Monday, 30 June 2008

OH MY GOD!!!!!

...our hamster Brownie has a baby!!! or shd I say, it's one now, but may hv more later!!!

wanted to change the feeds for them, then suddenly I noticed there's a small 'thing' wriggling on the bedding! IT'S A BABY HAMSTER!!!! just about 2cm long, furless skin, pinkish colour and a little bit scary to be exact! Arrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhh................ YES, I really screamed! and I cant remember how many times hv I said "OH MY GOD" since I saw the bb. really, OH MY GOD!

Now the rest of the 'community' has been extricated fm the cage and sent to their 'holiday home' aka their old cage! hee... Let's see if Brownie will hv more babies in the second half of the evening.

Now, how to take care of bb hamsters?? as if I'm not busy enough...sigh....

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

I cant believe it... son got angry with me after I told him to discard an injured lizard outside the gate!!!

Last night Drew was showering and a lizard fell into the shower and was 'injured' by the hot water. He got Matt to help remove the lizard. It was not moving but gasping for air. So I told Matt to leave it somewhere outside the gate to recuperate on its own. Later Matt came to me with teary eyes and asked if he could keep the injured lizard in a jar till it recovers, before letting it go. I tried explaining to him that it's quite unheard of to keep lizard!? He got so upset with me and refused to talk to me. He claimed that the ants will attack the injured lizard if left on its own. And true enough, when we checked on the lizard later, it was lying dead on the grass patch with ants crawling all over it. This made him more upset and was sniffing away with teary eyes!

I sms hub and told him, "yr chubby angry with me over an injured lizard! Jus bcos I told him to throw it out of the gate!?"

Hub replied: " time you step on an ant he will crush you with his bear hug!"


That's how much he loves animals, of all kinds!

Saturday, 21 June 2008

i'm falling sick...

Head feeling heavy, nose stuffy, throat itchy...catching a cold I think. Have been taking Panadol for Cold and leftose last 2 days. No appetite and feeling so listless. sian....

Thursday, 19 June 2008

few things...

Just a couple of things to update in a rush...

13 Jun - A big THANK YOU to GG, Evo and Jol! Sorry to abbreviate yr names. But don't you find it more 亲切 this way? hee.. You've really brought the Sun into my home and warmth into my heart. Thank you for being there for me during this tough period. I've kept the sms-es that you've sent and will look at them whenever I feel down. They've been very encouraging and it's great to know that you're thinking and cares about me. 衷心感激!

14 Jun - Had a simple Father's Day celebration with my siblings and nieces and nephews. Though not everyone was here, but it was a good get-together. Took this snapshot with Dad, eldest sis and 4th sis. Felt so loved when Dad place his hand around my shoulder. As I've said, he's such a traditional Chinese man, he hardly shows his affection towards us. I guess the discovery of his illness has brought all of us even closer together, and he also realised that we all love him very very much. Dad, we want to celebrate many many more Father's Day with you. Be strong and we'll fight the battle with you.

17 Jun - Overheard Dad calling his niece-in-law in China. He told her about his illness briefly as Mum was around. Then later he went upstairs and called his cousin and told him too. He kept telling them not to worry, everything will be fine after treatment. Even told them that he'll go back and visit them next year after he recovers and regain more strength. Felt very happy that he's so positive, but at the same time feel so worried that he might be disappointed when his condition deteriorates. sigh...I feel so helpless.

18 Jun - Had breakfast with Dad on our usual weekly marketing trip. Dad's favourite is soft-boil eggs, toasted bread and coffee. While eating, I was reminding him that he should refrain fm eating soft-boil eggs once he starts chemo since doctor has specifically said all his food has to be properly and thoroughly cooked. Then I told him not to worry as I've heard of a friend's mother being diagnosed of stage 4 lung cancer and still managed to live more than 3 years with chemo. I'm sure he'll be able to pull thru this ordeal. He said very positively in Chinese, "I am not worried, why do you all get so worried for me? Living up to my age, having all my children and grandchildren so close to me, I'm very contented already. If I am cured, it is a bonus. If not then it's just destined that I've lived enough." Hearing his words I've to fight back my tears. Dad, you're so strong! We've really under-estimated your ability to handle all these. I feel even more guilty for keeping it from you initially. I'm sorry...

19 Jun - Ha! Something that put a bright smile on Dad's and Mum's face. Dad strike 4D!! Tho not very much, but he's happy! Drove him to claim the prize money just now and he was joking and laughing with Mum the whole journey. Glad that he's laughing.

