10.1.15

At your Feet

I am finally able to really sit down this week. It's only been a week since my grandmother went back to the Creator, but i think because i was in and out of the hospital, i couldn't pay much attention to the broken part deep deep down in my heart; that is until today. I've written and mentioned Che in my writings a number of times, so i decided to search for the word 'Che'. a list of posts popped up, and i'm a blubbering mess right now after reading them all. That little hole she left me with has just gotten bigger.

I want to remember her. So as much as this is a sharing for anyone who stumbles into this blog, i'm writing today to keep her in this little hidey hole of mine. So this might be an ultra long post, and i'm not even sure of what i will write. But i will. So here goes: our little story.

********
03.01.15

Abah picked me from the hospital at 7am. Post tag-call. It was only a day or two after the 'banjir' has gone down. Instead of going straight home, Abah drove me to Auntie's house. It's been about 2 weeks since i last saw Che. And i heard Che was not properly eating a day or so. She was sleeping when I arrived, which is not unusual. But she looked so tired. I checked her pulse. It was fast, but it has always been like that for the past months. I was too preoccupied listening to Auntie telling me the banjir story that day, as they were trapped for the past few days in the house at Kg Pendek, Salor. I remembered thinking, "nasib baik Che tak sakit teruk masa tu". Breathing a sigh of relief knowing that a nurse will attend to Che later in the evening. I said my goodbyes, but somehow i didn't kiss her cheeks like i normally do.

Little did i know that was actually my last goodbye.

I slept late that night, it was almost 1:00am. I tried finishing some slides, and was prepping myself for my on-call the next day. I was almost dozing off when i heard some small knocks on my door. Then later someone opened the door, left some keys and closed it back. I was a bit confused. But i continued sleeping. Then i heard the sound of Abah's car leaving the house. "Che?" I thought of her. Did something happened? But i pushed that thought away and continued sleeping. Only to be woken up a short while later with a phonecall from Abah.


"Yan, che takde dah." 

After subuh i was all prepared to go to  Auntie's house where Che is. Abah, Mama and Lin came back for their shower and we head back there. The house was filled with family members. I saw Che covered from top to toe, surrounded with people reciting the Quran. I wanted to see her face, but i couldn't because of the people around her. I sat near her feet and started reciting Yaasin. Then i lifted the cloth at her feet, and saw the bandages around her foot ulcers. I touched her feet, they were cold. And i can't help myself and sobbed. 

Time passed and it was time for mandi jenazah. My heart says i just have to do it. So i went and asked Mok Su, the one in charged. She said yes, sure you can. And together with other family members, we bathe Che. As gentle as we could, and as careful as we could. Apologizing now and then, if we are hurting her in any way. Some were crying, but i wasn't. The feeling was indescribable. I washed her ulcers, some were new. I realized that those new ulcers developed when i started working in the hospital. I didn't even know. :'(

I went for the burial too. I know it's not advisable to go there, but i wanted to. Just this once. And i get to see arwah Ayoh (grandfather)'s grave too. Right beside Che's. And after it was finished i went back to the hospital for my oncall. And the days passed. Coming back and going to the hospital somehow made me numbed.  Allah kept me away from sadness for the time being, making me forget that i have lost a very special person in this lifetime.


*******
A few weeks before i came back for good from Dublin, Che had a stroke. I came back to a new version of Che. No longer the forgetful one who can sit on her own, but it's someone who's always sleeping. Who looks lethargic all the time. She seldom speaks. Only when she wants to. Even so, her words are short. Sometimes she remembers, sometimes she doesn't. She eats very little, so we started giving her those special milk, via syringes. On good days she'll have a good cup of milk per meal. On bad days she'll have only a quarter of a cup. She can no longer bathe herself, so we have to lift her up to the toilet, to wash and bathe her. It's difficult for everyone and even her. But we just have to do our best.

