My daughter surprised me with her tenacious spirit this morning, one of many similarly wonderful out-of-the-blue occasions.
Still recovering from a nasty flu, she was coughing rather badly all through the 30-minutes drive from the house to her school in Shah Alam. I said nothing during this except to pass her a plastic bag in case she felt like vomiting.
It’s the kind of dry, throaty cough that I know to be both unpleasant and painful so in between overtaking slow cruising lorries and cars on the NKVE, I made up my mind to send her for another medical check-up, get an MC and let her rest the day out.
And if need be, take an off day myself to babysit.
As any other school-ferrying would vouch, reaching the school is the breezier phase of the whole routine with having to navigate crisscrossing kids, kids and parents, late-arriving teachers and haphazardly parked cars and MPVs being the other - more curse-prone moments - half.
I spied a small space in between two parked cars, slotted mine, switched off the engine, turned around and asked if she was okay, half expecting a “Not so” reply.
She said she was fine.
I checked my hearing: “Are you sure you’re able to attend class today?”
“I’m okay,” she said starting to sling her school bag across.
“Okay... Don’t forget to tell your teacher if you feel bad. Get her to call me. Can you do that?”
Father and daughter then trotted their way to the school gates as the school bell started clanging for the children to converge to the grounds for their Monday morning assembly.
She might not have realized it but holding her small hands then was a father filled with silent pride.
I bade goodbye and watched her joined her schoolmates in a frenzy of swift walks through covered walkways and endless chitter chatter, twice turning to see me standing near the guards' post.
And feeling truly blessed.