Ode to my parents

As I sit in my Grab, looking out the window into the 5pm Friday rush hour, exhaustion overcomes me. A half day of work in the morning and the other half at a job interview, halfway across town. It’s frustrating, the hunt for a job, and the gut feeling of being let down for reasons out of your hand (specifically being a foreigner, out of your home country).

But, my mind isn’t too pressed on that in this moment. My mind wanders to my parents, somehow. Perhaps it’s the month of Ramadan which has me wishing I were sitting down for Iftaar (breaking fast) with them. It had always been like that for the better part of my life – apart from this year.

Or perhaps it’s the confidence I feel in myself, because of them. Looking back, it’s difficult to picture myself looking any different. I’m dressed in formal clothing, heels pinching at my toes, my hair donning a fresh cut, resume on my lap and my handbag next to me. Just two years ago, I would’ve been unable to picture myself in this position. Not just with my dressing, but where I am, the journey I’m currently on.

By ‘journey’ I don’t quite mean of the philosophical kind – it’s more of the literal. In a Grab, on the way back home from a job interview, after having taken a half day off from my actual workplace to attend the interview.

That I’m capable of all of this, and that I’m actually doing it.

It’s all because of my parents, really. All credit goes to them. Yes, I’ve contributed my part in it too. But I wouldn’t have had the capability of even contributing if not for my parents, would I have?

I don’t just mean the expense of putting me through my primary, secondary and higher education though; it’s their upbringing.

My drive, my dedication and motivation – none of it has made itself present over the period of a year or even a handful of years. It’s the culmination of the years your parents spent nurturing you (and continue to) from birth up until this day. And, if your parents are like mine, refuse to stop anytime soon (which is exactly why I love them, in any case).

Despite everything I’ve ever been bitter about – being unable to spend a year abroad so my younger brothers could, for example – at the end of the day, I’m aware that my parents did, and continue to, always do the best for me.

I have so many examples right in front of me which pushes me to be ever more grateful for my parents. So many different pathways I could have taken, and yet I landed up on this one: the right one, the best one. Because of them.

The values, the direction, the worldly significance they instil in you, and how they instil it in you is what makes you the version of yourself you are.

Even if things might not be looking up, it is the very state I am in right now, and the person I am and what I have achieved so far because of them that gives me faith…and brings a smile to my face when there should be a scowl.


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