However, while walking up the stairs, he told me that he's beginning to feel breathless. And he checked his weight this morning, it's only 50.5kg!! He's been losing weight since his discharge even though his appetite has been really good. Can see some silent frustration on his face. I really feel so so so helpless. What can I do to help him? Gonna buy more Vit B Complex and Iron tablets for him this afternoon. He's already started on his Lingzhi and I dunno what else can I make for him to build up his strength. He needs to be stronger before he starts his chemo. what can I do what can I do what else can I do???

Friday, 13 June 2008

Should I be happy?

I'm 40 today. But I don't feel any happiness on this day. In fact I feel very empty. Nic snuggled into my bed this morning, jus as I was waking up, to give me a kiss and a "Happy Birthday"! He beat dh to it! haha.. He's such a sweet boy, tho he can be such a devil too!! hee...

Went to Nat'l Cancer Centre with Dad on Wed. As arranged, the oncologist told Dad his condition. What saddened me was that he also told Dad the stage and that the treatment is just to control the cancer cells and prolong his life only. Dad was extremely calm and quiet when told of all these. But Sis and I were quite upset and confused at the same time. The doc also explained the procedure of the chemotherapy to us. Dad simply said ok to the treatment, no questions asked. Now everything's been arranged. Dad will do another CT scan on 30 Jun, see the oncologist again on 1 Jul and start his chemotherapy on 2 Jul. They will be using just one medicine on a 28-day cycle for him. Which means he'll have one injection on day 1 (2 Jul), another at day 8 (9 Jul) and a third on day 15 (16 Jul). After that he'll rest for 2 weeks and back to see the oncologist again on day 28 (29 Jul). If all is well, he'll start another cycle as above. At the end of 2 cycles, they'll do another CT scan to check on the progress and determine whether to carry on with the same drug or to change.

When we stepped out of the oncologist's room, the first thing Dad said was: "Don't tell your mum. She'll get all upset and worried unnecessarily." We tried to comfort Dad but instead he told us not to worry, he's fine. He said: "I'm ok, don't worry. Doctors always exaggerate the condition just so that we will be compelled to return for the treatments. I'll be fine la." I was not sure if Dad was really so calm and positive about it, or he's just putting up a front for us. But I know for sure, Dad is not someone who'll cry his sorrows out. He's really a traditional Chinese man who'll never shed a tear in front of anyone.

Anyway, the last 2 days he's still as per normal. Eating normally, sleeping normally. He's very careful not to discuss anything about his condition when Mum is around. That shows how much he loves and cares about her. I tried convincing him to do a trip to his hometown Putian in Fujian, China, but he refused. He said no point going now since he's not feeling well and cant move around for long periods, he'll go next year when he's recovered. Then I tried coaxing him about the China trip again yesterday and he told me this: "我知道你想什么.我没担心,你们也不需要担心.等明年我身体好些我们再回去(中国).如果真的有什么,也是没法子的事,不要太在意..."!!?? sigh...this sets me thinking whether he understood exactly what the oncologist told him? or he's really very positive and gonna fight and win a good battle? I pray, I wish, I hope it's the latter.

Anyway, Dad, I'm so proud of you. We've definitely under-estimated your strength. I will try my best to remain strong and support you in whatever way you may need. And most importantly, I want you to know that I LOVE YOU, ever so deeply.....

Tuesday, 10 June 2008


will be going to Nat'l Cancer Centre tomorrow morning with Dad. My mind is quite blank. It's filled with fear I think. Pray....I'm thinking. But pray to who? I've no faith in anything. Nothing can give me an answer to all the 'whys' I have in my mind.

The medical social worker spoke to me this morning and she had helped me email the oncologist whom we'll be seeing tomorrow. She explained our situation to him and asked for his assistance to break the news to Dad in the softest way possible. However, he turned down our request to keep from Dad the stage of the illness as it's against his professional ethics. He will hv to tell if Dad ask about it. Can understand his difficulties. He has to respect his patients and be 100% honest with them.

This afternoon was going through some photo albums with Mum. It's those photos taken early last year when Dad, bro, SIL, BIL and cousin went to Xiamen, China. For a moment I was in shock! Dad looked so different in the pictures! He was much fleshier and his cheeks were more chubby. I turned to look at Dad, sitting on his arm chair in singlet and his boxer. 我的心好酸.... he looked so frail, his skin so wrinkled and his cheeks all sunken. I feel so guilty. Why didn't I realise earlier that he's losing weight? Why didn't I realise earlier that he's becoming so frail? Why didn't I pay more attention on him? Why? why? why? why????

