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Mama said she wanted to experience a staycation after looking at our photographs taken during our family stay at JW Marriot Singapore. So we decided to book one for her. To make it more meaningful, we invited Grandma.
I recalled we used to stay at my Grandma's place over the weekends during our growing up years. Being able to play with other cousins for unlimited hours was something that we looked forward to. For Mama, she shared that it was the family gatherings with other siblings and the opportunity to enjoy grandma’s home cooked food that motivated her to travel with three children in tow all the way from Bedok to Veerasamy Road, rain or shine. However, we stopped practicing the stayover when we reached our secondary school years. While I am not exactly sure of the reason, it must had been over 30 years since the two ladies shared a room.
There were many first time experiences for the elderly. e.g. Enjoying a 5-star hotel reception together, sipping cappuccino beside the pool and enjoying a selection of mouth-watering sandwiches for high tea with family members across 3 generations.
During the night, I witnessed very heart-warming moments between the 2 ladies when they lay down beside each other, chatted and giggled (bickering included) till 2am. They reminisced about almost everything regarding their past, life in general, aspirations etc. They don’t necessary share the best relationship in the family but I am sure they had put aside their differences and thoroughly enjoyed each other’s companionship that night.
When I looked at my children who were sleeping peacefully beside them, I felt a deep sense of blissfulness. I thought to myself "How lucky they are to have the opportunity to experience all these with their Grandma and Great-Grandmother. The full day of hustle and bustle was all worthwhile and I can only hope that they treasure all these memories as much as I do.”
During my growing up days, I couldn't stand outings with Mama as I frequently had to slow down my pace for her to catch up and repeat umpteen times during our conversations. The few times that I looked forward to going out with her was when I needed her to pay for the things I wanted. Although she was earning a meagre salary as a school servant, she was extremely generous because of her love for us. I managed to also get what most children desired during the 80s. You name it, Nintendo, Sega, walkman, I had them. The collection may not form a long list of items but it is enough to leave a deep sense of gratitude in me and a desire to try filling up their twilight years with lots of laughter and blissfulness surrounded by loved ones. I looked back with nostalgia, my parents slowed down their pace when walking with us when we were toddlers, gave selflessly and provided unconditional love for us. I ask myself "Isn't it rightful for me to do the same for them? 如果没有你，就没今天的我 😊”
Due to the very positive experience that mama had, we are going for another staycation soon. Where should it be this time? We shall see.
“In our limited life, few things truly matter. Family is one of them.”
Tags: Family Bonding /3 Generation Family
A father of 3, the Filial Piety Award Recipient strives to be a role model to his children. Chin Hock is also the author of Father (父), Mother (母).
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