Noodle Chia takes our foreign friends on his special, ahem, Night Tour! And today is the last day to win daily giveaways from our sponsors this week, Advanced Medical Optics, makers of Complete MoisturePLUS and Blink Eyedrops. Listen to today's podcast at mrbrownshow.com and win AMO hampers!
Welcome to our wonderful city of festivals! Once again, we've got daily giveaways from our sponsors this week, Advanced Medical Optics, makers of Complete MoisturePLUS and Blink Eyedrops. Listen to today's podcast at mrbrownshow.com and win AMO hampers!
Find out how to win invites to Stacie Orrico's showcase at Zouk this Friday, contest details at mrbrownshow.com! Quick go!
Thanks again Ginny for the very encouraging letter.
I am the "Sandra" Ginny was addressing to. Thanks MLR for the sharing :) There is a lot that my husband and I have to learn to journey on. My son was only diagnosed 2 mths ago, being very new to this, we are really overwhelmed and sometimes feel quite helpless.
But I'm very touched by the no of new friends that I've met, be it in cyberspace or the real world, they have been most generous with their help, care and concern. I know God will provide us with the strength and courage to bring out the best in our children!
"Sandra" (mr brown: that's a nice name that u have given me :))
A few days ago, a reader sent me an email to ask if my wife could send a word of encouragement to his friend, "Sandra", a mother whose son was diagnosed with autism. She had been struggling with her son's tantrums and behavioural issues, and even neighbours who complain about the racket her son makes late at night when he runs and jumps around the house due to sensory problems.
He wrote, "It breaks my heart to see my good friend going through this... She is... feeling really bad now that she could not help her own son... She thinks she is a horrible mother."
"Sandra" is very blessed to have a friend like him who cares so much.
With the wife's permission, I am reproducing her letter to "Sandra", whose name has been changed for obvious reasons. I wanted Ginny's words to be an encouragement to others too, and my wife kindly agreed to let me publish this here.
P.S. Ginny would also like me to publicly thank all you readers who gave her words of encouragement at her "I am Singaporean" podcast. She was very touched by those gestures.
How are you? I hope you are feeling calm at this moment. If you have read the source of this mail, you will know that your friend, [name deleted], has been so kind as to have ask me to share with you my own experience as a mother of an autistic child. I wanted to show you that despite all the grief you are feeling, you are very fortunate to have a good friend who is willing to feel the pain you are feeling and is desperate to help you. I am not as eloquent as my husband, mrbrown. But I will try my best to share with you the encouragement I have received myself.
I am also learning. Even now, I still grieve from time to time. When I read how you are feeling, my heart felt very heavy because I knew exactly how you are feeling. I remembered crying my heart out when the doctor confirmed that Faith has ASD. Although the period prior to seeing the doctor for evaluation, we had hoped that the doctor would say otherwise. You see, Faith was my firstborn and she was a world to me. (and is still! : )) I had so much hopes and dreams for her when I was pregnant with her. I had imagined myself as a modern mummy who will listen to her growing up woes. Little did I know that there is more to this than that. I was so overwhelmed. In fact I felt suffocated. I cried out of desperation, out of fear and most of all, out of sadness for Faith. I know the path will not be easy for her. I am weak too, I told God. I can't do this alone.
I slipped into anger and depression most of the time. I blamed everyone, myself especially. In the initial stage, I was often lost. I did not know how to deal with Faith at all. You said your son laughed uncontrollably even when you disciplined him. I had that experience too. I had even laid hands on her at one stage. But I regretted almost immediately because I know Faith did not know how to modulate. She was probably feeling all kinds of emotions but she has no outlet to vent and she does not know how to handle an emotion. The only way she could tell us is through all these sensory seeking behaviour. We need to and we have to be more tolerant. I learned not to try too hard. Often we try so hard to make our kid learn, we get so worked up when she just did not get it. I learned to let go. We will try, but don't get despair when it does not work out because it may not be time yet. We need to allow ourselves time to see the progress. I am sure your son will and as you have mentioned, get better and better.
Yes, you are right. Instead of moping in misery, we should use our remaining strength to help our kids. But do remember, we need to grieve too. We need to talk to friends and seek help when we cannot shoulder this burden. It will do you a lot of good and it will help us do a lot of good for our kids in return. I am fortunate to have a supportive husband. I am also fortunate to have the support of my own parents and my in-laws. They have helped us in many ways than we can imagine and till this day, I still wonder if I would have made it if not for all these support. I hope you will continue to share your burden, in a constructive way. I have moments when I just 'lose' it. I take some moment out when it gets this way and then my husband would step in. Likewise when my husband gets 'worned' out, I would step in. We must share this burden. It is not healthy to coup up feelings and unhappiness ourselves. We got to work like a unit. In a way, there is a tighter bond in our family as a result of Faith's condition. This is rather ironic.
I have this lady friend in church who has 2 autistic children out of 3. Her strength in dealing this amazes me. I remembered when I was pregnant with my 3rd and felt suddenly fearful that she might be autistic as well, you know what was her reply, "then you thank God for the double blessing!" Huh, what was that all about? It's then I realised we should see beauty in all things, perfect or imperfect. Faith is beautifully made and through her, I see the world outside myself. The children of this lady friend turn out to be well at the end of the day. I could not even tell that the kids were autistic. They were so 'normal' in their behavour!
