Like losing a son

Kiddo used to be in the music team in what was then ICC Church. We’d send her for practice on either a weeknight or Sat morning, and pick her up maybe a couple of hours later.

Kiddo’s generally a happy-go-lucky sort of person then so she’d not say much about how she felt about those practices. Too often however, she’d mumble something about the team leader.

That team leader – Kah Mun – was a young, brash and in-your-face sort of person. Tress and I would ask kiddo how practice went, and she’d mumble something about getting stressed up by KM’s demeanour and harsh words and actions.

After hearing a few more accounts of such encounters – from people other than kiddo –  I’d go and speak with Jason. I had told him the effect this young hot head was having on the team and team spirit. People were getting put off.

Without fail, Jason would defend KM. He’d say things to support and build him up – not directly in front of him, but by supporting KM’s reputation and building up my esteem of  KM. He’d say things to get me to see the better side of this young man and accept him for who he is. He even succeeded in making me also want to encourage KM.

There were numerous encounters  like this. I’d relay to Jason what other said about KM and he’d keep saying good things about KM. He’d do all he can to build KM up, build up others’ esteem of KM. 

This went on for years.

Finally when Kiddo was doing year 12 and was starting to ease off her involvement in music ministry, I was sort of relieved that she did not have to be subjected to that harsh and tense practice sessions again. I said to Jason then that I was glad Kiddo was no longer involved and Jason would continue to say only good things about KM. By then I would also start to hear Mel using terms of endearment in referring to Rachel – as though she was her own daughter.

And so when KM was seated not more than 10 feet away from me last Sunday, publicly asking Jason questions in short and curt manner and in derisive and belittling tones that made it look like he had little time for Jason, I was aghast. I was also aghast at the same derisive and dismissive tone he used against my aunt (Tress’ aunt) – one who had such close ties to the family. It was a public dressing down by a young man against his elders who have done only the best to support and nurture him all these years.

Many later told me they were disgusted with what they saw and heard.

For me who witnessed for years, how Jason treated KM like a son, I am still trying to digest what KM did to him last Sunday.