I’ve been out of commission for the last 15 days!!
To my readers, my deepest apologies. 12 of those days I was ill! Very ill in fact!
A nasty virus that makes its rounds on the island decided it was time to pay me and my family a visit. Having a sick child is worrisome enough. But having a sick parent, especially if the sick parent is Mom, means that whatever home system you have set up, is down.
It may be that I’ve reached an age where the body does not rebound as quickly as it should or that this particular virus is a debilitating one that requires countless of small blue-and-white pills to put me in a comatose state while my body fights for the next 72 hours to kick bad-ass virus butt.
While in that state, I vaguely remember my kids visiting, although my son confessed that he was just checking to make sure that I was still comatose. You see, in that state, he has a taste of LIBERTY. There was no Mom demanding that he practice the scales for his upcoming piano exam. No Mom to remind him of the books he has to read for book reports dispensed by his school teachers. No Mom nagging him to memorize the scripts for the Chinese AND English Show and Tell due in the first weeks of Term 3.
My son could do whatever he wants. That means days of 12-hour TV marathons, staying in jammys till mid-day and eating meals in front of the TV. Here’s a sample of our interaction during this period…
Son: “Mom, are you ok?”
Me: “Mmmm-hmmm…” Did that sound like a “Yes” to you?
Son: “Mom, can we watch TV and eat dinner?”
Me: “Mmmm-hmmm…” I groaned.
Son: “Mom, can we watch a movie before bed?”
Me: “Mmmm-hmmm…” I mumbled…
Then, as the virus slowly left my body, the guilt set in! I had fallen ill during the school holidays! And I’ve recovered in time for the LAST WEEK of school holidays. All our exciting plans to visit the zoo, spend entire days at the Universal Studios, have staycations, explore new cracks and nooks of our sunny island were discarded.
Oh, the guilt carried by the fallen mom! Yes, for 12 days I was genuinely very ill (I have a medical certificate to prove it) and my kids were very liberated.
They did NOTHING! There were NO extra holiday programmes to attend. No commitments to fulfil. No assessments to finish. No instructions to execute. Just days and days of doing nothing.
They were happy to be out of commission too. Apart from spending days watching new and re-runs of cartoons, past and present, it turns out that my son started a trend catching butterflies in our small little garden downstairs, while my daughter found joy meeting random friends for play throughout the day.
They did nothing exciting. Just hours and days of endless free play – a rare commodity for modern Singaporean children who are bred on structure play and endless classes. Ergo, having nothing to do was new and therefore more exciting than a pre-planned vacation.
So, despite my extended convalescent period, the kids had THE best holiday ever – doing Nothing!