My mum was a simple person. I was very tired when I was thinking what to say or write for the eulogy. So on behalf of my sister Susan and brother Henry, I will just use her name, or rather the three initials of her name for the eulogy. My mum’s name was Tang Mei Siong. So here goes: TMS
T: Tang: My mum was a Teacher. Not by profession but she was a great teacher. Her profession was a police constable. One of the biggest lessons she taught us or at least me is the concept of time; hers was the rhythm of timeliness whereas mine is one of the modern rhythms. For her everything remained the same, the same furniture, the same clothing, the same position of everything in the house for the last fifty years. Her schedules, her patterns, her food remained the same. Her beliefs, her knowledge seemed to be childlike and simple and sometimes overly straightforward. Mine is one of multitasking, one of hurried life, one of doing several things and several tasks at the same time. Even as I was doing this eulogy, I was thinking about a thousand other things. Living in the present and living in the now seems to be a paradox and yet it is the biggest lesson of all time. As I was reflecting on her teaching, I chanced upon a quotation from Brian Andreas and I paraphrase
“Everything changed the day I figure out there was exactly enough time to do the important things in our lives”
M: Mei ; this means ‘beautiful’ in Mandarin and my mum was a very beautiful woman even by today’s standards; she was a mini-celebrity during her time. Her Chinese name means ‘always beautiful’. I thank God always for her good genes for me to look youthful.
S: Siong : my mum was a very self-reliant and self-sufficient woman ; perhaps as a police constable in the 60s and 70s, she really had to be more ‘garang’ like Fr Andrew Wong said in his homily. She was someone who did not want to trouble anyone. Even when my father passed away a year ago, she didn’t want to contact her siblings for fear of troubling them.
On the eve of this Mothers’ Day, I would like to end off by saying Happy Mothers’ Day to all the mothers here and I am sure my mother will be celebrating Mothers’ Day with our Heavenly Mother Mary and our Lord Jesus. And of course, to be finally reunited with her husband, my dad.
Here is a poem by Chantelle Fox that was sent to me during this mourning period that is appropriate to share during this occasion.
Heaven Needed Mom
So many things of mom I miss
Her gentle hug and tender kiss
I still can feel her warm embrace
And yet picture her loving face.
A mother’s task is never done
and Heaven must have needed one
for angels came and took her hand
and led her to GOD’S promised land
She’s surely kept quite busy there
brushing little angels’ hair.
Although there is sadness, this I know – –
She’s waiting there, her face aglow
I close my eyes and I can see – –
her arms still open wide for me