The first memorial service that I attended in my entire life turned out to be for my late mum. It had been one year since her passing. The dreaded day came and now before I knew it, it was now one year since.On 3rd July 2011, we held the first memorial service in memory of the woman of all our life, the woman who to us, the woman of strength and pillar of faith, the woman who held the whole family as one, the woman of great example of wise compassion, the woman who was a great loss to all of us, especially me.
To me, her passing was the greatest loss of my life.No one, no friend, no human could ever take her place. Her passing changed my life completely, everything from dwelling, to personal habits, to food and even to lifestyle.
During her life, I had spent so much time with her. I had done much, talked much and been to many places abroad with her.Many simple places that we frequented brought back memories of our good times, our times of togetherness, our times of confiding of my worrying problems, times of testing new dining and new food, times of strolling in sunny beaches of Singapore, times of bargain shoppings during the Great Singapore Sale every June, time at our favorite shopping haunts, each time we remembered those shops who cheated us or shortchanged us, all these I would remember all to the last day of my life.
Her passing meant not just losing a mother, for she was more than a mother to me, she was my best friend. I had lost the best friend I ever had, someone a friend I had since birth, a friend I could never find again even if I travelled round and round the world to look for one, no one surely could ever take her place.
In my life of many friends that came and went, some good and others bad, siblings and relatives of all kinds and tempers, some had touched me much but she alone touched me the most and she alone had won my heart through and through, without a shadow of doubt, she alone touched my heart so much because she was a rare mother.
Though she had not study much because of the War so she understood not the new modern gadgets of this and that, yet she raised most of us to acquire high educations, many achieving doctorates and masters’ degrees, all with the little she had but with all the great faith and the simplicity she possessed.What a wonderful woman she was, she was the black pearl amongst all gems, the choice jewel and the crown jewels of all diamonds, that’s the kind of mum I had.
She had constantly astounded me with her wit, her humour, her intelligence; her great simple wisdom of her simple life philosophy was always so refreshing and so original.
Yet she could be so practical, never allowing herself to dream on to the horizon and her children starving and wanting, she knew when to stop all those daydreams and went on to take all the household problems firmly and bravely into her stride.
With all her wonderful practical wits, her wise way of living, where else would I go to learn except learning by watching her life and her faith closely?
She was the best teacher of my life.
Always full of compassion, she would teach me to help the poor in the streets, to lend to those in need and never to expect any return. She would sacrifice her best time to give encouragement and to guide her children including me in their difficult times of our life.
She was full of cheer, always smiling, seldom complaining and always calm. Even in the last few painful months of her life where she suffered many unsolved ailments, she would put on a smile to greet her guests, her pastor and her relatives who came to encourage her and to cheer her more.
On 3rd July 2011, the first memorial service was held at the crematorium at the Garden of remembrance, a Christian crematorium in the West.
It was a simple one hour service with her former pastor, some eulogies from 3 children and grandson and then we went on to live our lives to follow the example she had set to us before.After the service, we walked up to both of our parents’ niche and then proceeded to tell her all that we wanted to tell.
As for me, I told her that I missed her terribly, I wished she was with me and how I wanted her to live on for another few years.
Instead she gave me an inspiration to live on, to live well and to live for God, so that one day when my time on earth was up, I would returned to the land that she had gone before, the place where she watched all our movements from Above and she always praying for all her children to return to her Heavenly fold when all our times were due.
So with a simple ceremony and dinner, we awaited to remember her again year by year and for us to complete the race of the good fight on earth and to be with the one who was my greatest loss and be with her for an eternal glorious time soon.
Thanks for reading this memorial blog to remember this wonderful lovely woman, the one I love to remember forever. Amen