Memorable and amusing moments.
1. When my sister was little people often mistook me for a young mum. Now, we’re about the same age, apparently.
“Are you studying medicine too?”
“What course are you studying then?”
“Umm, primary school?” Is that a course, she wonders.
I get it that it can be hard to tell – Asians often look young and ageless. But the guy asking was Asian as well.
Around the same time last year restaurants also started to ask us whether we wanted to “pay together, or separate?” I’m always tempted to say separate, quite innocently, and leave her to settle her own bill. Just kidding.
2. After one such meal, I was waiting for the credit card payment to process – both palms pressed down on the counter, leaning forward on tippy toes, possibly staring absent-mindedly into the distance.
“Stand like a lady! Girls stand like this,” she imitates me, “and ladies stand like this.” She demonstrates, standing tall, all prim and proper.
3. Speaking of instructions, before going on holidays with dad, she had some specific ones for me.
“Don’t go out with your friends too often. And you have to be nice to mum.”
“Okay, but I get annoyed easily.”
“Yeah, don’t. You have to be patient.”
“How do you do it? You seem to be very good at it.” It’s true.
“I know, it’s hard,” she replied sympathetically, “sometimes I’m impatient too. I don’t know how. I’m just telling you to do it.”
4. We often say that she sees clearly when it comes to others (in many things beyond her age), but it’s hard to do the same when it comes to herself. If we are honest, that’s all of us, really.
“I don’t know if I will go to heaven.”
“Sometimes I want to be good, but I can’t! I don’t know why,” she lamented.
We talked about relying on grace rather than works again.
“You sounds like Paul, let me read it to you. ‘“For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate… Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!'” (We read the whole section, but this is from Romans 7:15, 24-25.)
“Oh yeah, that does sounds like me! Where’s that from? Which chapter?” A few weeks later she told mum about how she struggles like Paul and showed her the passage. Surprising what kids will understand and remember.
5. We came to the bizarre story on the witch of Endor (1 Samuel 28) and the topic of spirits, demon-possessions and such things. Nothing new. She and her friends have heard all about Ouija boards on YouTube.
“So wait, wait.” Thinking hard. “If you can see that people are demon possessed, how come you can’t see it when they have the Holy Spirit?” What a searching question for all Christians to consider.
6. I didn’t have time to get changed after work one evening. At dinner, she looked at my flowy top, skirt, make-up, necklace.
“You know, you look all strong with muscles in your gym clothes.” But when you wear this you look all…” She paused, frowned and pursed her lips. All weak? She hates dresses and girly things.
“When you wear this, you look all beautiful!” She continued warmly with an unexpected hug.