However, given the circumstances that it's a mixed marriage, it's only fair to let them choose later. Even though it's my responsibility as a Catholic parent to do all I could to guide them closer to God, the final call is still not within my control. I trust that God will take care of everything for me, and a broken marriage would be the last on His list. So, there's really no point arguing over whose side the kids should take, because a happy family is all that matters. Furthermore, all religion teach us to be good.
Now, as we journey in faith together, I wouldn't deny that it's not easy to juggle with so many differences, especially when it's not just about the two of us, but when two families are involved. We'll have to give and take most of the time. Indeed, if things were not handled wisely, but rather too clouded by emotion, the one that suffers most would be the children.
Actually I brought this up because I wanted to record down some funny or touching moments that we had, especially when you see it from a child's perspective. Some may or may not be of direct relevant, but it's still good to lump them here.
SY tends to jump sides very easily. One day, she would tell me that when she grows up, she wants to be a Christian like me, and ask SJ to follow Daddy. But when she's talking to Daddy, she can switch very fast, and say the reverse thing. So when both of us are around, she would hesitate and say, "Erm, how ler... I want to follow Mommy and also Daddy". So we'll tell them it's ok, she didn't need to choose now yet. My, she felt so relieved!
Every morning when we drop them at school, there's this guy who would stand in front of the school compound and greet them with "Good Morning, Amitabha". And they were asked to put their hands together and bowed slightly while saying that. So they will call that man Amitable Uncle. It's funny to hear them say among themselves, "Let's see if the Amitable Uncle is here or not".
They learnt how to say their graces before meals after attending school. Sometimes, they practise this at home as well. Of course, we're all 'forced' to say it together with them. I had to explain to SY that I can't say this, as I'm a Christian (They say thank you to Buddha, Thank you to the priest, etc..). I explained to her that I would say thank you to Jesus instead of to Buddha. And when she said Amitable to me, I replied with Amen to her. She showed me a level of understanding that I suddenly realised she has grown up. For instance, she would know that I can't do certain things so she'll add, "It's ok, Mommy can be excused. That's because she prays to Jesus".
We're attending Mass in church. All the congregation stood up for the entrance hymn. Then suddenly, I saw SY whispered something into hubby's ear, so he sat down again. Apparently, SY told him only Christian can stand up, Buddhists have to sit down. We can't help laughing but I told hubby to stand back up as a sign of respect.
Well, I still do my part the best I could. I would bring them to church, even if it means going alone with 2 kids, unless I wanted to have some quiet time alone, then I'll leave them at home. One day, I took them to the new church because I've missed the Mass at the church that I regularly go to, as this new church has Mass on a Sunday evening. Since it's my first time there (or was it 2nd? the first time I reached there by accident!), I lost my way, so both girls were busy helping me find the direction (as if they knew!). SJ has not had her afternoon nap, so she was dozing off. However, every time I pointed out that "Oh dear, SJ has slept", she would replied me with "No lar, I'm helping Mommy to find the way". And not long later, I saw her nodding off again. This could repeat for a few more times, until I finally found the place.
I bought a little Bible for kids during Christmas last year. Ever since then, it has become their bedtime story. They will request me to read a few stories for them every night, SY would ask for 2, and SJ would choose another 2. In fact, SY could read them all on her own now, and she even read to SJ when I'm busy.
Isn't it amazing to hear such words from a girl who's not even 6 yet? I couldn't imagine what to expect a few more years down the road... but it's surely something to be praised!