AlwaysWoW! For a Great Great WoW in Life

Thoughts from me about things that are cool, that are WoW, that blow me away. Observations about businesses and people from a wide variety of life. Daily encounters - and thoughts outside the box, inside the box and without any box. New thinking, and challenging old thinking. Passionate about life, about respect, and about integrity.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Happy Birthday

I don't know what I am actually doing here, in front of the computer, blogging away (addicted?). It's my kid's birthday - he turns seven today.

He was born seven years ago, at 15.23, in a hospital in Kuala Lumpur. At that time, my wife and I lived in Jakarta and she flew to Malaysia earlier. As far as we knew, she had to deliver in Malaysia if our child was to get Malaysian citizenship. I came a couple of weeks after her, and worked in the Malaysian subsidiary on my projects in Jakarta.

The day my child was born, I was also working and actually had a lunch appointment with my boss. I could plan it that way, since he was not expected that day. Now, at around 1145 or so, I received a call from my wife, that she would go to the hospital since her water broke, and that I could come any time. In typical male fashion to such news, I reacted confused. Thinking about my lunch appointment, I went to my other colleague in the next room, and told him, that the water had broken, and what he would do in my case - he was an expert, since he was the father of three kids at that time. He thought I talked about work, and responded, that he wouldn't know the project, so if I could explain it to him in more detail - that he stopped, looked at me and said - "what? Your wife is going to deliver today and you are still here? You should go go go!". In the same moment, my boss came - also married with kids. He heard the story and said, not to worry, you need a beer, let's go for lunch. so I trotted with him and another colleague. He told the waiter to hurry up, since my wife would deliver soon. I was just sitting there, eating my lunch, drinking my beer, and looked a bit dazed. Than my boss said, that now I am strong enough and should go quickly - but hey, as bad as this sounds, he meant well. So I went of to the hospital - and came on time. My wife was there and I saw her off to the delivery room.

Than I sat in the waiting room - I was not allowed in - my wife underwent Caesarean. I sat there, staring at magazines (why do they have magazines in the waiting room of the delivery section??). I picked one magazine, but didn't understand a thing. I thought - uh oh, I am not ready. We tried to get ready for the child together. I thought that this is the reason why pregnancy takes nine months. To get yourself ready psychologically for the change. Nonsense - you are never ready before it.

Than I heard the crying of my baby, and I sat down - sank down. That's it, I thought - here it comes. I wasn't alone anymore, since my sis in law was there as well. But I don't know anymore what she did, said or so. Than I saw my child, and my wife. My wife was knocked out from the anesthetics. The nurses gave me my kid. He wasn't bigger than from my fingertips to my ellow. I looked at him and at that moment I knew what love is. What real love is - from father or parent to someone you really care about. I just thought, my goodness, this is my kid - I love him. I will never ever allow something to happen to him. It was the greatest feeling that I ever had, and right now, writing this, I feel a deep sense of it in me.

We went through a lot after all of that, my family and I. The riots in Indonesia, and how we flew out from the embassy. The time in Singapore in 1998 and 1999, when I went swimming with him everyday. When he walked through the baby pool, first with his hands up, and I am holding his balance by holding his hands. Later, when he walked along, and I was two or three feet behind him, and he fall in the baby pool and how shocked I was to see him under water, raced to get him out. When he took his first steps alone - my wife and I sitting opposite on the floor, I am holding him, let go, and say, come on, go to Mama. He does. She does the same and me again. He loses his way to her - its not easy to go straight the first time you walk - and turns left instead. We struggle from our position to run after him before he runs into the wall - stopping is also not that easy.

The first time I scolded him for doing something and he didn't take me serious. I wiggled my finger and tried to do an angry face. He just did the face back and wiggled his finger - how can you be angry.

He didn't want to fall asleep alone or outside the pram. So I am pushing the pram up and down and up and down and up and down. Are not allowed to stop, or to carry him to bed, before he is deeply asleep. Or, even earlier, when he could only fall asleep on my shoulder. No where else. And me walking up and down. One day, deep in the night he woke up, and couldn't sleep anymore. So off I go, at three in the morning - up and down and up and down. tapping his back, sh sh sh. Stopping, looking - does he sleep - nope, he looks back at me. And up and down and up and down.

I am having a diary with all those little stories. Not much and not always consistent. It gets more difficult to write, when one kid grows.

Now he is seven years old - goes to primary school, learns multiplication, falls in love with a lot of girls already. The first time that happened was in kindergarten. It is fun to learn with him, to bond with him. I read somewhere that we adults smile way lesser than kids, and yeah, it is true. But it is great for me to "go back" to being a child. Racing after the ball with him. Playing waterpistol. Doing funny faces. Simply being a child again. Imagining how it is when there are adults looking at him, from top down.

So I go on my knees, often, when I talk to him - face to face. Or I imagine how it is on the escalator, when you are so small - all those big backsides pointing to you - how do kids feel than? Explaining good and bad to him, when it is difficult to distinguish between good and bad today.

Instead of teaching him how to walk or swim, teaching him to value people, plants and trees and animals. But how to explain that ants on the ground are important but that those living in your household "deserve to be flushed away" with water? How to explain that driving fast is not good and that emergency lanes are for the ambulance when there are many cars driving by on the emergency lane? How to teach respect for a lot of things that don't make sense anymore? How to teach him to be quiet when the teacher talks, when I believe it is okay to speak up when you have an opinion?

How to teach him that its not okay to always have what others have, when all his friends get to have it?

Today is his first big BIG birthday party - starting at three in MegaKidz in Megamall. He is looking forward to it since about 3 weeks or even planned it longer - before my wife and I knew. Its his first big one - before, we always kept it smaller, amongst the family. Now, with all his friends having parties, he also wanted to have one and that is okay. Over the planning period, the number of invited kids exploded. He is having the party with his cousin, who had birthday last weekend. So we already relocated from Bangsar to Megamall. Instead of 30-40 kids, we expect around 60.

My wife is going to the seminar, but my In-Laws came and my sis in law will also help. I will have fun, we will have fun, I promise you. And I will look forward to more happenings with my kid.

So this is a long entry. I should be going - and I will be. Will report back soonest!


Powered by Blogger

Blogarama - The Blog Directory