Last week, my mother celebrated her 60 years old birthday. I asked my friend to help me buy a vegetarian cake for her at a nearby bakery. It turned out too dry, so next time I will get one from the secret recipe. That will be pricier but birthday only comes once a year.
My mother is fairly more peaceful than ever before, she has suffered much in her life. Her own father that is my late grandfather died when she was only 14 years old and my mother was 7 years old. My mother was the third born of 7 siblings so she took care of the younger ones while my grandmother sells vegetables to feed the whole family. My mother could not study beyond Form 3 so she was limited to low-paying jobs. She was selling flowers at the market when someone introduced my father to her.
After they were married, my father suffered a brain haemorrhage unexpectedly when I was 3 years old. He survived but became unable to regulate his emotions and could not work. My mother took up low-paying jobs such shop assistant and hypermarket promoters that paid little to raise me and pay the bills. I have seen my mother breaking down from intense emotional stress so I used to be very scared of her. As a child I did not know why did she seem so scary, no one explains it to me.
In my early teens, the extended family broke apart over finances, my parents were gravely misunderstood and cornet. They were accused unfairly and they threatened to have their homes taken away It aggravated them and they became understandably defensive.
In fact the year of 2005, when I decided to raise funds for surgery to save my own life, my parents were lashing out their pain at home everyday. I feared for the worst so I mustered all the strength and grit I could and raised funds in the public myself. I did not want my parents to fall into to ruins. I never clearly told this to my supporters because how do you reveal your parents’ helplessness to strangers? So I kept quiet when people ask. Fortunately, I was blessed with matured supporters seeing my silence and speechlessness, they said “no need to explain, we will help”
That was the environment I was dealing at home all those years ago while I battled with Neurofibromatosis and raising the funds to do so up to the age of 24. My parents slowly changed for the better as I became more empowered over the years through my own fundraising projects. Likewise, if I did not get back on my feet after my vision was damaged after surgery at the NIH last year. My mother will be in desolation and despair again on her 60th birthday this year. Presently, if I do not strive to obtain the first chance of surgery success to prevent my arms from becoming crippled today. My mother and I will live with the consequences the rest of the lives.
If you empathize with my sentiments and determination, please consider chipping into the cause of my next surgery. You may channel your contributions to

Maybank Account

Name :
Foong Ming Niang & Chia Kwee Que
Joint Account Number:
5122 2206 0663

PayPal or Credit Card

If you are from overseas, you may contribute via this link

Yvonne Foong

As a child, Yvonne Foong dreamed of growing up to help others. To achieve her ambition, she began studying to become a psychologist. But things changed when tumours were discovered in her body at the age of sixteen. She was diagnosed with neurofibromatosis type 2 -- a genetic illness with no cure. Fighting for survival, Yvonne turned to fundraising and embarked on a medical odyssey to the United States. Her experiences since then have transformed her into a motivational speaker; inspiring hope, faith and strength. Yvonne is currently working to establish a humanitarian foundation that provides NF patients in Malaysia with financial and logistical support. Visit Works of Gratitude to learn more.

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