Monday, 23 May 2011

End of problem : Commit Suicide..?

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP): Kenyan Olympic marathon champion Sammy Wanjiru committed suicide by jumping from a balcony shortly after a domestic dispute involving his wife and another woman, police said Monday. In the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Wanjiru became the first Kenyan to win a gold medal in the marathon, finishing in an Olympic-record 2 hours, 6 minutes, 32 seconds. He was 24 when he committed suicide on 16th May 2011.

BANDUNG, Indonesia : On a bright sunny day in January 2011, a 20-year-old rich guy drove his Z4 BMW to the bridge, got out from the car and jumped.  He died on the spot.  Reason: his parents divorced and his girlfriend left him.

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia : Last Friday night, 20th of May 2011, I had to rush an acquaintance of mine to Emergency Room at 9pm for his attempted suicide.  His mouth was frothy from drinking a big bottle of facial cleanser.  He was 28 years old.  Reason : broken up with his girlfriend.  Luckily he survived.

According to The Star Online news, The National Suicide Registry Malaysia (NSRM) estimated that between January and August last year, a total of 425 people in Malaysia committed suicide, averaging 60 per month.  The suicide rate is so high that government opened a BEFRIENDER hotline for anyone who is depressed. The hotline is tended by professional psychologist and psychiatrist.

When we read such news, it's easy for us to judge that those people who committed suicide are weak and do not have strong faith in their religions. 

When two close relatives told me that they wanted to commit suicide, I was speechless.  People around me know those two people as independent strong women who lived happy lives, financially secured, had beautiful children, devoted to their religions and did a lot of charity works.  So when they told me they wanted to end their lives... I was totally shocked. 

Well, we never know what people feel and think. 

From the outside we sometimes envy those who have wealths, trophies, beauties, high achievements, perfect families, beautiful houses, fast cars, etc.  But we don't actually know what they really feel inside. Some of them are lonely, some are stressed out of having to keep the image, some are scared of being kidnapped, some are sad for not having anybody to love, some just feel empty inside. 

Now.. another scenario:

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia : Yvone Foong, diagnosed with Neurofibromatosis Type 2 in July 2002, she has become deaf in both ears. She was also born with an under-developed left eye. Everyday she is researching on ways to prolong her life.  She went thru a lot of surgeries, participated in drug experiments, wrote books and gave a lot of motivational speeches on the NF disease.

BANDUNG, Indonesia : Rheza Christian, diagnosed with  Alveolar Soft Part Sarcoma (ASPS), a very rare cancer which resists radiation and chemotherapy.  So far nobody has survived this cancer.  He was 28 when the doctor told him that he was in Stage 4 on May 2010.  He did a lot of researches, tried all kind of medications, participated in experiements, amputated his leg, had his tumours in brain removed, lost movements of his arms, and still determined to fight the cancer and live his live to the fullest.  His friends, relatives, and I are inspired by his cheerful attitude.  He even said that cancer has taught him a lot of good things about life. He said HE WAS LUCKY to have a lot of people who love and support him.

I always remember what my teacher told me : God will always try us with problems in life.  It's up to us whether we want to turn the problems into chaos and blame God, or to solve the problems and make us stronger.

In a lame language : If life gives you shit, you can either swear and blame life (or worse, other people) or you can convert the shit into fertilizer and make profit out of it.

Another good quote I like : If you keep on looking up to the sky, you will fall down into the hole on the ground. But if you keep on looking down to the ground, you will ignore the rains and thunders that might come.  Meaning : look up to successful people for motivation & inspiration and look at those who have less to make us appreciate and thankful of what we have.

Of course, it's easier said than done. But at least, let's try.......

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

MARRIED not FOR LOVE

I recalled a conversation with a new friend over lunch 6 yrs ago.  He asked me," Did you marry for love or for something else?"

I was shocked.  How could a person who knew me for only 2 months dare to ask such a personal question..!! I was offended and replied, " Of course I did, what kind of a woman do you think I am?"

