FedEx Day #1: The importance of family

We’ve recently decided to introduce FedEx Day here at EASTWEST. For those who have not yet come across this, FedEx Day is an initiative invented by the Australian firm Atlassian. During FedEx Day, employees will take time off work to pursue anything they want to, as long as it does not relate to work in any way. The only condition in FedEx Day is that the employees must have something to share with the company at the end of it. To give some context to my first FedEx Day at the agency, I should mention that my dad suffered a mild stroke last week. Thankfully enough, it wasn’t a serious stroke, and he managed to escape with his ability to walk and think still intact. Only problem was that he was left with slurred speech. I left the office expecting to meet him and my mum at the hospital, but went straight home when I heard from her that he’d already been discharged. Once back home, I found myself getting tangled in separate and discreet conversations with the both of them. Firstly, mum would harp on about how bad his eating habits were, and how stubborn he was in regards to medication timing. Later on I had a cup of coffee with dad in our regular joint. There, he proceeded to ramble on about how it was not his diet that was the issue, but his complacency in not taking his medication that led to his stroke. He went on to defend his diet, pointing out how his bad eating habits were in part due to being accommodating to mum’s own unhealthy food cravings. Faced against his stubborn tirade of excuses, I knew he wouldn’t listen to any objections I made. Handling their griping and mediating every small quibble was reminiscent of dealing with little children. To me at least, it was slightly amusing. Thereafter, I informed him that mum only had his interests at heart, and went on to get him to promise to stay off greasy and salty foods while staying on constant medication. Likewise, I marched up to mum to get her word that she would support my dad’s eating habits by purging the fridge of cakes and ice cream; cooking for him as often as possible, and to eat the same fare as he did when dining out. Wouldn’t you know it, they agreed without any fuss. Not long afterwards I was stung by the realization that I was finally old enough to take the reins of household. With the two of them in their 60s, I now had to be the one making sacrifices to care for them, and ensure they were healthy and happy. Unknowingly, I was learning first-hand the importance of being filial. After all, just as parents raise their children, one day will come that the children look after their parents as well. For me, I knew the day had arrived. The circle of life was turning.

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