As we celebrate Teacher\u2019s Day on May 16, let us not forget extraordinary mothers who are teaching us values in so many ways, shape, and form. Being a teacher is great, being a mum is, too. But to be both? That takes a hero. Mother of one, Cordelia Lee, is a facilitator in conducting stress releasing vocal toning exercises, a meditation teacher of non-religious methods and a sock-doll teacher! \u201cMy sock-doll making started in 2012, from exploring my creativity to making dolls for fundraising, gifts to the children in the hospital and more. Usually, whenever my son has his medical follow up appointments, I will prepare at least two bags of sock-dolls. One to be distributed to the paediatric ward and another to the cancer ward. Sock-dolls bring joy and hope. \u201cI have worked with humanitarian NGOs upon their invitation to conduct sock-doll making workshops over the years. Among them are World Vision Malaysia, Cybercare Youth Organization-UNHCR Malaysia, Breast Cancer Group JB, The Inclusive Outdoor Classroom, Ronald McDonald House Charities Malaysia and Refugee Network Centre Malaysia,\u201d said the bubbly 49-year-old. Teaching has reached out to so many going through a similar journey. Early this year, she collaborated with an empowerment coach named Joy Leng on some online projects as well. \u201cTogether we made videos accessible to the public for free. This is with the motivation to assist people's mental and emotional wellness. I have made videos that involve vocal sound techniques and mindfulness which help to destress and to assist in mind-heart-body wellness.\u201d Cordelia\u2019s passion for educating on mental and emotional wellness, together with her skill in teaching caregivers the art of making sock-dolls, did not come without much hardship and tears. Her son, Patrick (now four-years-old), was diagnosed with Alagille syndrome - a genetic disorder that affects primarily the liver and the heart. Problems associated with the disorder generally become evident in infancy or early childhood. Patrick's pain made her learn to be joyful and teach joy. While she was close to losing all hope, she decided that she would turn this challenge into an opportunity to teach her son and all those around her. \u201cThe biggest challenge would be facing uncertainties that come with his health condition since the day he was diagnosed at almost two-months-old. My faith in myself was greatly tested as well. For a long time, I had a strong belief that if we do not give up on ourselves, there will always be possibilities that shall assist us in overcoming our challenges. \u201cMy son's health condition greatly tested my beliefs and convictions. Once I was made aware of the possible future health complications including an early death, for a moment I was in despair, losing hope, faith and living in anxiety of losing my son. It was something I could not accept at first. It pained me greatly that my son had to go through physical suffering at a young age.\u201d It was during one of the many medical procedures that followed, that Cordelia learnt that she had to do something beyond her feelings of despair. \u201cAfter one surgery, the natural joy and shine from my son's face disappeared due to the pain of the surgery. He avoided looking into my eyes for a few days. The painkiller medication did not appear to remove all the pain from the surgery. \u201cI remember feeling saddened that his face no longer had that usual smiling glow. Instead, a painful and depressed looking baby lay in front of me. I told myself that I needed to make him smile again. From there on, I laughed more, danced more, and tried to uplift his spirits. His natural joy returned as a result.\u201d She told herself that even if her son is meant to have a short life, it should be filled with more love, joy, smiles and laughter, in comparison to his fears and discomfort. \u201cHe can still have a meaningful life despite it all. Once I made up my mind, I decided to uplift his spirits and self-belief. I gave him pep talks to overcome his challenges. I created songs and still sing my songs to him, to encourage him to have a mindset to be strong in the face of adversities.\u201d Every mum has her own challenges, although you might not see it. Teachers and mummies are all unique and beautiful in their own way, she reminds all the caregivers and nurtures out there, she adds that it's okay to make mistakes. \u201cIt's okay to have bad days. It's even okay not to be a perfect mum. Sometimes it's not easy having to juggle your time with work, family and other commitments. \u201cDo remember you have done all you can within your capacity and capabilities. Please don't ignore your needs when you need to rest, to have personal time. You need it, even for 10 minutes. So that you will not be overwhelmed to the point that it affects your thoughts and emotions. \u201cSometimes other mothers appear to have it altogether. Yet, we do not know the hidden story behind the appearance. The tiredness. The perseverance and endurance. The personal challenges or family challenges that are not shared openly.\u201d Despite her hectic schedule in caring for her son and conducting classes, she continues to soldier on. \u201cEvery day I have my usual self-care practice. I will find a personal time and space where I will destress, keep myself clear-minded while having a vibrant emotional expression. I will meditate, do some vocal sound exercises, qigong and prayers. I will write poetry as an emotional outlet. I will sing songs to keep myself uplifted and encouraged in faith, in hope, in positivity.\u201d While these past few days have been a tribute to mums and teachers who do it all for everyone else, let\u2019s remember to also practise self-care and self-love. Motherhood wishes all educators and nurtures out there a very Happy Teacher\u2019s Day!