Nenek Mummy missed Ninie

When I was a student in Manchester, I would give my mom a call almost every weekend. she would do most of the talking of course and I’ll be ”ummm” or “oohhhh” for the one hour call or so. It was one of those 1 min = 1pence callrates.

When I became a houseman (HO) – the calls became less frequent but compensated writh a text message on every other day.

When I became a medical officer and got married, the communications vary from one form of media to another. I think we used to have Viber Calls. Now it’s Watsapp. But not as frequent as my calls in Manchester.

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Earlier last week, I sent my MOm a video and a pic of my daughter. A few days later, my dad sent me a Whatsapp. My mom missed her granddaughter a lot. She was replaying her videos almost all the time and talking to her pictures. So I told my husband that we really needed to make that weekend trip to Jenjarom.

I try to visit my parents at least once a month but eversince I had Ninie, I haven’t been keeping up with my vows. I felt guilty. Ninie is now 5 months and this is the first time she’s sleeping over at Nenek Mummy’s house. Prior to this, it is my parents who have been doing the visiting to Melaka to see us. So Minci.. please do better. Jangan buat hati Mummy nangis rindu2 OK.

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The pursuit of love in between him and him

My teaching session finished an hour earlier on Friday. So I made my way to Tesco to withdraw some money at the ATM machine and get my fix of carrot juice. I wanted my juice to go but the lady at the cashier forgot and not wanting to trouble her further, I just took the glass to the nearest table and took a sip.

Then this song belted out in the background of the already noisy food court. I sang along softly to my favourite part, “what are you waiting for???” and almost immediately I couldn’t help reminiscing on my past. The time when I was a fish in the sea (again) after a breakup with my asshole 1st boyfriend.  Yes, he broke up with me over Yahoo Messenger on the weekend just before my exams. Bangang rite. I think I resorted to controlled self destructive behaviour and made a bonfire with his paraphernalia.

A few months later, I had a string of dates with frogs to choose from. Hoping that one will become my prince. There were a few ” I will call you later” sorta dates. Sometimes from myself, others from them men. You just get that vibe of a relationship not happening from that one date. Things that put me off? Likely he had an opinion for almost everything on the planet, force me to talk about myself too much, too lackadaisical, pry too much on my previous relationship, too Islamic (I know, sorry).

Then there were those who made the initial cut. Only to discover later that he hates your housemates or your best girlfriends. Ada ke cakap “gelak kuat, macam laki, I tak suka”. Wahhhh.. goodbye dear. No future dates. No one gets to say bad things about my friends.

Then there were experiments. Well, just one. We were both from very different backgrounds. He was a non muslim to start with. In a way it was one of those relationships where you’re just not sure where it would be heading. We didn’t have a name for our relationship. If people ask whats with him having lunch with me – he will reply “pengyao (friend)“. Yet he treats me like I’m special. Vice versa. He would call me up at 0500AM as I get ready to go to work to take the morning bloods of sick babies – just to say Hi. We would have dinner together almost everyday even when we’re oncall, where we would steal time just to have 5 minutes together. It was nice while it lasted. Then after he went back home to Miri to visit his parents – the romance just ended. Like that. No proper goodbyes. It just ended. I think we were both puzzled as to why it ended. Wait, I think I know why. I found out he was seeing another girl there. Someone of the same background. Takpela.. I faham. I redha. I think the soundtrack of my life at the time was Black Eyed Peas song “Meet me halfway” for this particular chapter. Frust jugak but terkawal. We can still work together as housemans.

In less than a year, I met my husband during my surgical posting. He was far from romantic but he was responsible. And intelligent. He was willing to replace my partner in the operating theatre who was on Emergency Leave (EL) that day. Coincidentally we were scheduled to be in the OT of a very boisterous and demanding surgeon that no one liked. I called up the ward asking for a volunteer and was prepared to be ‘bam-booed’ the whole day until this tall, gallant, fearless, chivalrous guy by the name of Syafiq came. He was technically towering over the shorter surgeon. The mood in that OT somehow changed – I was suddenly the reliable houseman who could hold the camera very still due to my low pusat graviti and my husband was very alert and quick to obey instructions.

