Tan Kheng Hua is not your stereotypical Asian mum.
In an Instagram post on Oct. 7, the 59-year-old actress wrote about her daughter's life's plans—or lack thereof—after graduating earlier this year.
According to Tan, 24-year-old Lim Shi-An hasn't gotten a full-time job, doesn’t exactly know what she wants to do, and hasn’t got a well laid out plan for marriage or getting her own place or anything else.
"Does this bother me?" Tan wrote. "Not an iota, not for a moment and in fact, it is exactly the sort of state I encourage her to be in at the moment."
In fact, Tan said that she is "really proud" of Lim for not blindly following "familiar Singapore paradigms"— perhaps referring to the pressure of securing a full-time job, buying a BTO flat, getting married, having kids and such.
Besides having enough part-time gigs to sustain her lifestyle, Lim has also grown into the young woman that everything Tan and her ex-husband, Lim Yu-Beng, wanted her to be.
Curious, hard working, vulnerable, wilful, responsible, and loving were some of Lim's traits that Tan named.
As a testament to their close relationship, Lim would also confide in her mother any anxiety, loneliness and uncertainty she feels.
The 24-year-old also plays many other roles besides being a daughter, and Tan has good things to say about all of them:
"[She] takes care of both her family homes —mine and Yubes’ [Yu-Beng]. Sees, takes care of and entertains her grand-parents consistently. Is a great friend. An evolving partner. A doting (sometimes over-indulgent!) mother to Toastie."
And if you need further evidence just how selfless of a mother Tan is, read the rest of her post. We can't put it better than she does.
In a 2020 interview with Vogue Singapore, Tan admitted that she sometimes has to hold back on her love for Lim, who is an only child.
“To be honest, till this day, I wish I had three kids—just to see how their lives are going, how they’ve developed, what they look like, whether they are tall, who their boyfriends are… but I just have one. So sometimes I have to pull back this outpouring of love for Shi-An.”
Two years after giving birth to Lim at 35, the actress went through a miscarriage.
Tan regularly dedicates her Instagram posts to Lim, expressing how much she loves and misses her daughter.
Top photo via Tan Kheng Hua's Instagram page