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Quotable Quotes

We should make ourselves stop trying to explain our own difficulties. Our first impulse is to try to account for them, figure out why what has happened did happen. Sometimes such an effort is beneficial: more often it is distinctly harmful. It leads to introspection, self-pity, and vain regret; and almost invariably it creates within us a dangerous mood of confusion and despair. Many of life’s hard situations cannot be explained. They can only be endured, mastered, ad gradually forgotten. Once we learn this truth, once we resolve to use all our energies managing life rather than trying to explain life, we take the first and most obvious step toward significant accomplishment.

 

Only as we yield to the inexorable, only as we accept the situations which we find ourselves powerless to change, can we free ourselves from fatal inward tensions, and acquire that inward quietness amid which we can seek – and usually find – ways by which our limitations can be made at least partially endurable.

[…]

Why is [this] so difficult for most people? because most of us were told in childhood that the way to conquer a difficulty is to fight it and demolish it. That theory is, of course, the one that should be taught to young people. Many of the difficulties we encounter in youth are not permanent; and the combination of a heroic courage, a resolute will, and a tireless persistence will often – probably usually – break them down. Bu tin later years the essential elements in the situation change. We find in our little world prison-walls which no amount of battering will demolish. Within those walls we must spend our day – spend them happily, or resentfully. Under these new circumstances we must deliberately reverse our youthful technique. We must gain victory, not by assaulting the walls, but by accepting them. Only when this surrender is made can we assure ourselves of inward quietness, and locate the net step on the road to ultimate victory.

 

 

—-James Gordon Gilkey

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Life of Pi

Dearies

Find a chance to read or watch The Life of Pi by Yann Martel, interpreted into a movie by Ang Lee

Some meaningful quotes r here:

From the movie:

Writer: It is a lot to take in–to figure out what it all means.
Adult Pi Patel: If it happens, it happens, why should it have meaning?

Pi Patel: And then Richard Parker, my fierce companion, the terrible one who kept me alive, disappeared forever from my life.
[we see Pi lying on the sand when a group of locals run down the beach towards him]
Pi Patel: [voice over] After a few hours, a member of my own species found me. He left and returned with a group who carried me away.
[we see Pi sobbing as he’s being carried away]
Pi Patel: [voice over] I wept like a child, not because I was overwhelmed at having survived, although I was. I was weeping because Richard Parker left me so unceremoniously. It broke my heart.

Adult Pi Patel: I suppose in the end, the whole of life becomes an act of letting go, but what always hurts the most is not taking a moment to say goodbye.

Adult Pi Patel: Even when God seemed to have abandoned me, he was watching. Even when he seemed indifferent to my suffering, he was watching. And when I was beyond all hope of saving, he gave me rest. Then he gave me a sign to continue my journey.

Adult Pi Patel: Faith is a house with many rooms.
Writer: But no room for doubt?
Adult Pi Patel: Oh plenty, on every floor. Doubt is useful, it keeps faith a living thing. After all, you cannot know the strength of your faith until it is tested.

Pi: Above all… it is important not to lose hope.

From the book:
“I must say a word about fear. It is life’s only true opponent. Only fear can defeat life. It is a clever, treacherous adversary, how well I know. It has no decency, respects no law or convention, shows no mercy. It goes for your weakest spot, which it finds with unnerving ease. It begins in your mind, always … so you must fight hard to express it. You must fight hard to shine the light of words upon it. Because if you don’t, if your fear becomes a wordless darkness that you avoid, perhaps even manage to forget, you open yourself to further attacks of fear because you never truly fought the opponent who defeated you.”

“Life is so beautiful that death has fallen in love with it, a jealous, possessive love that grabs at what it can. But life leaps over oblivion lightly, losing only a thing or two of no importance, and gloom is but the passing shadow of a cloud…”

“It is true that those we meet can change us, sometimes so profoundly that we are not the same afterwards, even unto our names.”

“When you’ve suffered a great deal in life, each additional pain is both unbearable and trifling.”

“If you stumble about believability, what are you living for? Love is hard to believe, ask any lover. Life is hard to believe, ask any scientist. God is hard to believe, ask any believer. What is your problem with hard to believe?”

“Dare I say I miss him? I do. I miss him. I still see him in my dreams. They are nightmares mostly, but nightmares tinged with love. Such is the strangeness of the human heart.”

“It’s important in life to conclude things properly. Only then can you let go. Otherwise you are left with words you should have said but never did, and your heart is heavy with remorse.”

“You must take life the way it comes at you and make the best of it.”

