In My Parents’ Eyes // 親の目から見た
ink on envelope

In My Parents’ Eyes // 親の目から見た
2022. 05
91 × 103 cm
envelope, ink on washi paper

“In My Parents’ Eyes” is inspired by the letters my mom wrote before I was born.

Many people only learn how to be a parent until they become one. This work is to give us as children a chance to see ourselves through our parents’ perspective and to experience all the joys, worries, excitements, anxieties and happiness of having a child.



When I suffered from depression, one of the things that I questioned myself the most was what’s the purpose for me to live in this world.

It was not until I read the letter my mother wrote that I realised I was once a soul that they most wished to welcome into this world. Their hopes were never about how much success or wealth I achieved but rather simply wish I would be happy and healthy. Perhaps this is what we have forgotten in this topsy-turvy world, the purest meaning of life, which is to experience happiness and misery, sadness and joy, and most importantly, love.



“Dear… you,

    Yes you, you in there, the one whose sonogram started out looking a bit like a kidney bean and now looks like, well, nearly a baby: how are you? I haven’t always adapted well to change in the past but I believe this will be different.

‘I am ready.‘

All I know is that now I am just a girl, as your father is just a boy. We have experienced great moments of happiness. Although sometimes I feel a bit anxious and overwhelmed about the prospect of being a mother and having responsibility for another life. I worry that I will fail you, that you won’t be happy when you grow up and it will in some way be my fault.

But your father makes everything feel slightly easier, he is kind to me, patient and considerate. He sure is a good man with the best intentions and I want you to know how much I love your father. I’ve never seen him so happy and excited about anything, I think there was a lack of intimacy between him and his father, and I know he will do anything to avoid that with you.

After you were born, there are moments when I truly hated my body. I hated how it scars and looks sloppy, I hated how the weight gained and I hated the way I see myself. Then, I look at your small angelic face and you remind me of how lucky I am to be a mother and that my body is not ruined.

I am a tigress who has earned her stripes.

In the years to come, we will teach you so much but you have already taught us infinite amounts.

You have taught us to be selfless.
You have taught us, pure love.
You have taught us that it is possible to have a piece of our heart outside of our body.

We pray that you never let this world dull your bright and lovely personality. We pray that the world is less cruel to you than it can be. Because it will be cruel. But we will do our best to soften it if even just a little. There are a lot of things that are up in the air. The future is uncertain and never turns out in exactly the way you expect but we will figure it out together as we go.

We will love you for the rest of our days and beyond.

You are our moon, our sun and our little stars.

Your Mom and Dad


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© Nelson Hor Ee Herng