WHEN was the last time you paused before making a decision and gave thought to how your children would view it and acted upon it? Would your decision and action be different?

I started looking through the eyes of children back in 2007 when I helped set up the Children’s Wish Society of Malaysia, a national charity dedicated to fulfilling wishes of ailing children across the country. Back then, we didn’t have a clue as we had edged our lives in stone as adults and never once looked at how our children would see things in their own perspective.

Having fulfilled close to 1300 wishes from across the country since then and also given the chance to meet most of the recipients has changed my perspective in life.  I have learned that life-changing decisions need not be complicated and brain wrecking. Every child we have met has only one objective – to be happy. Even in their darkest hour fighting the illness that has inflicted them, every child merely wants a ray of light in their lives; just to have a reason to smile and enjoy the moment.

Many have asked me how members of CWS Malaysia handle the emotional strain of seeing an ailing child in pain and suffering; and yet still make the day for them by fulfilling their wishes. I have taken this mission on from the start as a life-long commitment to help bring a smile back to children who need it most. A smile is a gift of life.

In this edition, you will read about the society’s recent wish fulfillment. I would like to mention Arianna who had wished for a visit to Resorts World Genting’s Skyworld. Straight off the phone with the doctor who was handling her case, we knew her time was short. We rushed to make contact with friends who are associated with Resorts World Genting and with the hands that extended to assist, we had a date for Arianna and her family to make a 3D/2N trip. We joined her on the second day for the visit and we could see the joy she had when she took to the rides at the themepark. The red carpet was rolled out for her and we knew that she was happy. Her father kept saying Thank You to us. A week later, we received the sad news that Arianna had passed on.

The news was a tear jerker no doubt but we knew that we had done our best to fulfill her wish and what was most important is, she was happy. Arianna celebrated her life up at the themepark and this was the most important thing to us. (Check out the work at CWS Malaysia: https://www.facebook.com/CWSMalaysia)

Over the years, I have realised that life can be simpler and more meaningful if we took greed out of the equation in the things that we see and in the decisions we make thereon. Our children have a lot to teach us in how we behave as adults. After all, we are but only borrowing this planet from our children and one day, we will pass it to them to manage.

Having stayed back during the Chinese New Year holidays instead of joining the balik kampung exodus gave me a lot of time to think about what life means to me. The Covid-19 pandemic that has turned our lives upside down over the last two years has no doubt changed a lot in what we do today. Although we now have a semblance of our pre-Covid-19 lives back, it is timely for us to discard old habits and ways; and to embrace a new normal from now.

Old clothes which are tattered and torn have to be discarded to make way for new attires. Perhaps a short break from work and norms will be a good breath of fresh air for us. Ask your children what they want to do; and maybe just go along with them. You might be surprised at how much fun you will have with them taking the lead.

In a blink of an eye, we have now stepped into the last month in the first quarter of 2022. What lies ahead? No one knows for sure. Look through the eyes of your children (or grandchildren) and take a peek at what they see coming for the rest of this year.

Have a safe month ahead everyone. Stay Safe wherever you are and remember to observe your SOPs.