I came by as often as i could. Everyday or every other day. Checked her pulse. See if she's dehydrated or not. When i'm worried, i asked Mama to call the doctor. One time, we went to Kuala Lumpur for weeks. For my interviews and so on. And i came back to Che developing huge foot ulcers. And she was feverish too. And  my new routine started. To keep watch of her ulcers. To do her dressings. After a few visits by the doctor, we all learn how to deal with her ulcers. I did my very best. It's not like other family members can't do it, they can. But back then, i wanted to be the one doing it for Che. Because i knew i will no longer have much chances to do it when i started working. And because i knew that the time i'm spending with her will soon runs out. And because everybody else were doing something for Che, bathing her, feeding her, so that's the least i could do; to be the cucu doktor at her feet. :')

One time, she opened her eyes when i came to do her dressing. She was a bit healthier that day. More alert. She saw me, crooning down, huddled at her numb feet. She asked someone around who i was. And i answered: "Cucu che la. yan ni. Che ingat kan. Che, yan jadi doktor dah ni Che." She looked at me. "Ouh.. doktor dah?" Did she knew then? Wallahua'lam. I just wish she did. i pray that she did. 

As time passes her condition deteriorates. Bit by bit. Thinner by the day. She was sleeping most of the time. Refusing to open her eyes. She drinks her milk with eyes closed. She seldom talks. A few weeks before Che passed away, she stayed at our house for 2 weeks. I only started working at that time, and i was still able to tend to her feet because she's at our home. And i get to kiss her in the morning before heading for work. But one time, I listened to her lungs.... I talked to my aunts. Che is and will deteriorate further, i said. If she suddenly gets really sick, what will we do? No hospital. That was the unanimous decision. As much as it was a heavy decision, but i felt the same. Hospital would be too much for her. But i prayed that no such event will happen for us to make that decision.

And nothing happened. She was sleeping that night. But her breathing was different. A bit heavier, that was what my cousins noticed. After midnight, Auntie finally called Mama. Auntie wasn't exactly sure, but she told Mama, Che looked a bit different. Hence, the knocks on the door that night before they left me at home. Mama and Abah didn't bring me with them because they were not sure of what was wrong, and was worried that i might be too tired for work the next day. But i was told, after a while of heavy breathing, suddenly Che was gone, after kalimah Allah. :'(


***********
Che. The once grumpy grandmother with her very pedas words. She would rant about this and that, and made some of her grandchildren fearsome of her. But i saw through her. Despite her ranting about our "seluar apa panjang labuh ni, lipat tinggi-tinggi, nanti heret tahi ayam, nak sembahyang macam mana?"making all of our trousers/ skirts lifted an inch before entering her room - she was a big softie.

I remembered years back, when i started kissing her on the cheeks, despite her annoyance; "Che busuk buat apa cium? Kenapa cium orang tua macam ni?" But i still do. And eventually i realized that whenever i was about to go back after visiting her, she have this expectant gesture, saying that she is busuk but giving me her cheeks still, knowing that i will kiss her no matter what she says. Cute. :)

I will remember the summer days i spent with her, whenever i came back home from Dublin. We would count the years left till i graduate. And i will ask her to pray for me. Che doa sokmo (selalu). And i would cheekily ask her to pray for my jodoh too, asking her that she has to be healthy until the day i meet my Mr Right, because i wanted her to listen to the guy reciting the Quran in front of her, just like she did towards me. Cause sometimes she would ask me to recite Al-fatihah, or Al-kafirun when i'm in her room - fixing my A'in, and Qaf and Ra, always the wrong Ra. and it's always a huge accomplishment if i could recite the Quran with her listening, without any fixes. And she would also cheekily answer my requests: "Che doa sokmo yan boleh hok juruh (baik). Nanti baca doa ni lepas tu tiup kat orang Yan berkenan". :') Che and her antiques.

Sadly i didn't get to bring any Mr Right to you, but i take comfort knowing that whoever i get later on has always been someone who was a part of your prayers insyaAllah. And most importantly, i am blessed that your prayers were with me the whole journey of me becoming a doctor. And i believe whole-heartedly that without Che's prayers, i wouldn't even be where i am today, or who i am today. Thank you Che, because of your prayers, you have made us - your anak-anak and cucu and cicit- as who we are today. It's time for us, your grandchildren to do our part now. To be better Muslims, and send lots and lots of prayers for you insyaAllah.


You will forever be remembered as my cute grumpy Che.
Praying that i will meet you again in Jannah,
Aamiin wa insyaAllah.

