So we’re packing for the trip that nobody wants to make. The clothes – mainly blacks and whites – are hastily yet ponderously folded; the house has an air of purpose and helplessness all at once. We know where we’re going tomorrow, but we’ve never really been there before – not like this, at least.

Tomorrow the drive will be different from all the other drives we’ve taken. Usually that 4-hour (3-and-a-half, if my dad is at his speedy best) drive has a celebration waiting at the end of it – Chinese New Year, a birthday, or just a rare reunion. Tomorrow, I’m sure it will sink in that Chinese New Years and reunions will never be the same.

公公, I wish we were there to say bye, to be with you when you were lying in hospital getting thinner by the day, and I wish when I last saw you, I talked to you a bit more and gave you one more hug.

I’m thankful for the generous, thoughtful and resilient way you have always taken care of and loved this family, for how although you never said “I love you”, you showed it in so many other ways. I hope you knew that we loved you too.

I will miss the wide grin you had whenever we drove into your driveway all the way from Singapore. I will miss the one-of-a-kind soup you make for us every reunion dinner. I will miss your excellent appetite and your love for food. I will miss you replying everything with “Good, good!” or “Okay!” because you couldn’t really hear what we were saying. I will miss those short chats with you, in the occasional times you could hear us. I will miss you.

But for all the many, countless things I’m grateful to you for, most importantly I’m so glad you not only put your faith in Christ, but led your whole family to know Him too – that, I think, is the greatest gift and legacy anyone can leave. So while we are extremely sad, I’m glad that one day I will see you again. Please introduce me to 婆婆 when I do!

So we will drive until our journeys end – until then.


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