The highlight of my trip was climbing Mount Kinabalu.
I used to live near the base of Mount Kinabalu and never once thought of climbing it. Then I went to England to study and on my orientation day, my professor asked me where I am from and upon hearing the word Kinabalu, immediately said he climbed the mountain few times. I didn’t know where to hide my head in shame and was so embarrassed. I promised myself that one day I will climb Mt Kinabalu.
Most people who plan to climb a mountain would start preparing for the climb months in advance. In my case, I dreamed about it for 20 years and that was all the preparation I did.
Only when we reached the National park did my youngest understand that it really was a big mountain..she was always reading while her siblings and I discussed about our climb and I guess she didn’t pay any attention. She assumed that it was an hour hike, like going for bush walking in Mount Coo’tha. Clearly, she was wrong ( and shocked too).
It took me 4 hours to reach base camp. My children abandoned me half way through because I was ( very) slow and by the time I reached the base camp where we spent the night, they had already finished their dinner and was relaxing.
We had to get up at 2 AM to climb the summit. It was raining and the temp dropped close to zero and our ponchos were not working. We were soaked to the bones and freezing. It was nothing short of hell.
Yaya was crying by the time we descended to the base camp. My heart broke seeing her tears. She told me ” the next time you come up with a crazy idea like this, count me out”
I had to laugh..
The hardest part was climbing down..my knees felt as if the joints were made of chocolate pudding.
The thing is, I didn’t expect my children to finish the climb.. especially my youngest..I think as parents we tend to underestimate our children. It was a big lesson for me..to see their determination and will..
I wanted to see the sunrise from the top of the mountain. It was too cloudy when we made it to the top. So crazy as it sounds, I am going to climb again..in August next year. If anyone wants to join, you are welcome.
I would have like to tell the story..but no time.
Today is the first day of new school year. All three of my children are in high school.
When I started this blog, Yaya was in grade 2. We had just arrived in Vancouver. I remember her first day to school. She wore a pink Barbie top, Barbie jeans and had a Barbie school bag. ( My youngest sister bought all those things for her). I carried baby on my back, held toothless’s and Yaya’s hand and walked to school. I was so worried how my children would cope living in a new country.
How fast time flew. Yaya is now in grade 12, my son in grade 10 and baby is in grade 8.
Last night baby came and lay down in my bed. She does that when she is stressed. So I told her
“You are going to have the best 5 years of your life, starting tomorrow. Work will be heavy and you learn a lot of new things, but trust me when I tell you this, high school years are the best years of your life”
“Are you sure mom?” She asked
and I replied “Of course, think of all the hot guys you meet..you have the choice of 5 year levels of hot guys ( grade 8 -12)”
Baby’s laughter is like shaking a handful of pearls in a glass bottle and while laughing she told me only my mother would tell things like that”
My wish for my children this year are
1. Set your goals high
2. Give your best shot
3. Remember to have fun
4. Be responsible, reliable and respectful.
At home, few things have changed this year. I invested in a giant magnetic board with individual magnets for each of my children. If the notice isn’t on the board minimum 24 hours before the event, I haven’t seen it and if I haven’t seen it, I will not do anything about it. The same rule applies for permission slips for school trips.
My son has to wear school uniform this year and he has to do the laundry and ironing by himself. Doing laundry and Ironing are life skills and he needs to learn.
I have been threatening them that they should make their own lunch, however, I just can’t bear to think of them eating sandwich every single day. So I am still getting up at 6AM to make hot lunch for them.
That is that..