One who misses you so much,
the cucu at your feet. :')


*******

"Apabila seorang manusia mati, putuslah (tulisan pahala) amalan
kecuali tiga perkara (yang akan berlanjutan tulisan pahalanya) iaitu
sedekah jariah 
atau ilmu yang memberi faedah kepada orang lain
atau anak yang soleh yang berdoa untuknya."
[riwayat Imam Ahmad]


semoga doa anak-anak dan cucu-cucu Che diterima.
Aamiin.

13.12.14

mind rant #26: A Jittery Start

This will pretty much be my last post before i am officially a working doctor. And perhaps it might take a long time before i could write the next one. All the feelings are there: nervous, excited, disbelief. We're pretty much at the very beginning of a new chapter in our lives that will change everything that we thought we were. Fuh. Dramatic betul ayat.

But to a certain extent, it is true. Cause we can only know who we really are by how we handle ourselves and others, when we are at our lowest or scariest. and housemanship training is just that.

******

I've just finished the 5-day-course PTM (Program Transformasi Minda). Google it up to know what it is. It had been a fun week, really. Overall i'd say it's a week full of realizations of who we really are now: adult, with responsibilities. And huge ones too. *peluh kecil*

But we had fun times too, seeing ourselves as who we are deep down inside: little kids at heart. Cause it's quite funny when you realize that these are actually hospital doctors that you are seeing on the stage: acting as 'not-well-in-the-head' people, dancing to cute songs, wearing those wolf and kambing masks, singing to songs with hands waving in the air. We had a good laugh together. So for fellow juniors who might stumble upon this entry looking for PTM experiences, don't be too scared, you'll pretty much enjoy it.

And now it's already less than 24 hours left before the real thing begins. Housemanship is a tough training, and is definitely not meant for the weak-hearted. If we think that those 6-7years of medical training was hard enough, this will be a whole different level altogether. We've heard enough scary stories to prepare ourselves mentally and physically, but we can never really expect what will happen in the near future. Or how would we even cope. Because despite the many stories heard, in the end everyone's experiences will all be different as we would all handle our situations differently.

So the easiest conclusion is always the most basic of all, to put our trust in Allah and do our best. It will be a struggling two years but set the right intention and seek Allah's help: All, The. Time. That we can do what we mean to do, and trust that Allah's help is always on the way. Just ask. That's my motivation at the moment, for i can't really plan for anything else. 


Ilmu milik Allah. 
Skills pun milik Allah. 
Hati orang pun milik Allah. 
And hati kita pun milik Allah. 


So i'll do what i have to do, And leave everything else to The One who's always there for us. :) So do send me and my friends some doa for our new journey. 


That our intention in this field of work is always in the right path.
That our time and energy spent will be filled with barakah, most importantly.
That we will meet people -be it colleagues, seniors or patients- 
who will help us to be better beings.
That we won't lose ourselves in the middle of it all.
And that we'll go through all the little ups and downs safely 
insyaaAllah wa biizdnillah. :)



PTM group 8

Half of MRSM PC doctors
batch 05/06/07


and the truth is, Allah has already blessed us with an abundance of ni'mat even before we even started. Most of us got a place close enough to home, together with friends who we've known for forever. and now old friends are coming back together, and we even have new friends who are as awesome as the ones we already have. (note: there'll be another 65 people going into HRPZ II together with me tomorrow. heh) so it's pretty much unfair for me to complain of anything at the moment. nothing much i could say other than, Alhamdulillah ala kulli hal. :)

before i end this rant, here's a doa i've been meaning to share for some time now. i've stumbled upon a section in the Quran a while back, it fits our moments of desperation perfectly i'd say. the time when you wished for everything but you just can't say it? and this doa somehow says it all and i loved every single bit of it. huhu. it is from a hadith:



Rasulullah s.a.w bersabda:
"Jika manusia menyimpan emas dan perak, maka simpankanlah kalimah-kalimah ini,
"Ya Allah, sesungguhnya aku memohon ketetapan dalam menjalankan agama ini dan keteguhan dalam petunjuk.
Aku memohon kepadaMu agar aku dapat bersyukur terhadap nikmatMu.
Aku memohon kepadaMu agar dapat beribadah kepadaMu dengan sebaik-baiknya.
Aku memohon kepadaMu hati yang selamat dan lisan yang benar.
Aku memohon kepadaMu semua kebaikan yang Engkau ketahui.
Aku berlindung kepadaMu dari segala kejahatan yang Engkau ketahui.
Dan aku memohon keampunan kepadaMu dari segala dosa yang Engkau ketahui.
Sesungguhnya Engkau Maha Mengetahui semua yang ghaib".
[Hadis riwayat Ahmad]


Ameen ya Rabb. :)
good luck everyone. 
may the odds be ever in your favour. *wink*



20.11.14

Redha

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ






Redha; 
means to wholeheartedly accept whatever decisions that Allah s.w.t. has decided upon us. 