The most important thing I have learned is: ACCEPTANCE. Most often, parents of autistic kids become depressed because of denial. By accepting, it does not mean that we give up hope. We accept because Autism is part or our kid and we need to accept it before we can understand how to help our kid. I always tell myself I need to accept the fact that Faith will be dependent on me for quite a while. I need to accept that Faith may never recover but it is only fulfilling if we help her live life to the fullest in her own capacity. I used to be so unhappy for Faith but I thought, maybe Faith is happy because she knows she still has us. She knows she is loved and that is enough for me: to let Faith be happy.
There will of course be more bumpy roads down our journey. But as long as we are clear on this, we should be able to brave through the storms. We will get better and stronger, just as our kids get stronger and better each day.
I am not very good in giving advice. I am only glad I have the opportunity to tell you how I feel and I hope we will be able to sail through this journey smoothly, together.
Imran Johri tells us more about life in Malaysia. This is part 2 of 2. And we've got daily giveaways from our sponsors this week, Advanced Medical Optics, makers of Complete MoisturePLUS and Blink Eyedrops. Listen to the podcast at mrbrownshow.com and win AMO hampers!
We chatted with the witty and very funny Imran Johri. This is part 1 of 2. And we're still doing daily giveaways from our sponsors this week, Advanced Medical Optics, makers of Complete MoisturePLUS and Blink Eyedrops. Listen to the podcast at mrbrownshow.com and win AMO hampers!
Singapore got goodie bag for IMF delegates, mrbrown show got goodie bag for you listeners too, daily giveaways from our sponsors this week, Advanced Medical Optics, makers of Complete MoisturePLUS and Blink Eyedrops. Listen to the podcast at mrbrownshow.com and win stuff!
We had been trying wean Faith off the hand signal she uses to indicate she wants something. In the last few weeks, she started expensive weekly speech therapy sessions ($150 a pop) and among other activities, we did mouth exercises with her to make her more aware of her mouth, lips, tongue and teeth.
If you are not a parent of an autistic child, it would be hard to understand the thrill of seeing your child chew a gummy Ricola blackcurrent sweet with her back teeth for the first time, instead of letting it sit inside her mouth till it gets soft enough to swallow. That knowledge of chewing is an essential precursor to speech.
We let her have a few more dried tomato snacks, to reward her for vocalising her "I want".
Even Isaac, her younger brother (23 months and can't shut up) saw all this and declared, "Papa! Cheh cheh talk!"
Yes son, you noticed too, I see. It's a small start but indeed, 姐姐 talk.
Update: Looks like the sites are back up. Once again, we apologise for the downtime.
Sooo sorry, but mrbrownshow.com and wtfshow.com are currently down due to problems at our host, Dreamhost.com. No lah, we've not been hacked.
The status of Dreamhost's servers can be seen here.
Given our less-than-satisfying experience with Dreamhost thus far, we will probably be looking for a new host, preferably one that does not suck.
"God. Mr B, please do something about this. It's getting way out of hand." -Reader Rik
Of late, there has been a spate of spam, trolls and flamewars happening on my site. I welcome robust debate, feedback and criticism, but when it descends into off-topic content, name-calling, mudslinging, and even racist taunts, I have to step in.
This is not a public forum. This is my site. If you want to flame, or pretend to be someone else to post the same rant multiple times, or post as some lame-assed "brotherhood" (who are all the same person) talking to each other, get your own blog or set up your own forum. You can talk to yourself all day long there.
Troll or post racist crap here, and your comment will be unpublished and your IP banned.
I will leave comments open for now, but they will be moderated. This means that that when you post a comment, it goes into a holding area for me to approve. So if your comment does not show up immediately, do not fret. I assure you I will be very liberal in approving comments, but I will not tolerate spam, personal attacks, gratuitous profanity and racist attacks.
I am sorry I have to do this but I really do not have the time or energy to manage this kind of thing, especially if it makes the site unpleasant for other readers. Maybe staying up to 2am every night producing shows is making me cranky but I've had enough of this negativity.
Thanks for your understanding.
I think technology is so advanced these days, they can squeeze storage into such a thin wire.
Bugger Miyagi, make fun of me somemore. I had to dig very hard to find a shirt for that suit, ok? All my old shirts are too big now, and all I wear to work these days are t-shirts and jeans. So it was a big sacrifice to go formal for his wedding do, ok? Hahaha!
I think I was writing my honour-the-bride-and-groom speech at this point.
When he gets the time, Miyagi promises to share his Japanese outfit shots.
(The rest of this small Flickr set here.)
Update: Sorry, I left comments open by mistake here. Please leave comments for podcasts at the mrbrownshow site so that everyone can read them in one place. Thanks.
Our tribute to the late Steve Irwin, Crocodile Hunter. Join him on the hunt at mrbrownshow.com.
A Japanese 1980s TV commercial for the Isuzu Gemini, note that no computer graphics were used for the dance sequences.
Gotta love the Ah Beng music too.
We were in the office just now, trading army stories.
Miyagi: "Wah this list of annoying things to do to tick people off damn funny can?"
Our friend Stephen: "You know what we used to do in the Army? Cellophane over the toilet bowl. The first thing in the morning, you usually rush to the loo to take your dump without checking...
And in my other camp, the toilet bowls were black, so we used to kiwi the rims..."