Inner Child

I woke up this morning to see babyboo holding a stick and instructing ‘飞’ (‘fly’ in Mandarin) while waving the tag around at the balcony. He is watching a babybird learn to fly! Tweettweettweettweet, not sure if it is excited or scared. Such chirpy notes.

It is amusing to watch Oliver’s impatience, or excitement, waiting for the hummingbird to lift. It is also hard to grasp if he is cheering birdie on or threatening it – that stick is a cane my mom use on him when he misbehaves.

The mother bird came and they flew off together. My balcony is a forest in the clouds. Standing at 18th floor, it is surprisingly an ideal nursery for hummingbirds and butterflies. Lucky baby got to witness metamorphoses and learning to count though that. From caterpillars to butterflies, watching them emerge over days, and then fly off leaving their empty homes/shells/blankets behind.

Inner Child was a recurring theme when I first moved back from Shanghai. Lynda reminded me to go play with children, so did Evlyn ‘the children are happy when you follow your path’. My work had been with children for a long time, from orphanages to impoverished ones to refugees. I had always taken the perspective of fulfilling material needs, and at most education if we want to stretch the topic a little and talk about the non-material. I was hovering at the edge of working with abused children, but did not, cos I felt I was emotionally unable to deal with it then. And I am glad I did not. It would not have been a responsible move – both for the emotional development of the children and the mental stability of myself.

Everything has its time. Now I understand a little deeper. Love and emotions are facets that we need to take care of as well. So many things we sweep under the carpet, or we are at such a privileged position it would not even have occurred to us. And now I recall how the dragons’ leaders had to check on the kids’ emotional statuses every morning. They are not crazy, they are not paranoid. They just see enough to know that however tedious or seemingly unnecessary, it is something that needs to be done.

I read about suicide rates of refugees yesterday (Mae La camp is our neighbour, by the way). An article that I would not even have paid any attention to, prior. It takes an incident to open up our eyes.

Heal ourselves first. Only then, we know truly how best to reach out to others.


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