********

I was busying myself with treating Che (grandmom)'s foot that night. And by treating i meant those really simple stuff actually: removing bits here and there, cleaning the skin, rubbing it till it bleeds a bit, pressing the skin, applying antibiotic creams, putting on gauze etc. She has diabetic foot ulcer. Anyway, the TV was switched on in the background, which i was not really paying much attention to. But i caught on some words now and then. I think it was probably a show similar to 'Bersamamu' or something, where they show stories of those who are less fortunate than us. So at that time, it was a story of a single mother, trying to raise her kids who are handicapped. Two of them are mentally and physically handicapped if i'm not mistaken, and the youngest was the only one who went to school. The little one herself suffers from depression. And then I lifted my head to watch a few seconds worth of footage when they interviewed the mother. She looked close to 60:

"Makcik redha hidup macam ni sebab ini yang Tuhan tentukan."
(I accept this life as it is, as this is Allah's will)

and i silently continued wrapping Che's foot, with a new-formed tug in the heart.

*********

My parents went to visit a recently orphaned siblings. Eight of them. They were all still in school, the eldest being 16. Their dad died a few years back, and now the mother died recently. From an accident. Their step-dad couldn't afford to support all of them, but he did take the two youngest children with him. He does come by and visit the step-children now and then, since the mother passed away. So the 6 are left living with their old grandparents. The house looked okay, Alhamdulillah, but it was inevitably pretty empty. Mama took some photos with them, and i see these beautiful faces smiling back. Genuine smiles, together with their grandparents. 

Redha.

***********

My little sister has this cute gang of her back in highschool. I knew all of them, though i haven't had the chance to meet them as much as i wanted to. My parents knew their parents. The girls even cried when they all have to go their separate ways for college. The furthest one is currently in USA. She's so smart that she gets to study abroad way earlier than the others. And last night, her mother died. Innalillahi wainna ilaihi raajiuun. Apparently her mother had been sick for over a month now, and she was actually planning on coming back to Malaysia this December. But things happened too fast. Listening to what she went through while her mother was sick, broke my heart to million pieces. She texted my little sister this morning:

"My mom died. Can you tell the others?"

She just turned 18 this year. She is the eldest daughter in her family, 
with nine younger ones trailing behind her.

Redha.

***********

"Aku redha dengan ketentuanMu."

They are words that i often utter whenever i feel life is a tad bit difficult for me. Whenever i feel like things are not going my way. Whenever there are turns of events that i didn't expect. But these stories, made me feel so ashamed of myself. Of how different my 'redha' is, as compared to theirs. Of how easily those words slipped from my mouth, when i'm not yet even tested.

Their 'redha' requires a whole lot more: patience, will, strength, and perhaps things that i could never imagined. I can never, ever understand how does it feel like to be in their shoes. But I can only offer them prayers, that with their 'redha', Allah s.w.t will grant them with so much more, if not here in this world, then most certainly in the Hereafter. 

May Allah ease everyone's sufferings and burdens.
May Allah guide our hearts and mind, in times that we needed Him most.
Dan semoga Allah Redha, terhadap hamba-hambaNya yang redha dengan ketentuanNya.

Al-fatihah.

ps: To my little sister in USA, i wish i can give you a warm hug now. 
But do'a is what i can send you for now. :'(


وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّكُم بِشَيْءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوْفِ وَالْجُوعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الْأَمْوَالِ وَالْأَنفُسِ وَالثَّمَرَاتِ وَبَشِّرِ الصَّابِرِينَ
الَّذِينَ إِذَا أَصَابَتْهُم مُّصِيبَةٌ قَالُوا إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ
أُولَٰئِكَ عَلَيْهِمْ صَلَوَاتٌ مِّن رَّبِّهِمْ وَرَحْمَةٌ وَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُهْتَدُونَ

