Memories always haunt you
This morning I read this article (Farewell Dad. I will miss you.) by Keith and it has reminded myself about recent passing of my mum few weeks agao.
Before you read on, please note that this is a personal article to myself with no component of investments, financial independents topics etc. I just want to share my feelings and remind myself and everyone to CARE YOUR PRESENT before it is too late.
For those who have been reading my articles, I have subtly wrote about my mum passing away in one of my article (Truly understand Living in the Moment now) few weeks ago. I thought this was a private affair of mine, hence I don’t want to put up the full details to the internet for all to see. Perhaps subconsciously, I still want to deny this as a truth/fact of life and just want to hide it somewhere in the deep memories of mine. However, I want to remind everyone including myself to Care Your Present/Live in the Moment, hence I wrote that article.
However, memories come back to haunt me. I am writing this article now with tears rolling my eyes and heart bleeding. I tried to act strong since the passing of my mum on 19 Jan 2023 Thursday afternoon. In front of people I don’t cry, but nowadays I would cry at night after everyone in my family sleep. In the past I used to sleep late, nowadays I tried to sleep early with my wife and kids so that I won’t feel alone at night.
Tomorrow is the San Qi (三七) day for the Chinese’s ceremony for the dead. Coincidentally, it is my birthday and I won’t be celebrating birthday this year. There is nothing to celebrate when the woman who give birth to you has just passed away.
14 January 2023 (Saturday). This is the day of where my mum was admitted to hospital. She was suffering from long term renal disease and was diagnosed as full renal failure (thus need dialysis) 4 years ago. She was a frequent visitor to the hospital since then.
The worse case was in 2020/2021, she was actually admitted to the hospital for an entire year due to a leak in her intestines and many other medical conditions. Cutting the story short, she went through numerous operations (heart, ribs due to fracture after the doctors ditch to save her using CPR etc). She was in breathing tubes, ICU etc. That time we thought she would be gone after the Doctors told us that it is very likely she will be gone given her multiple failures in the major organs. Luckily she survived but she was hospitalized for an entire year – March 2020 to March 2021. After her discharge in March 2021, she was bedridden fully with no ability to do her own Activities of Daily Living (ADL).
As all of her kids are working and it is difficult for us to fully take care of her 24 hours, we luckily managed to get a caregiver helper for her and she did well to help us take care for. My sincere thank you to you if you are reading this. My father was also badly ill with cancer but luckily the Chemotherapy works as of now.
Since that long year of hospital, her health has become weaker and weaker. She still can walk a bit with some help from to other people. We would call taxi to bring her to her weekly Mon, Wed and Friday dialysis. But who knows she also get COVID. Due to Covid, she was hospitalized for 3 weeks, after that she can’t walk at all. We change to getting those wheelchair services (Dexerity, Silver Fleet) etc to bring her for her weekly dialysis and hospitals visit.
Since this episode, she been in and out of hospital very frequently. We are worried but nothing we can do. What I did was to visit her weekly (we didn’t live with them similar to many other married people) and talked to her. Of course bring her to the doctors etc.
The day ambulance come
On 14 January 2023 (Saturday), the week before Chinese New Year, she was not feeling well. Hence we called ambulance to bring her to hospital. I was actually planning to visit her on 15 January 2023 (Sunday) while the caregiver helper on off day. We thought it was her usually in/out of hospital like many past time, but this time is not.
The next few days was horrible. Hospital told us that she was under some kind of infection. Her blood pressure become too low (below 100), hence they can’t do dialysis for her. For those who are unaware, during dialysis, blood pressure usually will drop. Hence for patient with too low blood pressure, they can’t do dialysis because of the risk of cardiac arrest. As time goes by, we were informed that her situation is in a loop – her blood pressure too low for dialysis, but without dialysis, the toxic level in her blood would become too high. Hence they can’t let her eat because this would increase her body load to clear toxins. To push back the blood pressure, they would need to cure the bacteria infection. No food, only drips would make her weak. As times goes by, she went on without dialysis for days.
The day came
It was a thunderstorm day for the whole family. The bad news came on Tuesday 17 January 2023 or Wed 17 January 2023. The doctors told us to be prepared. Everyone can visit her and standby her bed 24/7. She might not make it.
