SINGAPORE - The past year has been a trying one for Pan Ling Ling, but the local actress is determined to face adversity with a smile and a positive attitude.
In April last year, a routine health scan showed she had six cysts in her breasts, which led her to take six months' medical leave from acting.
The cysts caused discomfort and the full-time MediaCorp artist had them removed through surgery.
Then, in November, her father, Mr Phua Kan See, 75, was diagnosed with lung cancer.
Last month, in hospital, when his heart stopped beating, she and her two younger brothers had to make the decision that every child dreads - whether to resuscitate him. They chose not to.
His death was extremely difficult for her as she had been very close to him.
She declined to reveal more about her own medical condition except to say that she is feeling better now.
Pan, 43, said: "I had to handle my own situation first before I could take care of my dad.
"I didn't wallow in self-pity. I simply went for the surgery. Many women have lumpy breasts, so it's safer to take out the 'useless' lumps.
"I had the operation so I wouldn't feel the cysts all the time. I was officially back at work two months ago but my projects haven't started yet."
On Feb 2, the third day of Chinese New Year, Pan and her brothers were notified at the hospital that her father's heart had stopped beating for four minutes.
The doctor asked them to decide on the spot whether they wanted to try to resuscitate their father.
Said Pan: "I love my dad more than anything in this world and he can't be replaced.
"I'm closest to my dad because I guess it's true what they say about fathers and daughters.
"The doctor told us that if we chose to try to restart his heart, there would be only a 10 per cent chance he would survive, and, even then, he would be a vegetable or be in a coma.
"The doctor said, 'Let go or we will try, but you have to make the decision now.'
"I asked him to give me 10 minutes, but there was no time.
"My brother said, 'Sis, let go', and I didn't want to see my dad suffer any more, so I did."
This article by The New Paper was published in MyPaper, a free, bilingual newspaper published by Singapore Press Holdings.
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