"Dan sungguh akan Kami berikan cobaan kepadamu, 
dengan sedikit ketakutan, kelaparan, kekurangan harta, jiwa dan buah-buahan. 
Dan berikanlah berita gembira kepada orang-orang yang sabar. 
(yaitu) orang-orang yang apabila ditimpa musibah, mereka mengucapkan: 
"Inna lillaahi wa innaa ilaihi raaji'uun". 
Mereka itulah yang mendapat keberkatan yang sempurna dan rahmat 
dari Tuhan mereka dan mereka itulah orang-orang yang mendapat petunjuk. "
[2:155-157]


6.10.14

25




I have now reached my 25th year of living, as if the title and the picture aren't making it any more obvious. =_="
Point aside, Alhamdulillah, for everything. :)

As the years add on, the celebration gets less fancier. Well, at least that's how it is in my life, according to my yearly birthday posts. heh. It's a quite one this year, no cakes, no surprises, just being contented that i am a 25-year-old lady still enjoying the comfort of a beautiful home with my two beloved parents, who if i may add, are in good health. And that, is a huge nikmat that i am very much thankful for.

my birthday conversation over breakfast:
parents: happy birthday sayang :)
me: thank you.
parents: yan nak apa tahun ni?
me: kasih sayang.
parents: ok. 

*********

Since i have nothing much to say about birthdays, i thought of sharing something that i learnt from a book. Instead of waiting for facebook notifications as my birthday approaches (as suggested by the witty Pika) i actually spent them trying to finish off the last few pages of the book that i have been reading: And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini.

For anyone who are intending to read it, i'll try my best to not spoil it for you. I've been reading the book for a few weeks actually. I often read a huge chunk of it, and then leaving it laying around for days before continuing on, hence, the longer time it took for me to finish it. Mind you, not being glued to it daily doesn't mean it's not a good book, cause now that i have finished it, it's now my favourite one, finally kicking The Time Traveller's Wife from my top spot.

Despite its awesomeness, and the countless heart-breaking moments that the stories left me with, i haven't cried at all while reading it, unlike all my other favourite books. So when i decided to finish the few pages that's left, i never expected any work coming from my tear-factory but oh boy, it did. A bucketload of them. And it's all just because of the few last paragraphs. How could a book broke your heart yet left you loving it? That's pure talent of Mr Khaled. *clap clap*

So why did i love the book so much? The stories in the book are of so many different characters who are intertwined with one another, and yet they live such different lives. And as i was reading it they all had one thing in common: 

they are all struggling. 
Against love, against family,
against work, against poverty, 
against greed, against goodwill etc. 

The ending was even confusing, it was really meant for the benefit of the readers, not the characters. Despite an ending that broke my heart (which also left a huge patch of tears on Mama's pillow *sorry mama*) somehow i am contented with it, because that's how reality is, how life is. 

It's not perfect. It's flawed, and it always will be. 

So unlike the world that we are living in at the moment, where people are always posting online their happy lives, and happy pictures; reality is far from reaching any perfection. So these little bits of life that are being shown to us and by us, are only what it is: bits. Often we are either blinding others with these bits or are the ones blinded by them. Hence forgetting a simple fact that all of us have our own struggles, big or small: sick families, broken relationships, a shitload of work, crazy clients, back-stabbing friends, harga minyak naik tengah2 malam *woops-slip-of-mouth*. The list goes on. And yet, we still love looking into others' happiness just to find some faults in our own, forgetting all the nikmat that Allah has bestowed upon us. 

So being reminded of things like this from a book, is actually quite refreshing. Making me less worried, and a little more hopeful for the things that i am facing at the moment: too much free time that's eating away what little is left of my brain-cells, jiwa kosong due to the lack of reminders, traumatizing over when will i start my work at the hospital and how scary it will be, parent's worrying (or was it me imagining things?) over my lack of potential suitors *heh nak jugak mention*. may i remind you, that these are just some small concerns that i'm willing to share. tip of the iceberg, so to speak. But I know for a fact that in someone else's point of view, perhaps my 'iceberg' won't even fit any of the 'struggling criteria' to even be called one, but who are we to compare? we all lead very different lives, hence the different ujian. Some need physical strength to face theirs, some mentally and others emotionally. we are in no place to judge what others are facing. what may be small to us, may be huge to others, and vice versa. 

