Related Posts with Thumbnails

Friday, January 9, 2015

A Father's Love

Taciturn and largely expressionless, The Husband has a rather limited range for emotional expression. I know him well so I can see Joy, Anger, Frustration in a seemingly inscrutable face. I also have other information that I have grown to interpret. I can smell The Husband's emotional state.

All I need to do when he comes home at the end of the day is to go near and catch a whiff of him, to know if he had had a good day, or a bad one. So ummm... if I smell this, I tiptoe away. If I smell the other smell, it is safe to bowl him over with a hug. As the years pass and I get heavier, it is much easier to bowl him over.

Children, in general, are not adept at interpreting adult emotion. Toddlers and such respond to overt demonstrations of emotion like smiles, frowns and tones of voice. When the children were small, I put The Husband through speech training to help him say...

- "Good job"
- "Yay"
- "Well done!'
- " I am so proud of you!"
- "Wow!"

Now, you can imagine that when Petunia says the above, there would be something of an exaggerated intonation punctuated by a squeal or two, a smile and a huge hug that would be my excuse for burying my head in my toddlers' bellies just to breathe in their lovely baby smells.

The Husband, before I trained him, said, "It is not bad" in a flat tone of voice, with nary a smile. If you looked carefully you would see his eyes sparkle but the sparkle is so dim and his mouth set in such a sombre line that you would have thought he was praising a funeral.

When The Daughter was a tiny one, she gravitated towards The Husband whenever she felt fear. She somehow instinctively felt that The Husband would better be able to protect her from bad things of every sort from loud noises, to strange people to big dogs. She would come to me if she felt sad because you know, mending broken hearts... that is my specialty.

As The Daughter grew into teenagerhood, I could see (because I knew what to look for) The Husband's love for his daughter. However, he fled the vagaries of her teenage years. Her emotional tantrums scared him silly and his way was to leave her alone and wait for peace to descend upon us again. They spent little time together in her teenage years. He did not want to deal with all that teenage angst you see.

His way of caring was to ask me questions,
- Does she have enough money?
- When will she be home?
- Where has she gone?

And then, too quickly, The Daughter left home.

The Husband has fairly driven me up the wall since October 2014. He did not know how to connect with The Daughter emotionally in the way I always do. So, he drove me nuts with his incessant questions about her.

- Is she back for X'mas?
- Does she have money to spend?
- Shall I send some money?
- How much money does she need?
- Will she run out of money?

Unfortunately for him, The Daughter is financially independent. She has a scholarship that pays for everything and she has been able to find well paying part-time jobs during holidays, weekends... and before university started. She not only doesn't need our money, she also has saved enough to think about investing.

So, The Husband felt emotionally constipated. He had a lot of love to express with his money and she would not allow him to do so. Eventually, The Daughter confessed that it would be a strain on her own financial resources to fly home from Europe just for X'mas 2014 and then fly back again to start school in Geneva, in February 2015. At these words, The Husband swung into action.

"Money? Money? I have money! I will pay your airfare back!" said he, looking no longer constipated.

Now that The Daughter is back, the Husband is overjoyed (inasmuch as a taciturn and expressionless man can be overjoyed). He actually came back home for lunch twice this week. Each time, he would ask "Where is she?" Where he usually spends his evenings clearing work emails, he has been proposing to watch movies with his daughter every night... and then stays up till 1 a.m. to clear his work emails.

The Husband begins to look tired and has panda eyes, but you know, like those toddlers who are tired, he absolutely does not want to go and sleep. You see, he wants to be with his daughter as much as he can before she leaves for Geneva.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Daughter is Home (for a while)

The Daughter is home for a month and her presence has made our lives full again. One can get used to a feeling of emptiness you know. You learn to live with the lack of joy and in a discoloured world,  without realising that vibrance has gone out of it... like a faded photograph. You just get used to the blandness and no longer are aware you are not THAT happy.

Then, when someone refreshes the colours in your photograph, you suddenly see very clearly how faded it had become. The Daughter had been away for so long that I had gotten used to the slightly drab day to day existence between work, eat and sleep. Life had become bland, its colours achromatised.

Now that she is home, there is a sense of fullness and gaiety in our house that renews the senses and refreshes the spirit. The car and the house are filled with her incessant chatter. She is the only person I know who can talk non-stop for 8 hours and she could already do that even when she couldn't really talk properly. She knew what her babble meant even if no one else did. That babble continued right through primary school and secondary school. It used to drive me nuts... and now, it just flows over each one of us (her Father, her Brother and I) like an invigorating breeze.

The Husband is talking more and laughing more this week. I feel soothed and comforted by her presence. 

So... this is what it feels like when a child comes home.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Appeal to Readers of Dr Pet's Book

Dr Pet's book has sold about SGD1000 (in royalties) on Amazon. However, we were still not able to get reviews. Will the readers who ...

(1) ... enjoyed the book
(2) ... have previously bought something from Amazon

... please log into Amazon to write a review? Click HERE.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

If I Die...

I was just staring at The Husband some days ago and my heart was almost bursting with love for the man that I have known for almost 3 decades. I decided that I loved him soooooo much that if I died, I would come back in my spiritual form to keep him from being lonely.

So, I told him that. Very enthusiastically too!

The last thing I expected from him after my heartfelt declaration of deep and everlasting love that would transcend even death, was this utter look of horror on his face. He did not, as it turned out, appreciate my readiness to return to his side, once dead.

I tried very hard to convince him that it would bring our relationship to a whole new level. S**ual relations would be out of this world for him, no? It turns out that he isn't adventurous enough to explore new otherworldly sensations in that area.

I was quite upset to discover that The Husband didn't love me enough to welcome me back in another more ethereal form. So, I asked Smelly Boy if he would be happy if I came back as an ectoplasm to spend time with him. Smelly Boy was very sure that he would not be happy.

The Daughter said pretty much the same thing too.

I actually feel very rejected and unloved. Gee... if any of them died, I would be most happy to welcome them back in whatever form they chose to take because I love them very much. What about you? Would you welcome your loved ones back?