I am so afraid of losing him. I am so afraid of losing him. I am so afraid of losing him.............

Monday, 9 June 2008

laughter and tears do mix

Kids' school holidays is already into the 3rd week. Had a chat with Drew's FT and she was 'hinting' very directly that I shd start him on his preparation/revision for PSLE already. Gosh! It's just June!? but then again, he really need to start early since he's always taking his own sweet time. Moreover he didn't push himself to his potential during SA1, so we really need to push push push push....sigh...

Now I hear 3 kids, 10, 10 and 12, playing TOYS in their bedroom!! yup, my older boys with their cousin. My boys used to fight a lot with this cousin, Ru, simply bcos she's a girl! Now I think they're ok to involve her in their games already. dun ask me how they managed to sort things out?! it's kids' stuff.

anyway, talk to Dad last wk with 4th sis. Told him doc said he has tumour in his lungs and lymph nodes and there are 'bad' cells, and may need to hv chemo treatment. Very careful not to use the C word. His reaction came as a surprise (or shd I say a confusion) to us. He was so calm and just said "ok lor, then we go see the specialist lor." He didn't question anything like we had expected. Neither did he exclaim or anything. He only grumbled that the docs didn't say anything while he was in hospital, then now suddenly come back and say that there's bad cells and all. Yet they still cant tell him why he just cant stop coughing. Sis and I actually didn't know what else to say bcos this was not the reaction we've expected, or preparing ourselves for. So we just left it as that.

Seeing him cough really pains me. The cough comes and goes, but whenever it comes, it'll be so bad that he's like choking! His face turns all red and he seems so out-of-breath. He's been telling me this 2 days that his right chest hurts whenever he coughs. I'm wondering if it's bcos of his cough, or has his cancer cells started to spread more rapidly?? I'm scared....

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

today is the day

Don't ask me why I choose today. I also don't know. Probably it's exactly a week fm Dad's appt at Nat'l Cancer Centre. Probably it's long enough for him to digest the truth before seeing the doctor, but also short enough to cause the least pain? But whatever, it's definitely gonna cause him pain and worries. We're praying that he'll not go into despair.

We're taking the advice of the medical social worker which 4th sis and I met about 2 wks ago. We'll tell him it's tumour with some bad cells that doctor suggested using chemotherapy to treat it. It's a delicate task as we'll hv to observe his reaction and decide how much to divulge. Whether or not he'll guess the truth out of what we're gonna tell him. Tough job. Gonna be tougher than being a psychiatrist or counsellor. My mind will hv to go very fast, faster than Dad to guess what he'll ask and how to answer him. Thankfully 4th sis will be with me and we can 'cover' for each other when either one falls short of words or gets too emotional to talk.

Dad's cough has been getting worse. Even the cough mixture is not of much help now. Whenever the cough starts, he'll cough till his face goes all red and nearing gagging. Seeing him that way really cuts deep into my heart. Even in the middle of the night, I'll startle up fm my sleep when I hear his cough. I hate cough myself, and I know how uncomfortable it is. He just told me yesterday that the cough is getting worse and now when the cough gets too hard, he'll feel the pain in his abdomen muscles as he coughs. Dad, I wish I can relief all these for you with a magic wand. But I cant. I feel so useless.

Went to get additional supply of the cough mixture fm the GP yesterday. He was the one who first raised the suspicion over Dad's swollen lymph nodes in early April. Told him about Dad's diagnosis and consulted him on the need for second opinion. He told me the specialist, Dr Tan E H whom Dad will be seeing next wk was his classmate in medical school and has more than 15yrs of experience in oncology. He feels that Dr Tan is someone whom we can hv confidence in treating Dad. However, if we insist on having second opinion or alternative TCM treatment, we can still request for an additional set of all the CT scan films fm SGH. This way, Dad will not hv to endure going thru another round of all the radiative investigations. Will keep his suggestion in mind in case we need to seek alternative treatment.

anyway, keeping my fingers and toes crossed now. hope that everything will go smoothly when we talk to Dad this afternoon. Hope he'll take it well and stay positive and strong to face it. Dad, we'll all be behind you. Stay strong!