In the end, i realized that i've only tasted a little bit of bitterness in life, but i know that there will definitely be more coming my way. Am i prepared for it? Wallahua'lam. I hope i am, with Allah's help and by Allah's will. After all, this short-life is only a test. Let's just hope we all ace it enough to have that beautiful shiny ending called Jannah. :)

and here's a huge reminder to keep us all going:


أَحَسِبَ النَّاسُ أَن يُتْرَكُوا أَن يَقُولُوا آمَنَّا وَهُمْ لَا يُفْتَنُونَ

"Apakah manusia itu mengira bahawa mereka dibiarkan (saja) mengatakan: 
"Kami telah beriman", sedang mereka tidak diuji lagi?"
[29:2]

cause life isn't life, without ujian.

Ps: i'd like to thank everyone for the lovely wishes and most importantly the du'a that you have been making, i pray that Allah accepts from me and you. Jazakumullahu khayr and Eid Mubarak peeps! :)


*yes. the parents love blinking at the exact same time the shutter clicks*
*cubaan pose remaja to deny my aging process*

*our EidulAdha this year*

29.8.14

Blending In



As i'm dusting off this little old blog, i realized that it's been roughly 2 months since i came back home for good to Malaysia. And truth be told, i haven't been sitting at home leading the sedentary lifestyle that i thought i would. I have been going back and forth to the airport close to a dozen times now. Other than the 10-day-trip to Utagha to visit my friends, everything else was unplanned. I just got home yesterday, but i was already booking the next flight to Kuala Lumpur. By now i feel almost exhausted, often only having less than a week at home before i head off to KL again. Nevertheless, on the bright side, abah and mama usually always ended up joining me. And we all get to spend time together, watching the 3 munchkins a.k.a Boolats getting bigger by the day.

So this little background story is the reason to why i haven't had the time to actually sit down and write anything properly. But it's also the reason to the abundance of stories and reflections that are safely stored in my tiny brain at the moment. Contrary to how i was back in Dublin, where the people that i would talk to would mostly be in a hospital setting, my recent travels have led me to meet so many different people in different environments. From extended families, to old and new friends, to random cashiers and even an Indonesian stranger on the train.

I find myself trying to blend in, into the different groups that i am with at any given time. The topics that we talk about, our body language, our choices of words, our facial expressions, the jokes that we make; they all changed accordingly to the ones in front of us. Not because we're insecure with ourselves, but sometimes out of respect to the people we meet. And it's just common sense, that we'd start off a chat with someone by finding a common ground with them; be it the weather (albeit it being the most boring topic of all), the mutual friend that we have etc. But interestingly enough, on rare occasions, i met those who did otherwise. 

They talk only about what they wanted to, mainly anything that revolves around them: their work, their ideas, their lifestyle and whatever awesome things that they have in their possession. Sometimes they even use big bombastic words in simple conversations, not even waiting for any signs of comprehension from the other party. And this, sadly enough, leads to this feeling of awkwardness, or that feeling of a huge invisible wall in between, or worse, when we -the listeners- find ourselves attempting to leave in the middle of the conversation, literally or not. 

The social cues were there, when somehow the person you're talking to have nothing to say in response to what you're saying. Not because they don't want to, but because they just couldn't. Some may say; "oh come on.. Some people are just not that good at talking." But the thing is, i think we all can agree that there's a huge difference between those who can't talk, and those who can. Being on a less husnudzon pace, i tried to understand the reason why some people just chose to create this awkwardness in conversations, and i came to one conclusion: 


When we talk to impress, rather then to converse.

Because conversing is always a two-way communication, whilst impressing is a one-way yak. We want to look good, we want to feel good, we want to let everyone knows what we did good. Hence, we ended up talking about nothing but everything that revolves around us.

It's a rather sad personality for anyone to have, naudzubillah. Hence, let's pray to Allah to be protected from this sifat mazmumah. I don't even know why, but i have met too much of these people lately that it seems a given that i should remind myself of this small little mistake that we might have made in our daily lives, with or without realising it. 

And maybe, just maybe, 
blending in isn't such a bad thing after all. 
Wallahua'lam.

Be cautious with our words.
Be cautious with our acts.
For Allah is the Ever-Watchful.

Astaghfirullah. Wa atuubuilaih.


