I was with my wife at a luncheon last week when we met him. He was a retired government officer with two kids sitting next to him. Although they don’t look alike, still I had no other idea how to start a conversation except asking him:
“Are these your children?”
The way he stared at me, made me feel that I may had offended him. Obviously, we were baffled.
Not only were the kids’ features differed from his, they were also probably too young to be his. Thank God, it was nothing but a stare.
He told me that those were not his children or grandchildren but they were someone else’s kids.
We could only guess, but I’ll tell you the truth later.
NST Report On Mammogram Subsidy
What made me think of him and decide to write this article has got to do with a news report that I read sometime last week or so.
Well, it’s my habit these days picking up old newspaper during the early morning.
I missed a lot of things over the past few weeks due to workload at the office. 😀
A few months back, my uncle died of cancer. It is not the first time someone close to me succumbed to such a frightening disease, or a group of over 100 different and distinctive diseases to be precise.
In Malaysia, it was reported that a total of 18,219 new cancer cases were diagnosed in 2007 and registered at the National Cancer Registry published in 2011.
The number keeps growing I believe and cancer is fast becoming the No. 1 predator in this country.
Cancer Is A Silent Killer
One thing about cancer that we should take note is – it is a silent killer. Normally, many people don’t realize that they have cancer until it is too late to save them.
To make things worse, the causes of most cancers are not known.
Scientists are still learning about things that may put people at higher risk for certain types of cancer. These may include smoking, poor diet, lack of exercise and exposure to certain types of viruses, chemicals and toxins. [Link].
To ensure that it will not be too late for us to fight cancer, we should go for early screening. That’s why the news report by Nuradilla Noorzam really attracted me this morning and I hope after getting RM25 million allocation under the 2013 budget, the mammogram subsidy programme will be up and running asap.
For me, the programme should be lauded as it will definitely benefit not only the women, but also their family. Just imagine the difficulties faced by children losing their parents at a young age.
And there are also other people around them that will be affected too, which will bring us back to the above story.
Listening to him, honestly, I was pretty annoyed at first. I thought he hated the children and tried to blame other people for whatever problem that he was facing.
But, I guess, I was wrong.
He is a guy who throughout his life lived as a “Lone Ranger” with no wife or children to look after.
All of sudden everything changed and he was thoroughly affected by the event no one was able to foresee.
His sister and her daughter both died of ovarian and breast cancer, respectively, in the same year.
They passed away within months of each other, leaving him as guardian to his niece’s sons, whenever their father is not in town, which is most of the week, as he is based across the ocean.
To make it tougher for him, one of the kids is autistic and needs plenty of attention.
The guy never raised a child before and all of sudden he needs to look after not one but two children with one of them requiring very special care and attention.
At the age of 64, I don’t think this is something that he looked forward to. But credit must be given to him – he took the responsibility very well and did not abandon those kids.
He could have passed off the children to one of their uncles or aunties but he didn’t have the heart to do it knowing that they wouldn’t be able to look after them properly.
Towards the end of our meeting, I felt deep sympathy and admiration for him and wish him the very best. Being a father to two special children myself, I know there is an abundant of blessings in disguise when raising these children.
Sooner or later, I know he will feel it too.