A great day ended on a disappointing note
In August, you, my eldest, turned nine. It is amazing how quickly time has passed. You are growing up to be a fine person. You are persistent, stubborn, happy, thoughtful, emotional, intelligent, athletic; more of a leader than I ever was at that age. You are courageous. You are my son.
Morning of your birthday. You . . .
By attending to our messy feelings, we found room for empathy
This essay originally appeared in The Globe and Mail on June 15, 2016.
I had never let my children see me cry before. I had this tough-guy notion it would make me look weak. But one morning, messy emotion got the best of me.
My eldest son was not feeling well. Although ill, he was looking forward to spending a day . . .
Little brother wants to be a big brother
"Fuzzy," S asked, "do you have any gē-gē's or dì-dì's?"
"I don't know," Fuzzy Bunny answered. "What's a gē-gē and a dì-dì?"
"A gē-gē," S said, "is how you say big brother in Mandarin. A dì-dì is how you say little brother."
"Oh!" Fuzzy said. "Well I have one gē-gē and one . . .
My son and I contemplate life as we stare at the ceiling
Bedtime with our children used to be heavy on stories. As they get older, our rituals inevitably change. They still like it when we read to them, but it’s not a big deal if we skip it. Eldest often prefers a chat instead. He sometimes shares more about his day, when turning in for the night.
We have a good chat one evening, . . .
Classmates made fun of his seaweed sandwich
"Dad," youngest said quietly at the dinner table, "some people made fun of my food today."
All the memories came flooding back. I told him when I was a kid, sometimes A-Ma packed cold chicken legs in my lunchbox. Although I loved chicken, I felt different from those with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (back then it was okay to . . .
In dealing with depression, I have become a better, stronger person
Photo: Freeimages.com – Elliot Jordan
Teaching grade school and parenting are very similar. Both involve educating children, and both require great patience. My first foray into teaching wasn’t successful, but it helped me become a stronger person and prepared me for eventual parenthood.
In May, 2000, I . . .