لَا تَفْرَحْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ الْفَرِحِينَ
"Janganlah kamu terlalu bangga; 
sesungguhnya Allah tidak menyukai orang-orang yang terlalu membanggakan diri".
[28:76]


23.7.14

Deaths of 17th


بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ
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17th July 2014.
A day that will forever be remembered in history, as the world was shocked with two devastating news;

the MH17 tragedy.
and the start of the ground invasion in Gaza.

Innalillahi wainna ilaihi raajiuun

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My name is Evie Maslin. I was 10 years old when I died on the 17th of July 2014. I was a part of the MH17 tragedy, which has cost me my life, the lives of my two brothers Mo and Otis, and my dear grandfather, alongside 294 other people. I would never have known that the world will know me after my death. For our pictures are being pasted on the front page of countless newspapers. Many now even knew who we were; how charismatic I was, how clever Mo was at school, and how that strange little Otis was actually a brilliant kid. People all around the world are making prayers for us, but don't worry, cause we're now safely and happily in Heaven. But I do hope that you'll send some prayers to my beloved parents; to lose all of us this way is something that shouldn't happen to any parent. So thank you, world. For you have been kind enough to keep me in your prayers.

**********
My name is Fulla Shhaibar. And I was 8 years old when I died on the 17th of July 2014. I was a part of the oppressed in the occupation of Palestine, and I died on the day Israel decided to start the ground invasion of Gaza. On that same day, my two other siblings were also killed; Jihad was 10 years old, and Wassim was 9 years old, but i bet nobody knew that. We were killed, together with so many others that day. But maybe most of the world doesn't even care about us, as many don't even know how we died. 

Were we shot at our heads?
Were we buried under the rubble from the shelling by the Israelis? 
Were we bombed full-on, tearing our limbs apart? 

But at least our bodies were recognizable, that our names make it into the registered deaths in Gaza; which has now amounted to 600 people. Most of them are little kids like me. But don't worry about us, because we are now safely and happily in Heaven, too.

But I do wish that people would pray for us a little bit more. For the other friends my age who died before me, and for those who are being killed now and the ones who might be killed later on. I know that my death and so many others are no longer something new. We were being killed for years now, but it seems like the world didn't know this before. Because we were never in the newspapers. Even if we were, it would be mentioned in that little column in the corner. We were rarely mentioned in the news. And i guess nobody will know us for who we were; 

what our dreams were, 
how bubbly i was, 
how funny Wassim was, 
or how witty Jihad was. 

Nobody will know that. 
Nobody will know any of the kids who died in Gaza.

But I hope that the world is starting to know this now, because the world has changed. For it seems like people are starting to wake up from all the lies that have been fed into them. I was so happy to see so many people who are starting to stand up behind us Palestinians. So dear world, i hope you would not sleep again this time around. Do wake up and see for yourself of what's happening to Gaza. And wake the others around you, too.

And lastly, 
Please, send Gaza some prayers.

"Du'a is a weapon of a Muslim,
a Pillar of Deen and the light of skies and earth."
[hadith]

***********

I have nothing else to say lately. the abundant videos, photos, and statements from witnesses have left me speechless and numb. and i know it's not just me. I'm writing this just to remind myself and others.

Let's do our part. Muslims and non-Muslims.
This is not about religion, this is about humanity.
Free. Free. Palestine.

Astaghfirullah.
Waatuubu ilaih.

28.6.14

A Chunk of Metal: Part I

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ





Leave your country in search of loftiness
And travel! For in travel there are five benefits,
Relief of adversity and earning of livelihood
And knowledge and etiquettes and noble companionship
[Imam Shafiie]

I've had the chance to travel a bit right after we finished our final exams, after receiving our results, Alhamdulillah. I wanted to go to Paris. So i half-begged half-manipulated my musketeers (anak-anak Zainol) to accompany me there. For they have been there a few times before with other friends. I've been there once too, back in my first year, but at that time i wanted to fulfil my childhood princess dreams that i only spent my days in the Disneyland.
But anyway, we planned a quick and short and cheapest trip as possible. And Epah, another batch-mate of ours wanted to tag along too. My aim was pretty simple, i wanted to spend my days travelling with my bestfriends, for the last time. And another is to see that Eiffel tower for myself. To figure out what it's all about really.
And we did a 2-day handbagging vacation, cause each of us brought sufficient amount of stuff to put into our handbags. It was great I'd say, and the weather was very helpful for beautiful pictures alhamdulillah. We even went to the same places within the 2 days, cause apparently, Paris is not all that big. Ok, i think it's enough of the trip's introduction for now.
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So on the last day there, right before we headed to the bus stop that will bring us to the airport, we decided to kill time sitting at the garden (i don't really know the name of that place, but i'm sure it does have one) across the Eiffel Tower. The weather was beautiful so we joined the mat salehs, sitting around enjoying the cool breeze and watching so many different kinds of people -tourists from everywhere- walking past by.
"In the end, people from all over came to see a huge chunk of metal." 
Ika suddenly blurted out.

