Life's Tsunamis

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

"Kalau tak yakin Allah ada nak ajar something
Aku tak rasa aku mampu face benda (ujian) ni."
[if i don't have faith that Allah has bigger plans for me,
I don't think I can even face this (test)]

A dear friend of mine said this to me, once.

We were attached to the Neurology team a few weeks back, Paediatrics Neurology that is. All in all, it was a totally awesome rotation I must say, seeing all the amazing weird things in the wards. But like always, the awesomeness in our part contradicts with whatever the patients and the families are facing. Cause when we are enjoying the mysteries behind the illnesses, they are the ones who have to face it all, living day in and day out with these mysterious and complicated illnesses. 

And what is more heart-wrenching is that diagnosing a child or little babies with diseases also meant that they will have a whole future of uncertainties in front of them. Albeit not having any myself just yet, but I know enough that the lives of our children are the ones that meant so much more than ours. When we would literally risk our life for the sake of our children. (Of course, we're putting aside all the mental ones out there who hit or even kill their children for God-knows-why.)

We had our last wardround that week; and started off at the imaging department. And the radiologist was describing a brain scan of a little baby, few months old. Basically he had subtle changes here and there, which also meant that he would have problems in each area of the brain that is affected; movements, sensations, cognition, memories; none will be spared. Finally we had our rounds and reached a bed with a very plump, cute, doll-like baby boy. And the consultant started explaining whatever that we have discussed earlier on, bits by bits. And i was watching the mother and how she was holding the baby the whole time. (Yes, i must say that this is one of those bad communication skills; breaking a bad news via ward rounds huhu)

The consultant went to explain the details of the whole brain scan, to try to make the mother understand that basically the brain is underdeveloped. The mom was holding the baby so tightly as he was sleeping in her arms, stroking his arms, clutching him tighter as the reality of the whole thing starts to sink in. We understood whatever the consultant was explaining to her, as she did simplified the whole thing as much as she could, but all the mother can ask at the end of it all was;

"So what would happen to him? Can you fix this?"
And the tears flow.

The rest of the team backed out and left the consultant alone to consult her with another doctor. I stood back with my teammates. So here is the reality. The interesting scan we found in the room back then meant  a whole different story for the one owning it. Their plans for the son's future destroyed in an instance. And they don't even know where to start. Allahu Allah. 

And these kinds of things pricked my conscience the most. Having to see people face this huge, huge test; but yet not being able to have faith in Allah the All-mighty. Not being able to say that; 

"it's okay, Allah is watching over us."
"It's okay, Allah has a bigger plan."
"It's okay, Allah will guide us."

It always amazes me; how can these people with no faith are able to face all these ordeals, way better than us (the Muslims)? It's rather apparent isn't it, when Muslims don't even have patience when they are queuing in lines at the airport, let alone in facing these kinds of tests. We'd see Muslims shrieking and shouting with agonies when something bad happened to them (exceptions to the whole killings in egypt etc) and yet we see the Japanese, who mostly don't have much faith in religion, calmly saying "it will be alright" despite having everything they have, washed away in the tsunami few years back (watch their documentary, you'd be amazed by their portrayal of sabr.)

So i guess to be able to have that faith, that Allah is there for us, with any tests that He gave us, is definitely something we should be thankful for. But this only applies to those who believe. Only His believers will be calm enough to face whatever 'tsunami' that's coming our way, big or small. Only His believers would be able to feel that sense of tranquility deep down; despite the pain and the emotions and the stress that comes with it. Mind you, we are only mere humans. We'd cry, we'd be depressed; but believers would always have that strength in the end, knowing that Allah is there to guide us through it all.

The bigger the test, the stronger we need to believe that Allah knows better.
And that makes all the difference. So peeps, be strong! 
Allah is there. InsyaAllah.


وَلَقَدۡ خَلَقۡنَا ٱلۡإِنسَـٰنَ وَنَعۡلَمُ مَا تُوَسۡوِسُ بِهِۦ نَفۡسُهُ ۥ‌ۖ وَنَحۡنُ أَقۡرَبُ إِلَيۡهِ مِنۡ حَبۡلِ ٱلۡوَرِيدِ
"Dan sesungguhnya Kami telah menciptakan manusia dan mengetahui apa yang dibisikkan oleh hatinya, dan Kami lebih dekat kepadanya daripada urat lehernya"


In Memories Of

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

I first saw her name from the famous wedding pictures that she took. A few random friends and strangers sent me that picture through my facebook. I remembered reading her uptake about the wedding; listing things from the simple make up to the simple hantaran. I remembered thinking; "ah, female photographer is a good idea."


