It's a typical Sunday morning. I scan the Sunday papers quickly while sipping my coffee. Rusty is at my feet, waiting for me to pop small pieces of bread into his mouth. I tend to spoil him like that.
Then I'll cook noodles for the kids before SK goes for Chinese tuition. Instead of going for my long walk and jog at the park today, I will be going to Funan Centre with YK. He wants a new laptop. His 5 year-old PC is getting cranky. Well, he would need a laptop anyway when he progresses to tertiary education next year.
When it comes to matters like this, he knows I don't need much convincing. He could even visualise our shopping trip. We would be at the computer shops checking out the best deals. He already knew what model he wants, right down to the colour. He knows I would ask the salesperson to bundle in as many freebies as I can, then pretend to 'think about it', let the guy give his spiel before taking out my wallet. Then I'll turn to YK, "Now that I've bought you a laptop, it's time for you to get down to studying for your exams...."
That's how well he knows his mom! He's right. Just days ago, I went into town just to get him a burner, goggles and some 'elements' so that he could conduct his own chemistry experiments at home. He's really into chemistry these days and since these experiments are not harmful, I don't see why I shouldn't let him pursue his interest.
My friend says I spoil my kids. Her son wants to buy a computer but she insisted that he pays for it himself. It will take him months before he could earn enough pocket money to afford one. Perhaps he will treasure it more when he finally owns it. It makes me feel guilty that I make things too easy for my kids.
I remember buying them loads of dinosaur books and figurines when they were little toddlers enamoured with these fascinating creatures. Since these things weren't too expensive, why not? They learned all about dinosaurs at a young age.
When they became interested in butterflies, we went in search of all the different species in wooded areas in Singapore. The three of us romped through more tropical rainforest than an average adult Singaporean. In the midst of all this, we learned about plants, trees and vegetation. It was good education and family fun.
I can only console myself that while I can afford it, I will see to their needs as long as it enriches their learning and lifestyle. Of course, I must constantly remind myself not to be overly indulgent. It's hard, but I'll try.