and we laughed together realizing how true it is. It really is an overrated huge chunk of metal. Don't get me wrong, it's a nice place to visit, but i think coming here with the right mindset is very important. We had a somewhat deep conversation together under the shades while trying to avoid the harsh sunlight. I was thankful, that i came together with my friends. Aaand with a tight budget. So we did what all travellers do; We eat cheap food, stayed at cheap hotels, took the cheapest transport possible and all the other cheap stuff -though perhaps not the Laduree macaroons. That, was also totally overrated. I didn't even know such a name exist till the day we actually ate them. Heh. Quoting a friend of mine - "lepat pisang lagi best" hehe.
I guess we all can agree now that we have been spoon-fed with all the glamours and glitz that people talked about whenever Paris is mentioned. And perhaps too much of those, got into our heads, and into our actions. Cause during our trip, we actually met a bunch of Malaysians; most if not all, would often avoid our gaze, and some even made me wonder if i actually had the Invisibility Cloak on or something. Perhaps giving Salaam somehow hurt them? Or smiling back is quite a difficult facial expression for them? Or was it our shabby looks, that didn't fit the description of "Paghi: the city for fashionistas only". *sigh* wallahua'lam. 
And while we were travelling, Ika mentioned about how some Malaysian blogs showed the type of stuff they do when they come to Paris. Things like getting chauffeurs around, going shopping for Prada and Gucci and whatnot,  together with pictures of them stepping out of vintage-looking cars just outside of Eiffel Tower, with clothes straight out of the latest fashion magazines. And let's not even mention the bright red lipstick. Heh. When we went back to Dublin, i looked into the so-called blogs and really did found myself dumb-founded by the 'reality' that these blogs bring. Well perhaps for those with money, maybe they are the stuff that comes to mind when we mention Paris. But for mere human beings like us, trust me, it's just a normal travelling experience. And don't worry, not everyone looks like a model when they come here. :)
My point to this all, is that sometimes we get too caught up with these overrated stuff that we read off the internet or magazines or from movies that we watched, that we all drown ourselves in our fantasies, and forget what travelling essentially is. And Paris is sadly one of those places that succumbed to these dreamy ideas. So when we go there, sometimes i think we held our heads up too high, acting all posh, dismissing everyone who seems 'less' than us. 
City of love? 
I'd say it really is a a city full of people thinking they are in love. 
Fashion trend-setters? 
I'd rather wear jackets in the cold breeze rather than attempting to brave it just to look cool in the cameras. 
Acting posh? 
I'd opt for a little smile just to acknowledge one another. *sigh*

So i guess that is why i was totally grateful for travelling there together with my friends just like the way we did- the college student style. no glamour. And definitely no glitz. We did exactly what travelers do wherever they go; experience the place, the people, the food, and take back home some lessons learnt for life. There's more to travelling than just the pictures that we took. Look around us; the scenes, the people we encountered, fellow travelers like us, the histories of the places that we visit, and the list goes on. but inevitably our generation is somehow slowly fading away into the lands of selfies and instagrams, just like what the social media taught us to. Yes, pictures are great for the memories. But won't it be too much of a waste if that's all that we gained from our travels? 
For all the money that we saved and spent to go there, 
and yet we gained so little spiritually. 
Something worth pondering upon isn't it?

Wallahua'lam.

Ps: this post really does kick me back in the gut. A huge self-reminder for someone who took lots of pictures there. Haish.. *peluh kecil* And here's one of our own at the garden where this whole post came to mind. :P thank you girls. For being the best travel companions one could ever ask for. :)
Alhamdulillah ala kulli ni'mah.



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