You old man is a year older over the weekend. I turn 40, but who's counting.
That being said, I am probably somewhere in the mid point of my existence on earth . At this age, the onset of mid life crisis begins as I assess my own mortality on earth. Still it is my birthday, a day to celebrate milestones rather than to dwell on the fragility of life.
Before I decide to start a new workout routine to get the 6 pack I always wanted (and it is not beer), or buy myself the convertible sports coupe or to take a year long sabbatical and travel round the world; I might as well come clean as a person and as a Dad. Thus I would like to use this opportunity to pen down 40 random secrets I hold true to my heart till this date. Some of them may affect you while others are just secrets that I want to get off my chest. It is time for your old man to take the leap of faith and start his 40s with a clean slate.
On Growing Up
- My motto in my youth was ' To strive , to serve and not to yield' loosely translated to ' Diam Diam Zho , Mai Kao Peh'. It literally means ' keep on doing, don't cry father'. It had served me well in my youth especially in the army , but nowadays I adopt the 'Take it Easy' attitude. Guess I am getting old.
- My favourite show is The Walking Dead. It's not about the violence and gore, but about what one does to survive. I love to support underdogs. I had been one.
- When I was in my teens, I made a list of 10 questions or conversational topics when it comes to making conversation with the opposite sex. Coming from an all boys school for over 10 years, I desperately needed it.
- I once froze on the main stage during a Junior College presentation. It was my turn to speak, but I stood there on stage facing 1000 students and going blank for a full minute. It was the longest minute of my life.The worse bit, I had a script on my hand.
- It was my dream to be a lawyer and I probably can make it to law school with my grades. But 2 things stopped me. Fear of speaking in public and bad grammar.
- I made a speech to my class during my uni days that reverse the stage fight, the topic was my best friend. His surname is Beam, I call him Jim. I bought the bottle along for effect. Since then my stage fright disappear. Unfortunaly I lost my friend as I stopped drinking.
- I created a budget on excel spreadsheet since I started work in 1999. I am still using it today and had projections made till 2017.
- I was a bit of a rebel in my youth. Motorbikes, earring, long hair, weekday booze. Been there , done that.
- I am afraid of flying yet I was selected to train to be a pilot in the army. The career did not take off.
- When things went wrong, I blame myself.... Last. Bad habit, don't copy me.
- I can't skip ropes, my legs do not listen to the brains. Surprisingly I can dance. That is probably how I got the gal , whom you now known as Mom.
- I can't cook, not even a decent sunny side up.
- I hate being dared when I was a youth. Dare me and I will do it. Some call it fearless, on hindsight it was rather brainless.
- My Chinese is as good as your primary 1 Chinese. I failed my oral and ironically I use Chinese occasionally in my course of work. It shows failures can still lead to success.
- I am Kia Su , Kia Si , Kia Bor.
- When I was in my teens, a fortune teller told me I would use my mouth to work. My first job was a tele-marketer. My current job requires to speak to clients everyday.
- I have ugly handwriting. I am glad I do more typing now.
- I am quite good at UFO catcher games. I had 5 large boxes worth of stuff toys that I had since given away. I had stopped as both of you are not interested in plush toys.
- If you ever thought of buying me a present, getting a tech product will make me happy.
- I believe in 'Give the man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime ' Empowerment is stronger than spoon feeding.
- I tried to avoid cleaning your poo and at times pretend to sleep so Mommy will clean up for you.
- I am an avid user of iPad, and so are both of you. I always rationalize that kids should expose to technology early. In reality, I am grateful for it for giving me periods of break to rest, to eat and to watch TV.
- I may appear strong and nonchalant when both of you choose Mommy over me when it comes to playtime. Secretly, I am envious of her position.
- Noise irritates me, the sound of both of you quarreling is my bear-bug. Thankfully the sound of your laughter does not invoke the same irritable feelings.
- I wish I can be a teach you more. Somehow I felt I have not done enough. Too bad I can't teach Chinese.
- I had hopes that at least one of you would love football. Not to play with me, but to cheer with me while watching a match. Watching football was one of the few ways I bonded with my Dad and I miss that experience.
- I teared the first time I held you in my hands.
- No matter what I said in anger or in jest, I know I will always love you
- If there was a day that I would have to give up my life for yours, I will.
- I may look like I know it all, but I am learning how to be a Dad...everyday.
- There are moments when I wanted to make small talks with you but I do not know how. It is a trait I inherited from my Dad. You know, the strong silent type.
- There are times I wish I had more time to do my own things. When I had the time by myself, I felt the loneliest.
- I may not like flying, but I love travelling with the family.
- I don't want both of you to grow up fast. It makes me grow old fast
- Sometimes I am not so sure I am your preferred parent.
- I am not as fierce as I look. I may bring out the cane, but it will hurt me to use it on you. For the record , I probably used it once...lightly. The rest of the time is for dramatic effect.
- I do not drink, but I look forward to the day you would ask me out for a beer.
- I love your hugs. I hope you think it will still be cool to hug your Dad twenty years later.
- I had secret wish for a daughter. Daddy M's Angel has a nice ring to it. However I don't think you are going to have a sister soon.
- Last but not least, I am most proud to call you both my sons.
With Love Daddy