Life is precious yet I don't treasure it enough. Why do I take each day for granted?
In June last year, a friend of mine fell ill.
The news came as a shock to everyone. He was about the last person you'd expect to be unwell because he's always been strong and athletic.
Over the past eight months, we have all been praying for him. We get updates on how he is from his wife via a Facebook community page a schoolmate started.
I've visited him a few times. The most recent was over the Chinese New Year when H and I - we were all in junior college together - dropped by.
He was seated and not in pain, could speak a bit and was eating, which we were very thankful for. His wife and two teenage children were there. We took photographs to remember the day.
It's been a painful period, most of all for his family.
It has also been sobering for me.
Every time I think about him or after visiting him, my throat feels tight and my heart is heavy.
How I wish things were different.
How I wish he were well.
How I wish he were like before, living a normal life with plans for his future and his family's future, us meeting once or twice a year for a meal to catch up.
I wish I could turn back the clock or just somehow make things okay for them.
But I can't, of course.
Thinking about the situation he's in, I also wonder: Given that life is so precious and precarious, why don't we appreciate it more?
Why don't we love it more, cherish it more, savour it more? Before it's too late and you find yourself sick or suddenly staring death in the eye when an accident strikes?
I speak for myself, of course.