I still cannot understand how he could abandon me so unceremoniously, without any sort of goodbye, without looking back even once. That pain is like an axe that chops at my heart.”

“To lose a brother is to lose someone with whom you can share the experience of growing old, who is supposed to bring you a sister-in-law and nieces and nephews, creatures who people the tree of your life and give it new branches. To lose your father is to lose the one whose guidance and help you seek, who supports you like a tree trunk supports its branches. To lose your mother, well, that is like losing the sun above you. It is like losing–I’m sorry, I would rather not go on.”

“You might think I lost all hope at that point. I did. And as a result I perked up and felt much better.”

“The world isn’t just the way it is. It is how we understand it, no? And in understanding something, we bring something to it, no?
Doesn’t that make life a story?”

“These people fail to realize that it is on the inside that God must be defended, not on the outside. They should direct their anger at themselves. For evil in the open is but evil from within that has been let out. The main battlefield for good is not the open ground of the public arena but the small clearing of each heart.”

“All living things contain a measure of madness that moves them in strange, sometimes inexplicable ways. This madness can be saving; it is part and parcel of the ability to adapt. Without it, no species would survive.”

“The reason death sticks so closely to life isn’t biological necessity; it’s envy. Life is so beautiful that death has fallen in love with it, a jealous, possessive love that grabs at what it can.”

“What a terrible thing it is to botch a farewell. I am a person who believes in form, in the harmony of order. Where we can, we must give things a meaningful shape. For example – I wonder – could you tell my jumbled story in exactly one hundred chapters, not one more, not one less? I’ll tell you, that’s one thing I have about my nickname, the way the number runs on forever. It’s important in life to conclude things properly. Only then can you let go. Otherwise you are left with words you should have said but never did, and your heart is heavy with remorse. That bungled goodbye hurts me to this day. I wish so much that I’d had one last look at him in the lifeboat, that I’d provoked him a little, so that I was on his mind. I wish I had said to him then – yes, I know, to a tiger, but still – I wish I had said, “Richard Parker, it’s over. We have survived. Can you believe it? I owe you more gratitude than I can express I couldn’t have done it without you. I would like to say it formally: Richard Parker, thank you. Thank you for saving my life. And now go where you must. You have known the confined freedom of a zoo most of your life; now you will know the free confinement of a jungle. I wish you all the best with it. Watch out for Man. He is not your friend. But I hope you will remember me as a friend. I will never forget you , that is certain. You will always be with me, in my heart. What is that hiss? Ah, our boat has touched sand. So farewell, Richard Parker, farewell. God be with you.”
― Yann Martel, Life of Pi

“That’s what fiction is about, isn’t it, the selective transforming of reality? The twisting of it to bring out its essence?”
― Yann Martel, Life of Pi

“Life will defend itself no matter how small it is.”

“The presence of God is the finest of rewards.”

“If there’s only one nation in the sky, shouldn’t all passports be valid for it?”

“Misery loves company, and madness calls it forth.”

“How bitterly glad I am to see you. You bring joy and pain in equal measure. Joy because you are with me, but pain because it won’t be for long. What do you know about the sea? Nothing. What do I know about the sea? Nothing. Without a driver this bus is lost. Our lives are over. Come aboard if your destination is oblivion– It should be our next stop. We can sit together. You can have the window seat, if you want. But it’s a sad view. Oh enough of this disembling. Let me say plainly: I love you, I love you, I love you. I love you, I love you, I love you. Not the spiders, please.”

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The second month

22/3/2013

Precious! happi 2 months!

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It has never crossed my mind that I would have been able to feed so well to get Huaihao this chubby .

But I did it despite all the difficult attempts at breastfeeding in the v beginning .

So glad I persevered.

Anyway,
My day isn’t like any one before n so r my nights.

Becoz of Huaihao .

I mean, I can wake up to breastfeeding him in the wee hours n still feel alert n happy n continue with hanging the laundry .

It is 4am now n I m writing the blog. Fearing that I might lose my train of thoughts if I hadn’t .

🙂

He gives me strength to break frontiers n I remind myself to seek a new pathway just looking at him.

I love it that I m tired n worried n sad but just looking I forget these all n only think about making him happy.

Moving towards the second month, HuaiHao tried many new things。

Like the pacifier。

HuaiHao has a temper, n would flare up when the milk isn’t with him when he wants it. He didnt want to be on his own, but wants to be carried around very much. And when this need isnt met, he would flare up as well. There were also times when he is sleepy and would cry.

