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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Give thanks with a grateful heart

Appreciate the good and bad in your life and be optimistic about the future

WITH two days left for this year, it is time to reflect and make fresh resolutions for 2016.

I have learnt to give thanks for all things – good or bad – that came my way.

But why be thankful even for the bad?

Truth be told, it took me a long time to be willing to accept misfortune and longer still to give thanks for them.

Now I appreciate there are far too many factors that I cannot control despite my best efforts.

So I just learn from the sad experiences to avoid repeating them and hold on to the hope that something good will come out of them later.

2015 has been a victorious year for me with more blessings than woes.

With a grateful heart, I choose to remember the former with rejoicing and overlook or forget the latter.

Wonderful blessings

Firstly, I am thankful that everyone in my family is in good health.

My biggest blessing is my baby, Cat.

My life has completely changed since her arrival in mid-year and everything I do now revolves around this little bundle of joy.

Healthy, joyful and growing well, she sits, crawls and listens whenever we speak to her.

On her second swimming class, she was submerged briefly in water and has been doing this with ease ever since.

In a couple of months she will start her nursery and music appreciation classes.

Meanwhile, she is learning to recognise words being pronounced and images with the aid of picture cards.

Being an inexperienced mother, the help and support from my husband, his parents and my parents has been invaluable.

My mother is a great help in tending to baby Cat and teaching me many valuable lessons about caring for my baby.

Everyone knows how difficult it is to hire a maid these days.

The timely arrival of our maid who is well-mannered and an experienced mother to take care of the many household chores lifted a heavy load of me.

It spite of the current weak economy, our architectural firm has been successful in securing several commercial and residential projects in addition to our appointment to design automotive facilities throughout the Asia-Pacific region for an upmarket marque.

We are continuously developing talented architects and designers while fostering in them a passion and enthusiasm for their work.

My 95-year old grandmother fell very ill in September but has since recovered almost fully.

She has good health except for occasional bouts of sleeplessness for a couple of days after which she will be groggy for two or three days and regale us with funny tales.

I am thankful to have clean air to breathe for the next few months before the haze sets in again, and that our economy is not too bad and personal safety here is much better than most other countries.

Looking forward

Our family has a saying that “next year will be a better year”.

Thankfully, it has been so all these years.

I eagerly await the time when baby Cat begins to talk and walk.

I am certain my heart will melt at the sweet sound of her voice when she calls me “mummy” and the sight of her staggering towards me for a hug.

After several months’ hiatus, I am getting ready to return to work which I miss very much.

Meantime, I have to trim off at least 6kg to get back in shape.

With determination, it will take three to four months.

I am yearning for the opening of our new automotive facility which specialises in the restoration and maintenance of classic and exotic cars.

Renovation work on the premises is in their final stages and business should commence in the first quarter of 2016.

Everything seems bright

Ever since my father told me about the downfall of his arrogant business principal, I have always reminded myself to be more careful when everything seems bright.

After a conference in a five-star hotel in Madrid, he asked the latter why he was wearing dark sunglasses in the coffee house.

Puffing a cigar, the principal replied that his future was too bright.

He lost his job soon after and his fortune has dwindled further ever since.

While I receive blessings, I remember there are many poverty-stricken people.

I shall rekindle my passion for charity and do my part for orphans and old folks.

We cannot do much about the burning national issues but I hope that they will be settled expeditiously so that the government can begin to organise itself to take care of wage-earners who are hard-pressed due to the rising cost of living.

On balance, I am optimistic about the future because the scriptures teaches me to always have hope and that the righteousness of God will bring peace and joy to anyone who puts it into practice.

May you be blessed with peace, joy, love, excellent health and prosperity in 2016 and beyond.

By Chermaine Poo Slice of life

Chermaine Poo is a chartered accountant turned actress, TV host, emcee and columnist. Follow her on,, and Poo or drop her an email at

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