Life is always bittersweet, we have to experience loss and tragedy to understand the value of our existence.
Not too long ago we have a pair of Yellow Sunbirds building a nest at the netting outside out our kitchen window. There was a buzz of activity as the Sunbirds were chirping and building their home that hung precariously on the net.
It was obvious that we are going to bear witness to them laying eggs and having little chicks just outside out window!
So we left it alone, and before we know it, there’s a constant chirping from the nest and we reckoned that the eggs must have been laid and the chicks hatched.
Until a tragedy happened.
I got this WhatsApp message on our family group chat.
The Nest is no more.
The both of you went downstairs to check for any ‘survivors’ but the outcome is predictable.
While life throws you a sudden unexpected tragedy, you both acted without hesitation in an attempt to save the chicks. There was no holding back, choosing inaction, and just let what happened happen, and be sad over it, or worse indifferent. Which is honestly a done deal, the chicks are dead, I wouldn’t have bothered to go downstairs to check.
You both did more, instead of just leaving the carcass of the dead chick there, you dug a shallow grave and buried it, and place the nest on top of it as a mark. There is so much compassion and empathy from the both of you, I know deep down inside that you both have the courage to do something about death and suffering. There was no hesitation, you both knew it was simply the right thing to do, as a form of closure.
Your dad would have left it alone.
Being a Parent, Raising Children
As any parent, there is always this worry that my boys will go wayward, and turned out to become less of a person I hope you can become. With all our best intentions, there is no guarantee that kids will turn out to become decent human beings. All I can do is show you both the right way, and explain values, principle and ethos on how to live a decent life.
Showing is one thing, but I cannot tell if you boys will heed my words and have it in you to do the right thing, especially during times where there is no template. Both of you rise to the occasion that day and showed me that you both will work together, and embrace how precious life is.
This tells me that what I’ve been telling you boys, the stories I’ve shared is working.
You are the Reason why we have children
It was at this moment I got my answer as to why we have kids. With Singapore’s dipping birth-rate, it’s indeed very hard to comprehend why would we want to spend time, money and a huge part of our lives raising little human beings. I even heard younger couple say things like: “I don’t want to bring children into this world to suffer!” Back then I couldn’t comprehend this reasoning and it’s compelling given that the world’s going through a few wars, global warming, cancer, epidemics and all, it does seems like we shouldn’t make anymore human beings for them to come here and suffer with us, how noble! Oh did I mention the exorbitant cost of raising little people?
Despite of all the reasons not to, you boys gave me one single reason we did, and I’m glad we did. You have shown me that there are still good in this world, and that good lies in the both of you.
Death and destruction is constantly all around us, and there will never be any shortage of suffering, but there will always be a shortage of people who will stand up take action and make their world a little better.
One thing I know for sure; you boys will become a better person than your dad.