We tried giving him the pacifier.

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It used to b that he would b at my breast when he cries but now he would b using the pacifier. When he couldn’t get any milk out of it, he would throw out the pacifier.

He also tried taking the bus to c Dr Ngiam on his first month checkup .
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That’s him at Dr Soon’s clinic.

The next thing he tried is the pink chair ah Seng bought for Qinzhi

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Then, the stroller Seng bought for qinzhi
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Now a few days into the 1st month, Huaihao has earned himself a few other nicknames, from xiaolongbao, characteristic of his plump cheeks to bak bao n the newest– ah pong— bestowed by ah mei

These days, Huaihao seems more contented with breast feeding , he seems to b able to derive enough. I guess my supply has finally matched his demand somewhat.

When hungry, he pushes his fist into his mouth. How clever.

I loved it when he feeds n stretches after a feed. He never fails to amuse me with his varied expressions, i wished i had a phone camera to record but I know I will always remember them.

And here towards the second month, this is how haohao feeds.

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I m into chit chatting with him these days.

He is smiling a lot more n talking more!

After these few years into motherhood , I m for the first time, left alone with my child at home.

But there was no fear in me. Just, DO it.
Circumstances maketh man.

No one recorded my first bathing experience for Huaihao, n it didn’t matter to me so much because I have experienced it for myself. We were alone n we chatted.

He would respond with oohs n aahs.

And I would leave him alone by the window after bath while I tended to housework.

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There were times when I wondered if I wanted to b a stay at home mom at all, when Huaihao fusses n I couldn’t get what he wants. And there were times when I felt disgusted with myself, fat n messy, breasts spilling everywhere.

But then his smile would drive away all. I remembered Dr Ngiam’s words— to enjoy him .

After 303 days on mar 4, about 6 weeks after Huaihao is born, I got my period back.

It is 6 mar today. Huaihao has settled into a sort of routine. He sleeps after a feed at 7 plus 8 n would wake at about midnight , then once in the middle of the night then morning.

It is 11 mar today n his routine has changed. Haohao is growing.
Fast.

I tried to bring to mind how haohao looked like when he was born. The image seemed a bit far now.

He looks like this now. 11 days shy of his 2nd month.
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His smiles were infectious, when I saw them, I would follow immediately unthinkingly.

And 公公says Huaihao looks like me when I was a baby. And just as i bawled till i was black in the face, Huaihao did the same. He gave me a chance to look at myself when I didn’t know me.

On this day mar 15, mommy brought qinzhi n Huaihao to pasir ris for a staycation .

He has earned himself yet a few nicknames to this date, 1 wk shy of 2 mths.
Seng calls Huaihao 龙弟弟, 阿妹calls him ah pong, davina calls him yne yne , meaning round. Mama calls him Lui gong or 雷公.

Whilst qinzhi calls him Pai Pai : naughty.

Here Huaihao is carried by all

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He smiles more often these days n coos to my chatting. I so love it!

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Then when he sleeps.

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I had the privilege to observe him n to simply appreciate him sleeping at pasir ris.

And I had to ask: what is in Huaihao ‘s sleep? Who is in there?

And he gives me the opportunity to sleep like he does.

It is these times that I realize how so v wrong to not capture or solidify these previous moments in photo.

We have been taking so little photos n videos of Huaihao n I m feeling so wrong.

Theres just this way to growing up n missing it now means missing it for good, it’s not something u can make up for.

And I m beginning to look into his eyes to see myself. Just like when qinzhi was little.

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There were times when he would look at me without blinking . There would b this silence .

But the silence was so filled. I almost could feel him checking me: did u do the things u want? R u truthful to yourself? Did u try ur v best?

I seem to hear him .

And I find myself feeling guilty all at once.

As we chatted, I told him he is precious, v precious just like qinzhi

And Huaihao tried for the first time to b on his tummy 2 days short of 2 months on 20 mar, 公公’s bday

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That evening, we went for dinner at ah mei’s yiyi’s workplace— Fullerton hotel

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Many at times, Huaihao would want to b carried even in sleep. Daddy does that most often, ever since confinement. N for close to an hr or hours till his back n arms would hurt.

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Whenever I m tired or worried, I m reminded of 2 things:
To enjoy him as dr Ngiam have said n
To create new pathways

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Thank u, my precious!
For trying me in more ways than one, stretching my capabilities n helping me achieve breakthroughs.

Be well be happy.

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4 years 1 month

19/3/2013

as Huaihao moved toward the second month, qinzhi geared towards 4yrs 1 month.