We didn’t start dating until I left my surgical posting though. And the rest is history. Our love story was not dramatic enough for Ellie Gouldings song. Nor is Michael Bubles Home cause that reminds me of Italy (another wonderful chapter of my life). OMG.. we don’t have a soundtrack for this chapter of my life. I need to find one.

 

Lubuk Pahala. To each their own. What is yours?

Caprice says Social Media is the new Power. Sadly, how true. It is very easy to just judge someone based on a single photo or a video cut short. You drink a cup of coffee beside a penguin they say you want to abuse it, a guy wears pink to his grandma’s birthday party to fulfill the theme – netizens say he is gay. Just because he hugged a male cousin who is also wearing pink in ONE PHOTO.

But that is Social Media. We also cannot run away from being judgmental on a first encounter with a stranger in real life. We categorize people based on what they wear or who they hang out with. Pakai purdah is Arqam.. or sesat.. or antivaccine. Tak pakai tudung is tak solat, tak kenal agama. Cam tuhlah. Sedangkan we may never be sure the good things they do to please Allah. The Lubuk Pahala Allah gives to people we think have sinned greatly or is far from perfection – simply because He loves them!

Perhaps to a GRO, He bestowed her a disabled child whom she loves dearly and cares for unconditionally. To a childless couple a great amount of wealth so they could be generous and sedekah always.

And yet being human, we still judge. I too have my fair share of incidences which woke me up and made me istighfar as I felt awful for judging them too early. Eventhough it was not on Social Media tapi bila terdetik , “Eeeee.. dia tak malu ke mcm tuh. Tak insaf ke?” or “camnelah dia nak masuk syurga”.. it still feels bad.

#1

Once during medical school in Manchester, I was in the same group with this very energetic, young male Lebanese Muslim. He was popular for he loves to mingle with everyone. To the muslims, he would greet “SalamAlaykum Sisters/Brothers”.. to the non muslims it’ll be a hey man sorta thing. He would join every single social gathering like a pub crawl or a costume party. He does not drink alcohol but he socializes freely with the ladies. He would give them nice big hugs. Never a kiss but hugs definitely.  He wears a tight top which shows off his well sculpted body almost everyday.

I was wearing a hijab like those muslimahs you often see and I did not go to pub crawls. Not even the MESS PARTY. Hence it was easy for me to say ” kenapalah suka nak gi tempat2 camtuh” Until one day….

We finished our group session for the day. Being the friendly guy  he is, he was asking me (my sister Yasmin, that is what he usually calls me) how I was doing and how I should show him around Malaysia one day if he’d ever reach here – while rearranging his books and papers in his bag, when suddenly he brought out a little Quran. My immediate response was “oouh?” while pointing at the kitab.

He said “yeah yeah.. I bring it with me everywhere sister. I read them everyday. Are not the words of Allah beautiful? Our prophet Muhammad S.A.W. is such a lucky dude to be the first man to receive His words yeh?”

I was at lost of words. This man who hugs girls, goes to pub crawls – brings The Quran in his bagpack everywhere and reads them daily! Aku? Kadang-kadang seminggu pun macam tak sentuh. That was one of the biggest lessons I have learnt about Lubuk Pahala. This friend of mine, his was InsyaAllah in the reading of the Quran.

#2

There was this lady at work who wears the hijab as part of the uniform but frees her hair outside of work. Yet you can tell that she is kind from the way she talks and treats other people. So it was easy to say, “budaknya dah baik, kan bagus kalau dia pakai tudung”. Then you learn that she is more than kind – she prays her solat Fardhu on time and not only that, she wakes up at night for her tahajud. And she is not even above 30 years old. MasyaAllah.

Aku? Who will be 35 this year? Solat kekadang hujung waktu. Tahajud apatah lagi.

InsyaAllah her Lubuk Pahala is in her prayers and with time InsyaAllah she will cover herself as well.

To err is human. But we should always find ways to improve ourselves and please Allah. Find your Lubuk Pahala and work hard on it until you can become a good muslim as a whole in other aspects of your life. Do not depend on that one Lubuk Pahala though, for the ultimate goal is for us to have a ‘Good Ending’ and pave our way to Jannah. And that does not lie on Sedeqah alone. Or prayers alone. Or religious fasting. We need to still practice Islam as a whole. InsyaAllah.

 

Zoo Melaka. With the baby this time.