Now it was his turn to be surprised, seeing my reaction.  He said," What do you mean what kind of a woman?  Of course you are a very nice woman.  It has nothing to do with my question." 

"So... You married for love?" he asked again.

"Yes I did."

"Well... I am going to get a wife next week," he said.  "I've never met her but I believe my parents picked the most suitable girl for me.  She is a computer scientist graduated from Stanford University. Looking at her picture, she looks like a nice girl."

I was like...????????

My friend was a software engineer graduated from MIT.  He was originally from Bombay, working as an expat in Malaysia for 2 years.  He said he was getting married not for love but out of necessity to continue the family trees.  The girl who was supposed to be his wife married him because he came from a good family, smart, financially stable and his family allowed her to pursue her career after marriage.

I grew up being a hopeless romantic watching When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, Notting Hill, korean dramas, disney princess movies and soap operas.  According to those movies, two people get married because they are in love.  If a woman married a man she doesn't love, she is not a good woman.  The same goes for men.
 

While westerners can insist that love is the only reason for one to get married, unfortunately in other parts of the world it is not always the case. 

People get married for all kind of reasons.  Some for companionship, some for family ties, some for protection, some for love, some for money, some for business, some for survival, etc. 

During my 10-years stay in KL, I met a lot of couples who got married NOT for love.  Most of them were match-made by their relatives or friends.  Some of them got married because they were "getting old" and had to get married before their "market values" going further down.  Some of them got married because they wanted to have children to carry the family lines.

Can I say that they are bad couple..?? Not at all... In fact, I grew to admire them.

All their marriages last long, at least until now, they are all still married.  When I asked them how to get married with someone they barely knew.  They all said that both parties learned to tolerate and accomodate each other in the marriage so that it was a win-win situation for the wife, husband, wife's families and husband's families.  All of them said they had responsibilities to their parents to make their marriages work so they would do anything to have good marriages.

Meeting them had opened my eyes and heart not to judge other people's choices of lives. Anybody can get married with whatever reasons they have.  As long as both parties understand the "terms and conditions" and WILLING TO LIVE WITH THE CONSEQUENCES, by all mean... get married...!!!

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Follow your heart.... NOT..!!!

Star Newspapers of Malaysia reported :
  • 05th May 2011 : A woman fell for a con's artist's sob stories on Facebook ended up being cheated of RM1.1 million  (U$380,000).
  • 04th May 2011 : A 25-yr-old NUCLEAR ENGINEER was murdered by her 60-yr-old boyfriend who worked as a cook (had a wife with few children).  Reason : jealousy, she wanted to end the relationship.
Last month : A friend's 50-yr-old AEROSPACE SCIENTIST cousin left her children and went off to marry her 26-yr-old gym instructor whom she knew for one week.  Now all relatives are helping the children to cope up while she is enjoying her NEW LIFE.  I don't know how long this new life will be bright and sunny...

There are so many other similar stories that i came across in the past few years.  Every time I heard the story, my first reaction was, " Don't they think?"

The victims are not unintelligent people, most of them are "smarter" than me, well.... at least academically.  But they could fall easily into the prey of con men/women.  95% of the victims were female.  Why..??

Because...            
           Women rely too much on their FEELINGs instead of their LOGICs.
 ( Men with stronger artistic traits are said to also rely on their feelings more than their logics)

Though I am a normal sentimental woman who loves pink, romantic movies, and cooking... I strongly believe that most of the decisions that I made in my life were processed EQUALLY thru my logic and feeling.  Of course, I also made a lot of crazy decisions that left me dumb-founded one week later, like going on "meat" shopping spree when I got stressed out.  I was so irritated with the Immigration Officer's attitude one day.... She made me go to my regular butcher shop afterwards and bought kilos of different cuts of meat. One week later, my freezer was still packed with rib eyes, lamb shank, T-bones, etc. and I had no idea what to do with it anymore.  But to my defence, that's not a Life Altering Decision.  That's my body response system when I get stressed out. 

