Mourning together with my nation

22nd March, Sunday

It was already very late at night. However, I was not able to sleep. Hubby and I was just chatting about Mr Lee. I said a quiet prayer after that, hoping for his health to get better.

23rd March, Monday

It was 6am. I woke up to find an incoming message. Mr Lee has passed on, my colleague informed me. She might not be able to see after the cheerleading girls for the morning practice as she might need to see to special arrangements for morning assembly. I quickly gathered myself and prepared to go to work. Throughout, her words kept ringing in my mind. “Mr Lee has passed on.” My heart grew heavier as I made my way to work.

The rest of the week became rather sombre as the news of Mr Lee’s departure sank in. Most of my colleagues were wearing either black, white or dark colours for the entire week. It was unsaid, but we were all mourning for the loss of our founding father, a great man whom we are blessed to have, to lead us to where we are today.

Every story I read about Mr Lee made me tear. The more I know about what he has went through to fight for us, the more I regret not getting to know him better when he was still alive.

Back at home, the television programmes about Mr Lee and his stories have been running for the whole week. Little man was curious about this great man, and I started introducing him to Mr Lee and his deeds, whatever his little mind could take. I wanted my boy to remember our founding father. I wanted to bring him to down to the Parliament House to pay our respects and show our thanks for all that he has done for us.

27th March, Friday

News about the long queue to pay respect to Mr Lee were all on the Internet. Still, I wanted to go and pay respect to Mr Lee.

I brought little man home, with the intention to go to the Parliament House after dinner. Little man was unusually cranky that evening. By the time we finally settled for dinner, it was rather late. I was worned out and I worried that we were not able to handle a cranky toddler during the long wait at Parliament House. Eventually, I made the decision not to go that evening. Turned out the queue was suspended because of the overwhelming crowd who wanted to get in to pay their last respect to Mr Lee.

From the many reports and updates from the social media, many people were disappointed by the decision. But they understood that it was made for the safety and comfort of those who were already in the queue. I was very touched to know that the majority understood and many still hanged around to wait for the queue to open up again.

28th March, Saturday

I woke up at 4am upon hearing the loud thunderstorm. It may sound ridiculous, but I started to worry about the crowd who was queueing to pay their respects. I prayed and hoped that the rain was not as heavy over at their side.

I woke up again later in the morning and told Hubby that I wanted to go to the Parliament House. We were preparing little man when I suddenly found out several ulcers in his mouth. It might be HMFD as little man’s school is currently going through some episodes of outbreak. We decided to bring him to the pediatrician to get clearance before going to pay our respects. We were relieved to know that those ulcers were non-HMFD related and we took a cab down to the Parliament House immediately.

It was very emotional for me, paying my last respect to Mr Lee. I was really glad I brought little man with me. Seeing him bow and say “thank you” and “I love you” to Mr Lee, made me tear even more. I have so much gratitude in me, I have no idea how to put them to words.

29th March, Sunday

It was the final farewell. I could not hold back my tears when I saw one of the pallbearers sealing the coffin of Mr Lee.

This was it. We have lost a great man, the man we looked forward to see every National Day parade.

We will miss you deeply, Mr Lee.

Thank you for devoting your life to Singapore.

We will do our best to bring this country forward, from where you left us.

We will do you proud.

Rest in peace, Sir.

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