Wednesday, 16 July 2008

We're family!

Here is Isabelle, trying to pose for a picture with Isaac, trying to pull him close. While Isaac, not usually accustomed to friendly behaviour from this particular cheh cheh, is not sure what this cheh cheh is trying to do, and is hence pushing her away.
pictures above taken on 11th May 2008
Isaac @ 9 months plus;
Isabelle @ almost 3 years old

Hahaha... I guess that kinda sums up their relationship right now - Isabelle loves Isaac, yet, inevitably, she is sometimes jealous and feels threatened by him. And over time, Isaac has learnt that he has to be on his guard when this cheh cheh is around, coz he could be shoved over, crushed upon, shouted at, or have his things snatched away from him, at any moment at all.

We've all been trying to teach Isabelle that she should love Isaac as, being cousins, he's almost as good as bring her little brother. In other words, we were trying to teach her the meaning of FAMILY.

I've been trying for some time to do this, by trying to point out to Isabelle and Becca, that their Mama is actually my sister. And their Popo, who is their Mama's mama, is also my mama. Hahaha... yeah, am not very clear, am I? Understandably confusing for the little ones.

So, imagine my surprise last night, when we went back to my parents' place for dinner, and Isabelle started the following conversation with me (known to Isabelle and Becca as "Ee-ee" - auntie): -

Isabelle: "Ee-ee, who is Isaac's mama?"
Me: "Who is Isaac's mama?"
Isabelle: "You!"
Me: "That's right!"

Isabelle: "Ee-ee, who is Isaac's papa?"
Me: "Who is Isaac's papa?"
Isabelle: "Tio Tio!" (Hubbs is Tio Tio - uncle - to Isb & Bec)
Me: "That's right!"

Isabelle: "Ee-ee, who is Isaac's Ee-ee?"
Me: "Who is Isaac's Ee-ee?"
Isabelle: "Mama!" (refering to her own mama, my sister)
Me: "That's right! Very good"

Isabelle: "Ee-ee, who is Isaac's Tio Tio?"
Me: "Who is Isaac's Tio Tio?"
Isabelle: "Papa!" (refering to her own papa, my bro-in-law)
Me: "That's right!"

And so she went on, and Becca joined in too...

Isb & Bec: "Ee-ee, who is Isaac's popo?" (Popo - grandmother)
Me: "Who is Isaac's popo?"
Isb & Bec: "Popo!"
Me: "That's right!"

Isb & Bec: "Ee-ee, who is Isaac's gong gong?" (Gong Gong - grandfather)
Me: "Who is Isaac's gong gong?"
Isb & Bec: "Gong Gong!"
Me: "That's right!"

And so they completed the entire adult population in our immediate family, and I was very impressed, coz I'd been trying to teach them this for weeks now, and I hadn't succeeded much... But apparently, they weren't done yet, and they went on...

Isb & Bec: "Ee-ee, who is Natalie's kor kor?" (kor kor - older brother)
Me: "Huh?" *stunned*
Isb & Bec: "Isaac!!!"
Me: "That's RIGHT!!! Very good!!!"

Isb & Bec: "Ee-ee, who is Isaac's mei mei?" (mei mei - younger sister)
Me: "Who?"
Isb & Bec: "Natalie!!!"
Me: "That's RIGHT!!! Very good!!!"

Isb & Bec: "Ee-ee, who are Isaac's cheh chehs?" (cheh cheh - older sister)
Me: "Who?"
Isb & Bec: "We are Isaac's cheh chehs!!!"
Me: "Yes, that's RIGHT!!! That's absolutely right!!! Very good!!!"

Wah I feel like crying already.

So the girls were so pleased that I was so pleased, that they repeated the above in random order, for a few times. I asked them who taught them so well, was it their Mama, and they said yes. But I could tell they really understood the relationships this time, and they weren't just regurgitating, nor learning by rote. They even knew that I was their Mama's mei mei, and their Mama was my cheh cheh. They really knew.

This is really a major step forward :) for Isabelle especially, so that she can come to accept Isaac as her family member.

And so the education process continues... Having kids is not just breastfeeding and changing diapers - in fact, those only last a short period of time... Education, is the major part... life long process in fact... Thus... we are only just beginning...


  1. Ahhhh ... That is indeed so sweet. When they finally get it. I hope that Isaac learns to let his guard down a little and learn to love his cheh chehs and mei mei too.

    I spoke to Aunt Constance yesterday and she said that Natalie stuck rather close to her mother, but Isaac was worse. I had to laugh because after reading your blog, I did understand where she was coming from, since reading Val's blog at the same time, I realise how "open" Chloe is.

    Anyway, it's good that they are spending time together with each other though the year apart will mean that Isaac would have grown a little apart with them. Still, there is wonderful technology that will allow them to connect some other ways.

    Now, onto how babies are created ... Oops! Wrong blog. Check back 20 years or so later. ;-)

  2. Yeah, it was so sweet of them, I could have burst out singing "We are fa-mi-ly! We are Fa-mi-ly!" to the tune of We are Singapore! hahaha...

    hahahahhaa... yeah Chloe's really open with letting anyone carry her. Natalie takes awhile to realise something is not right, and she doesn't protest as violently as Isaac. Well, Isaac, hahahaha, we usually tell our friends and relatives to "Grab him and run!" :p

  3. Hahahaahaha to the Natalie comment. I wonder what she must be thinking. I just looked at the photos of Chloe's birthday party on Val's blog. They are all so adorable.

    Do you take photos too?


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