This post was originally written at the End of May for publication on a Christian site.
I didn’t come from a picture-perfect family. In fact, I come from your average middle-class family. In our family, we have our usual bickering and arguments. My parents are not in the best of relationships. The stresses between their relationship has strained the relationships between my siblings. So yes, when the circuit breaker kicked in and we are called to “work from home”, the struggle to cope with the imminent need to spend an inordinate amount of time with my annoying family members set in.
Truth is, my mum and I have been praying for a miracle. After trying a-million-and-one things like organising family gathering, photo shoots, and other activities, we figure, there is absolutely nothing we can do to bring the family together. Only God can help us now. We were half-hearted, on the verge of giving up. But when the circuit breaker kicked in, we decided to brave the storm and start doing what we can do. My mum made it a point to cook every dinner during the circuit breaker. For lunch, she will work a schedule with my dad to determine who’s to buy food and the like. Yes, there are still arguments, but the “rocks” require some grinding to smoothen out rough edges. I, on the other hand, tried to grab every opportunity I have to draw closer to my parents.
By God’s grace, my dad is beginning to open himself up to the family. Over the course of the circuit breaker, my dad has learned to binge-watch Netflix with me, learned to express himself through a blog, started taking the initiative to care for the plants that I’ve planted, and started sharing with the family (well, me, at least), the things that he cared about.
My mum? She’s beginning to open up on her struggles with dad and how much she’s praying that God would change my dad’s heart so that he may take up more initiative to provide for the family. Thanks be to God, I have the opportunity to watch some Christian films with both of them, reflecting on what lessons we can learn from these films as a family and the things we can do to improve our familial relationship.
Truth is, the circuit breaker has given us the opportunity to grow closer as a family. Yes, the restrictions of circuit breaker meant that there are things we cannot do even as a family. Yes, the rough edges within the family still isn’t completely smoothen out. Yes, old habits still remain and it’s a pain in the a** to put up with them. But whatever bad the circuit breaker did, it gave us the opportunity to bond through activities we never thought was possible. Even though we attend different churches, because of the circuit breaker, we begin this routine of gathering on the couch watching online streams of Sunday services together. As a family, we begin looking out for each other and have meals together. Because of the circuit breakers, we have successfully taught my grandma and my extended family how to use ZOOM so that we can communicate with each other regardless of the restrictions. Because of the circuit breaker, God had opened my eyes to the potential growth my family is capable of achieving if we rest in Him.
As Singapore marches out of the circuit breaker and into the first phase of the reopening, it is my prayer that the habits and routines that my family has started during the circuit breaker remain. By God’s grace, God had used the circuit breaker to groom my family. No doubt, the circuit breaker is quite a tough lesson for us, but I thank God for it.Follow my blog with Bloglovin