God creates human beings with the perfect 5 senses to See, Touch, Hear, Taste, and Smell.  In addition to that, He also perfects His creations with BRAINS and HEARTS so they can think and feel.

Feeling comes from our heart, can be easily manipulated and not stable. 

Logic is based on facts that are stored and processed in our brains.

Brains and hearts are the two most powerful softwares needed to make life's decisions.  Each complements each other, can't work independently, and have to work concurrently. If one of them malfunctions, our hardware (body) will not function normally. 

So.... Let's use both our Brains and Hearts...!!

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

I am STUPID

I met few women in my life who habitually said, "I am Stupid".  So often they said it, eventually they really believed that they were stupid. But knowing them for few years, I know for a fact that they are not stupid.. I know for sure they are not coz I can't stand stupidity.  The fact that I don't run away from them when I see them on the street confirms that they are not stupid.  The fact that I answer their phonecalls and have lunches with them proves that they (and I) are not stupid.
When I asked them why they thought they were stupid, the answers range from "...because I didn't finish high school", "....because I got cheated a lot of times", "because I can't speak English", and the worst of all : "...because my mother said I am stupid."

I pity them so much that I try my best to change the way they think about themselves.  Although I only believe 50% of what's written in "The Secret" book by Rhonda Byrne, I do believe that our actions, our moods, our works, and our happiness are determined by our mind.

I also believe that what mothers tell their children will be ingrained in their minds for a very long time.  I still can't understand mothers who like to say stupid to their children when they come home with bad grades from school.  I notice that Asian mothers do this quite often.

One lady that I met few months back insisted that she is stupid.  She told me that everyone told her she was stupid because she couldn't cook well, she didn't go to college, she didn't know how to put on make up and because she allowed herself to be bullied by her mother-in-law and her maid. 

When I asked her, "So what do you do when people say that you are stupid?". She said, "Nothing, just kept quiet."  I really want to tell her : You really ARE Stupid...!! But of course, I don't want to add salt to the injury.

Instantly I vowed to change and save her.



She thought she was stupid because she couldn't cook.  I've been teaching her to cook, nothing fancy.. just decent food so that her husband and children will not die of food poisoning.  She was surprised that she actually cooked food that her husband and children ate last week.  They even had second serving of the grilled chickens and pasta that she cooked for dinner.  I was in tears when she called me to inform this "miracle".

She thought she was stupid because she didn't go to college.  I've been teaching her that college is just a tool, that we gain knowledge not only from school but from experiences, books, tv, internet, etc.  A lot of smart and rich people do not go to college, yet they make it big in life.  I have to change the way she thinks, slowly...

She thought she was stupid because she didn't know how to put on make up.  She is a very beautiful lady with fair and smooth skin complexion. Coming from an English-Indian father and a Chinese-Irish mother, I can see that she doesn't need make up at all.  But she never thought that she was pretty.... Well, this is what people say about beauty that comes from the inside.  She doesn't have beautiful feeling inside of her.  I taught her to put on just a bit of mascara and foundation. She was just transformed when she looked at the mirror and smiled.  It's not the mascara and foundation that made her beautiful that day, but her smile radiated from her happy heart.

The more I spent time with her, the more I believe that she is not stupid at all. She told me all about her ordeals having colon problems. She did researches on the disease, discussed it with her specialists, changed her lifestyles and got well.  A stupid person can't do this.

This thing reminded me again on how important it is to have self confidence.  Living in Asia, we are called "sombong" (snobs) when we have high self confidence.  But I do believe there is a big difference between a snob and a person with high self confidence.

To be honest, I also grew up without having self confidence at all.  I always told myself I was ugly, fat, stupid, and lazy.  It took me 25 years to know that I was not one of those.  Even now, sometimes the low self esteem creeps back in.  But now I know how to shake it off.



I hope I can teach my children to be confident so they will never say "I am STUPID".  If one day i hear them they say that... I can really faint and join those who like to say I AM STUPID. May God please help me...