I should have" when I jolly well knew that what's done could not be undone. There was this regret, frustration and agony in me that I couldn't get rid of.
The good thing was I was sane enough to keep all of it in me and I did not get into a fight with the hubby for what he overlooked. I knew that wouldn't have helped anything and I also knew it was a pure mistake on his part, for forgetting how he did it for the girls and for not thinking about all the future implications. I get it, men and women think differently. We talked about the whole issue amiably and I tried not to let it show just how badly I cared about the whole thing.
Then, I confided in a friend because I knew I needed someone wise to give me some advice that I desperately needed at the point in time. Yes, sometimes we just need someone to knock some sense into us, don't you think so? So while she agreed that it would have mattered to her that the names did not follow the same style, she also told me to just accept the mistake and move on because there was no point crying over spilt milk. There was one thing she said that really woke me up from the whole thing and that was "Don't sweat over the small stuff, Summer". Yes, it worked like magic and suddenly, *poof* I snapped out of it and tried to turn the negative thoughts into positive ones.
I reflected deep, long and hard. A name might be important but after all, it is just a name. It could have been worse if he had spelt it wrongly, right? I might be an idealistic person but I need to understand that life will not possibly be ideal all the time and things will not always happen the way I dream or envision them to be. As long as my baby is healthy, safe and happy, there really isn't anything more that I should ask for.
Think about all the natural disasters happening around the world. Think about the terrorist attacks that have caused many to die for no reason. Think about the unfortunate car accidents that have killed children or left them orphaned. Think about how our friend had to battle with cancer and unfortunately lost the battle after seven years. Think about how a friend told the story of her sister-in-law's baby being stillborn at 40 weeks. Think about how another friend told us at Thomson that his wife was in the ward and had her baby removed because of pregnancy abnormalities. Think about how some people try all their lives to have a baby but sadly can't. Think about the baby that I once lost and how my world came crashing down.
After that, look around and think again.
How lucky, just how lucky I am. I am thankful to have a happy family and three healthy, lovely kids. I am blessed to have a roof over my head, food to eat and a bed to sleep in. I am glad to have parents and in-laws who dote on our kids and get along well together. I am grateful to have a hubby who loves the kids, works hard for the family and supports my decision to be a stay-at-home mum. Yes, he might not be perfect in many ways, but so am I and I guess that makes us perfect for each other.
So together with the kids, we talked about the comma again, made it our funny family tale and most importantly, I taught Angel that we should not sweat over the little things in life. I told her to remind Mama when I lose my cool and that I will likewise remind her when she throws a tantrum or fights with the siblings. The comma now symbolises 'small stuff' and I will make it a point to tell this story to Ariel and Asher when they grow up. Nothing else matters so long as our family is loving, happy, safe and together.
Yeap, life moves on and we are all good. Here are some of our highlights from the month of December.
We took the girls to bowl and with the help of the gutter bumper, the girls managed to hit strikes and spares, much to their delight!! Actually, it doesn't matter that they half threw and half rolled the bowling ball, as long as it hit one pin, that was all it took to make the kids happy and contented.
Besides shopping for Christmas presents and listening to Christmas carols, we also hosted a Christmas gathering at home with some of my best friends and the kids had a good time setting up and decorating the tree, wrapping up the presents, as well as partying and playing together. My favourite part was when we switched on Just Dance on Wii and all of us started to boogie and shake to the music!
The big girl attended a birthday party at Pastamania and had fun making her very own pizza! I think it's a pretty interesting idea to let the kids have a go at pizza or pasta making at a party and maybe we will consider this for her own birthday next time!
We also made a visit to Christmas Wonderland at Gardens by the Bay to get into the festive mood! The girls were thrilled to go on the rides while the hubby and I played the carnival games. The main highlight for the evening had to be the Snow Playground where the girls and I had snowball fights, made snowman and snow angels too! Although it was quite costly at $12 for 30 minutes per pax, plus your feet will need to fit into shoe size 36/37 and below to enter, I was really, really glad I chose to do it because those were such precious memories! This was especially true for my little girl, who unlike the big sister, has yet to experience real snow in winter or held a snowball in her hands. So, the fact that she keeps talking about it up till today, like "Mummy, remember we made snow balls and threw at each other?" or "I made a snow angel before!", tells me that she really enjoyed that session and it was all worthwhile.
Of course, the one big change that took place this month and will change my life forever was the arrival of baby Asher. Read about his birth story here. I was so glad to cradle him in my arms and relieved to see him safe and sound, and the nurses even commented that he was one of the pinkest babies they had seen.
May the world be filled with more hope, peace and love in 2016. Happy New Year, everyone.
How did the month of December go for you?
Happy memories have a special way of touching our hearts every time we think about them. Join in my linky party at the end of every month and let us smile, rejoice and share the simple joys of life. Highlight and press Ctrl + C to copy my button above, include it in your post/sidebar and add your link below. For happiness is all around us.