This particular female photographer passed away on 16th of August 2013 at the mere age of 26. I knew about it from the newspaper, during the summer holidays back home. I am not her friend, nor am i related to her in any way. but up to this day, there was always something about her death that bugs me; that i can't even stop thinking of her up until today. Not that i miss her or anything, but the thoughts of her came to me more often than i wished for.

Because her sudden death, which i believe is a huge loss for those around her; has given us (or at least me) a lot to ponder on. I looked her up in the internet, the day after her death, and found that the last thing she did in her facebook was promoting this pictorial project, aiming to teach others the meaning of what we recite in our prayers. 

Perhaps if she was still living and breathing, we might have look at her project with an eye closed.
Perhaps if she was still living and breathing, we might have said "well it's a no biggie project, really."
Perhaps if she was still living and breathing, we might have been more awed with her wedding pictorials rather than the 'makna bacaan solat' pictorials.

But in the end, perhaps Allah wanted to teach us something through her, that any little reminder of Allah is nothing too little. Cause if we were to die, any deeds; no matter how insignificant or small they are, those deeds that we often take for granted are usually the ones that we wish we'd do more of.

"....hingga apabila datang kematian kepada seseorang dari mereka, dia berkata: “Ya Tuhanku kembalikanlah aku (ke dunia), agar aku berbuat amal yang saleh terhadap yang telah aku tinggalkan..."


Her last facebook cover photo was about 'bacaan solat'.
Her last project was about 'bacaan solat'.
Her last post was about 'bacaan solat'.
All to remind us of Allah s.w.t.


I wonder what our last act would be?
May Allah grant us a beautiful end.


Al-Fatihah to arwah Nadia Zahari.
May your last act remain as a constant reminder to me and everyone;

that no matter how simple it seems,
reminders of Allah are still reminders.

(do click on her name to go to her JomSolah project)


mind rant #19: Strength

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

it's been a while folks. though i do have something in mind to write about, i just thought of a more laid-back and very short entry tonight since it's already waaay past my bedtime (finishing some study-related work, being the geek i am).

anyway, last week i went to meet up with some friends for a housewarming party. meeting those familiar faces is definitely something i miss. there's really only a bunch of us left for our final year as a medical student, insyaAllah. in Dublin alone, we have three main universities; RCSI, UCD and TCD. there's about 10++ Malaysians for UCD and TCD and perhaps a bit more for those in RCSI (lucky them). but the chances of us meeting one another ever since our clinical year started is very limited, cause all of us are thrown away to different rotations and different places. Truthfully it's even hard to meet up with those who are in the same universities!

so the occasional gatherings are something that we try not to miss, really; otherwise we'd live a very lonely life here in Dublin. of course, there are those gatherings for Malaysian students in general by all those student organizations, but that's only occasionally and we'd always ended up lost in the huge crowds of juniors in their pre-clinical years (lots of those who are in a twinning programme), them not knowing us, and vice versa. Don't get me wrong, we all tried our best to get to know one another. :P

anyhow, back to the housewarming party, i felt a very different feeling seeing those familiar faces, Alhamdulillah. somehow everybody knows the struggles that each of us are having; the lonesome travels to random rotations, the crazy exams, the maze-like hospitals, the creepy Consultants. and it's cute enough that when we do meet up with one another, we'd be giving out tips; offering notes, borrowing books, giving directions to which bus to take etc.

and one word came to mind: 

somehow we have become the strength to one another. pushing each other to all be doctors by the end of this very difficult journey. and my prayers is that we'd all ended up not just being good doctors, but awesome Muslim/Muslimah too. Aamiin ya Rabb.

so here's a little peek of us:

UCDs: 4th and final Meds together. some are missing though.

funny witty ladies. i love them to bits!

random: this was last week's peripheral rotation in Kampung Wexford.
insyaAllah, perhaps my last peripheral rotation in Ireland (sobs)
ps: notice the very unhealthy diet for a medical student :)

now i cant leave the two anak-anak Zainols, can i?
i'm a lucky gal to have them with me every step of the way. :)

gah~ now that i'm looking at these pictures, i really can't believe that it's been 4 years since we set foot in Ireland *teary-eyed*. we have so much to be thankful for, Alhamdulillah. pray for me and friends here pretty please? That Allah will guide us all the way in our final stride. Aamiin wa InsyaAllah. :)

at times like this, it's best to remind ourselves with one of the best reminders of all right?
[one of my fave verses too of course]

فَبِأَىِّ ءَالَآءِ رَبِّكُمَا تُكَذِّبَانِ
"Maka ni’mat Tuhan kamu yang manakah yang kamu dustakan?"

and of course, say Alhamdulillah;
just because we can. :)

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