We wanted to celebrate Chinese New Year with her and she was looking forward to it but now we have no chance.
We were with her standby beside the hospital beds, hoping for a miracle similar to 2020/2021 but it didn’t came. Her vital sign suddenly came back on 19 January 2023 3pm plus and we thought got hope. But then suddenly she was gone on 4.44pm. She might be waiting for her grand kids to come before she leave this world (my kids reach below hospital around 4pm plus but can’t go up due to rules).
After which, I can’t believe this is the truth, we went through the usual funeral etc, trying to heal our wounds. It was hard, but have to. Until today, I still can’t fully healed from it but I have grown out from it.
As mentioned in my last article (Truly understand Living in the Moment now) – In the past, I know that I should live in the moment/Care the Present and not to be too worry about future/worry pasts. But to truly know and practice it to the deepest of my soul, I didn’t manage to do it. It was after my passing then I truly understood.
Since then, I vowed to live everyday to my fullness, do things that I love, treasure my love ones around me – to put it bluntly, you will never know when that day that you leave this world will come. Time has no reset button.
Below are was I have posted in that my last article (Truly understand Living in the Moment now), hope everyone really remember to live in the moment, Care Your Present. Time has no reset button, it will be too late to regret in life.
Life and Careers
For those who have been following my article, you might have remember this post (A real life case of Financial Independent but don’t dare to retire early). Let me put it straight to the point. The person that I have mentioned in this article is me.
I have promised my kids that I will be house dad to spend time with them hence I quit my job three months ago.
However, in the past three months, I become worry about money/cashflow, especially if I will have sufficient money to support my mum should something like 2020/2021 year long hospitalization occurred. Rationally I should have enough with cash/CPF, medical insurance coverage, but I still worry. I have also did an analysis previously (You will likely never run out of money with 1 million: Expectation vs Reality) which mathematically prove my points of having enough (of course I have more than 1M).
The three month notice period wasn’t what I had imagined. I was living in constant worry about future and regretting about queuing a decent job with nice cashflow etc. In the end, I wasn’t able to give my fullest to the kids. I became emotionally unstable and not being able to live in the present.
I don’t know if this was fate or my mum’s wishes, about 1-2 days before her last day on Earth, I was in discussion in my company to continue with my role instead of leaving since they can’t find replacement. That time I was too worried about my mum, hence I said yes to continue to get one thing out of my mind. At this moment, I am not sure if I am right or not.
Fast Forward to Today
Now then I know I was wrong then for that 3 months period.
After my mum passing, I realized that time is the most important. Something once you missed it, it won’t come back. My kids everyday was hoping me to bring them out to play after their school around 5pm plus, but I can’t due to work commitment. Last week, her teacher told me that my kid told her that she most look forward to her daddy to bring her out to play (not look forward to daddy buy her new toys).
Let’s fast forward a bit, imagine years from now I am on death bed or after my kids grow up to secondary/JC/Poly/UNI…
- Would I regretting missing my monthly paycheck that give me stability of monthly cash flow despite having enough cash flow from dividends/other investments?
- Would I regretting missing the time where my kids keep call me daddy daddy, ask me to accompany them and bring them to play? Do you think by the time I have lots lots of money and they have grown up, they still want me to bring them out to play or they rather go out with friends?
Anyway, let me get back to life today. I have promised myself to live a fulfilling life, Care My Present, with or without my 9 to 5 job that give me monthly paycheck. Live everyday to the best and see how it goes.
Don’t worry too much about the past or regret the future. Time has no reset button.
Please treasure every single second of your life – CARE YOUR PRESENT!
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5 thoughts on “Farewell Mum. You are always in my mind”
Hi Edmond, I’m sorry that I hadn’t been keeping up with your blog. When you said on Twitter that you weren’t doing okay, I didn’t know why.
Now I know, and I’m so sorry for the loss of your mom. My mom was also very dear to me and passed away before we were ready to say goodbye to her. She was only 59 years old.
I think you were a wonderful son and I’m sure your mom felt all of your and your family’s love for her. I wish you comfort and peace during this sad time.
Thank you for dropping by.
I really love your blogs and your sharing.
Your mom passed away quite young at 59 but I am quite sure you are a wonderful daughter to her – the most precious to her too.
Take care and let’s live our lives to the fullness.