She has grown up to b a pretty lady, with big beautiful eyes that u can’t stop looking at.

There was this day that daddy was on night shift n qinzhi says to popo:”我们今天跟mommy睡觉,不然她一个人。”

好温暖!

When Popo ask her to bathe, qinzhi would say: “heok kun cik a (rest a while)”

哈哈!

N Qinzhi is so grown up!
Mommy brought qinzhi n Huaihao to pasir ris for a staycation over the weekend n
Here she begins her Kok Kok shoe regime
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And playing princess

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在pasir ris发现,沁芝的福建话说得好好,会对舅舅们说:mai seo hun(不要吸烟)

听到豪哥哥说wat the f,她立即说:不要讲那个坏话。

问她怎么知道那是坏话?

她说:我觉得嘛。

这就是所谓的直觉了。父母应该悉心保护的一块。

一般上都是沁芝自己来住,这次她看mommy和弟弟也来,特别兴奋。姨姨开冷气,她房门开了关,关又开。

她看到mommy在房里喂奶,会主动关上门。

这个时候的沁芝,已经会自己穿睡衣尿片。

她叫怀皓pai pai,这么呼他,要不就叫他ah boy a,非常好听!她会给弟弟唱歌,或和怀皓聊天。

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而她最爱的就是拍照!

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因为有了怀皓,很多时候无法第一时间respond to沁芝。总是觉得有些过意不去。比如,总是要沁芝等一等,或小声一点。

mommy连故事书都无法每晚陪沁芝看。心里真的觉得对不起沁芝。

但我尽量在午觉前继续和沁芝说故事的习惯。争取在怀皓睡觉的时候或任何时候,抱抱这个大宝贝。紧紧拥她入怀,告诉她:

i love u!

我亲爱的宝贝,happy 4years 1month, may u b well n happy!

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Answering the call

DailyOM – Taking Responsibility for Your Destiny

There are those of us who believe that our lives are predestined and that we should resign ourselves to our lots in life.

Yet the truth is that it is up to each one of us to decide what that destiny will be.

While each of us is born with a life purpose, it is up to us whether or not we will say yes to fulfilling it. And just like when we choose what to eat, who to keep company with, and whether to turn right or left when we leave our home everyday, choosing to say yes to your destiny is a decision that can only be realized when you take action to make that choice a reality.

Whether you believe it is your destiny to be a parent, an adventurer, an artist, a pioneer, or a spiritual guru, saying yes to your destiny is only the first step.

While manifesting your destiny starts with knowing what you want and believing you can attain your goals, there are then the actions that must be taken and the decisions to be made before your destiny can truly happen.

When you take responsibility for fulfilling your destiny and begin acting with the intention of doing so, you not only take fate into your own hands, but also you become the hands of your own fate.

Doorways inevitably open for you to step through, and every choice you make can be a creative act toward realizing your goals and dreams.

You begin to follow your instincts and intuition, recognize opportunities when they are presented to you, and seize those golden moments. You also begin to recognize the decisions that may not serve this greater picture and can more easily push them aside.

Remembering that the decision to fulfill your destiny is always a choice can be empowering.

Knowing you are fulfilling your destiny because you want to, rather than because you have to, can make a huge difference. When you are freed from obligation, obstacles in your way become challenges to be overcome, and the journey becomes an adventure rather than the obligatory steps you are being forced to take.

Your destiny may be waiting for you, but whether or not you meet your destiny is up to you. Your fate is in your hands.

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Being creative alone

Some nice ideas on creativity n solitude

“In order to be open to creativity, one must have the capacity for constructive use of solitude. One must overcome the fear of being alone.”
~ Rollo May

Be silent so that life can speak to you. Silence can be delightful and extremely powerful if you just give it a chance.

All artists spend a great deal of time in their own company working in isolation.

Solitary time is fundamental to being creative. If you want to unlock your creative self you will need to get used to spending time with yourself.

But spending time alone is one of the best ways of giving your unconscious mind access to your conscious mind.

Creativity thrives in solitude because here you can listen to your thoughts, go deep inside yourself and focus on the here and now.

But don’t confuse “being alone” with “being lonely.” They are two very different states and provoke different emotions. In solitude you begin to connect with whatever it is you need to achieve. You can become one hundred per cent absorbed in what you are doing, lost in your element. Time alone allows you to experiment, to fail and to succeed. You are not on view; that comes later, so in your quiet time you can peacefully organize your thoughts and make sense of experiences. For many artists it is the time when they feel totally alive.