Ninie has not been adventurous as a baby. Her older brother Ee, at her age have already had his first flight experience from Sarawak to KL. Ninie have not had that opportunity yet and I doubt she’ll get the chance to travel SEA countries as much as Ee. This is because Mr Husband is in a study program and his leave days are confined to only 14 days a semester. Even if we could clear our schedule, we have Ee’s formal schooling to think about.

But we did not want her to miss out on the fun. So we brought her to our favourite zoo. ZOO MELAKA.

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TICKETS

ADULT (MYKAD) : RM15. CHILDREN (MYKID) : RM6

We arrived at 10AM on a Saturday morning just so we could beat the crowd. We had a heavy breakfast at home and brought our stroller. Baby Ninie is already 6.5Kg. Too heavy to put her in a carrier and walk.

Toilets were plenty. There was even a surau. I don’t remember seeing it there before. We skipped the bird show cause we have seen it a gazillion of times.

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There were deers and kancil almost everywhere. Also monkeys. Ee of course enjoyed the elephants. I, on the other hand was mesmerized with the shape of the giraffes pËnis. The giraffe looked ready to mate but it just wouldn’t get on with it. So I had to leave. Mr Husband loved the safari trail cause he could do his 10,000 steps on the pedometer. Baby Ninie was oblivious to her surroundings.

We finished our visit by 1140AM. Our parking coupon was well timed. Yeh, you need a coupon to park there. As always, the mandatory picture with the turtle statue before we head off for lunch at the nearby McDonalds.

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Interesting things always come from being really exhausted and really sick – Adam Driver

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No interesting thing yet at this part of the world. But I strongly want to document Today.

I really have to thank a colleague for realizing that I need Time Off today. I have been unwell for the past few days, mostly due to lack of sleep and the cold flu. I have no documented high body temperature but the muscle ache is lingering every now and then. Yesterday, I was already feeling the grittiness in my throat and was hoping I could drink lots of water and sleep it off.

Unfortunately, I had very little voice this morning. Although physically I am able to do manual work, I need my voice to ask patients and give necessary advice during consultation. I can’t do that. But I went to work anyway praying for a miracle. Furthermore, being a newbie at my workplace – I hate to be the one yang baru masuk kerja, dah mintak cuti (my husbands umrah thing), dah mintak MC. Because I know I am not that type of person. In fact, I tend to put someone else’s needs before mine (like tak cukup org kat tempat kerja or someone needs to swap) because it’s just what I do. I guess it’s a mother thing. LOL.

However just 5 mins into my job, my colleague who has been there for many years already … suggested I take a sick note. She feels its not appropriate for me to work in that condition. I was thankful. When you have a senior looking out for you, it feels less guilty asking for a sick note from your boss. Cause you know how some bosses are, they’d ask your senior colleagues for feedback instead of directly asking you if you are coping or otherwise. Some bosses may want to know if you are really that sick or fooling around. But not asking you, tanya orang lain. heranlah aku.. 

When I was a so called senior at my previous workplace – I too try to help out my younger colleagues as much as I can when it comes to say, them falling ill or needed to swap. Simply because

  1.  I feel it is my responsibility as a senior, to look out for and speak up for those whose voice may be a tad smaller than yours. Sebab kalau kita, siapa lagi nak membela nasib anak bangsa. Gittew.. 
  2. Allah has given so much to me, to ease my life and Mr Husbands life. Allah made it possible for Mr Husband to transfer to his hometown where he could be close to his parents and take care of them. And them also helping to take care of their grandchildren when the need arises. So far, both of us rarely have to take EL when our kids get ill or needs to go to a competition on weekdays coz the grandparents can help to fill in our shoes. In return, we both try to be amanah in our jobs and help others (friends and colleagues) around us who needs help and ease their burden. Nak tukar oncall? boleh. Tukar slot locum? boleh. Perlu EL today cause anak sakit and their own parents jauh? Go ahead, we got your back. Coz the kesenangan and utuh family support that we benefit from today is not just for us, it’s also a tool for us to extend help to others who need it. InsyaAllah.

So here I am at home looking out at the sun. Without the baby. But with Ee to keep me company. I have a jug of water to finish and 2 bottles of tamarind juice to consume. Speedy recovery Minci. Esok sambung kerja.