Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Fourth anniversary of my father's death

For days I have on and off been thinking about what my late father said about his grand children. He didn't envy the lives they have and if I have grand children myself some day, it would be worse. Just thinking about it already make me tired. So if they marry and have kids they ought to leave Singapore and bring up their kids elsewhere? But if they do not marry or are married without kids they have the time and energy to out compete many with young children? This is absurd. Think! You will have enough single FTs with no intention to sink roots here but single minded to just play the business and career game to win while citizens have to strike a balance and think long term. If so, the majority of us will not be able to compete. My late father was farseeing.

So I sometimes envy him because he no longer spin and toil. From Mary Frye's,

Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there; I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glints on the snow,
I am the sunlight on ripened grain,
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there; I did not die.

Should I have wished but he never encourage my siblings and I that we can be hopeful about tomorrow. That's simple, he only wanted to deal with what is certain. You can do nothing useful with the speculative. What is sure is that life would be hard and even if you are unafraid of hardship the rewards are not certain. Life would always be exciting and the media will be full telling those stories but it might only be fun for the minority.

When I was a kid he was hopeful about the future. He had full confidence in the PAP. When he became a grand father he insisted a lot in life depends on luck and he thought we might be running out of that. He had much less confidence in the new PAP but he was also sensitive to how the environment had changed especially China.

He is no longer around to witness that two of his eldest grand kids have done extremely well in school. One is training to be a doctor and the other has straight As waiting to go to university. The other two would probably do no worse.

As for me, I didn't have the chance to explain to him the strategies from Sun Pin which I had used to help one of the grand daughter do so well and is now also guiding her younger sister. And yes, he was right we needed some luck too. But do all these matter? Not at all. His toil has ended and he has gone into his rest. If you don't want to enter that rest than hear the words St. Peter said to Mother Teresa in her dream: there are no slums in heaven.

We cannot play the old bankrupt game. Unlike him, I am more optimistic about tomorrow. What we need to do now is grow in confidence until we become sure like his generation was. If we don't get to that point, there is no use working hard.

No comments:

Post a Comment