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*



بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

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. 



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.



"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.


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. "



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?"

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*


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. 

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".


Deaths of 17th

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

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

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."


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.

Waatuubu ilaih.


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.
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?


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.


Mind rant #25: A Jumble of Thoughts

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

It's been a while. A long while, i'd say. I plugged in my earphones and put the song of my blog on replay. I missed this feeling, really. Cause i would often write my thoughts with this particular music on. Life has been hectic. Alhamdulillah, we graduated on the 5th of June 2014. My whole big family arrived about a week prior to that, and I have been blessed enough to spend those 15days with them. And right after that it's packing time, and mind you, it ain't easy putting 5 years of girly stuff into a few boxes. So yes, life has been packed. As much as it is a blessing, for being able to do all this, for being able to end our 5 years in Dublin, we realized - i talked to Pika about this - that 'hectic' is a scary word. 

Cause we do find ourselves a little bit further from Him; 
a little less of the Quran, 
a little less of the rawatib, 
missed Tahajjud and so on. 
Astaghfirullah. It's not the best thing to share, i know. But it really did happened. :(

But now that the 'hectic'ness is almost over - we have packed all our stuff - we are only counting days before we leave Dublin for good. And we're planning on going down the memory lane for the last few days we have here, reminding ourselves of what has taken place in these 5 years that has somewhat built us as who we are today. :)


Ramadhan is now literally around the corner. i guess everyone is having that fluttering feel inside their tummy now. it's always a nervous feeling before Ramadhan. when the countdown begins i would always have that worry at the back of my mind, if i'm able to reach it? if the last Ramadhan was actually my last? but with those worries, come doa, right? so here's to praying that we are able to reach the days of Ramadhan with our loved ones and Muslims all around, and that we'd live throughout the holy month, and gain as much as we can from it, for it's Allah's Gift, for those who seek for Him, insyaAllah.


And for the next few posts, i might just do a little bit of throwbacks here and there. Cause so much has gone through my mind, yet i wasn't able to write it down. I was blessed enough to do a lot of travelling over the weeks since i finished Med school, and with it, came many stories that was best to reflect upon. So here's to praying that i will write some good reminders soon, insyaAllah.


Too much blessings have been coming my way, that i did find my thoughts wandering off occasionally, when will the next ujian (test) that Allah may give me, cause we all know that life is only a test. But it did came. I got a call from my parents saying my beloved grandmother is quite sick at the moment. Going from bad to worse in only a day. So if anyone actually comes across this post, do send some prayers for her; semoga Allah panjangkan umur Che. semoga Allah ringankan sakit Che. I still have many days before i'm back home, i pray that Allah let me be with her like He always does. And that Che is able to see her granddaughter finally becoming a doctor like she always prayed for. :'( Ameen.

And today is Mama's birthday. I didn't even remember it during the phonecalls we had. A twist of fate isn't it? cause Mama's birthday is definitely a day to thank Che most importantly, for enduring everything to bring Mama to our world. May Allah eases everything for the both of them; both the ladies of my life. Ameen wa insyaAllah. :'(



Second Phone Calls

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

My parents called me today. And they asked me some small things that they are worried about. But because i've explained it to them quite a few times before i found myself brushing off the whole thing, and explaining it again to them half-heartedly. Though it may not sound that way, but i know that during that phone call, i was actually annoyed.

Later on, i was texting my brother when he said that they were asking him the same thing, and he became a bit annoyed too. Eventually he had to call them again, cause he felt bad for the way he talks in the first one, hence the need to apologise. And eventually i found myself doing the same thing too;

Of making that second phone call.


This is not a rare thing, really. It's apparent isn't it? That we are always doing less to those who are close to us, those who we love. We are less cautious with the words that we use, often hurting them at the end of our conversations. We are less in control of our emotions, easily bursting into anger or out of annoyance at any given time. We are less sabar with anything that they do, huffing and puffing whenever we feel like we want to.

We do less for them,
of what we would do for strangers. 

Cause with strangers we keep our face lit up, even with the most boring conversation ever. With strangers we keep all our emotions in check, even if they do or say the stupidest of things. It's this weird mechanics that we have inside us. It's not a bad thing of course, we should be properly-mannered human beings. But it's just a bit sad to acknowledge that we are not that 'well-behaved' with those who we are close to. And the reason to this, as much as we'd hate to admit it;

Is because we take things for granted, too easily.

But i guess it's one of the many flaws that we have in us (or is it just me and my brother? *awkward silence*). And admitting we have flaws doesn't get the job done either, unless we make a mental-note to ourselves that we should do better than that, and act on it. Which i guess explains the second phone calls that we have to make.

So i guess i'm writing this time to remind ourselves to be more thankful with what we have, and who we have; hence guiding ourselves to be a better person to them, as well as for our own sake; when we have to answer to Allah s.w.t one day. And more importantly, to remind myself of my mistakes, and here's to hoping that there will be less 'second phone calls' in the future, insyaAllah. :)


i called them back, said sorry and did my explanation but i was brushed off; When abah passed the phone to mama a little quicker than he normally does. And mama said "Oh takde apa-apa la yan..." (Oh, it's nothing Yan.) Followed by this silence.

"Mama, what are you guys doing? Are you watching movies?"
"Aah. oooh tu die datang da" (Yup. oooh here he comes)
- referring to whoever psychopathic dude in the thriller movie that they are watching. 
yes, my phone call was actually disturbing them. hehe.

They may not have noticed it at all, and wasn't even hurt with whatever that we said. But it's important for us to realize when we have actually stepped out of our lines, and to always apologize whenever we do. I guess as much as we want to avoid making those second phone calls, perhaps it might not be that bad at all. Cause at least we still have a heart to even make one, rather than nothing at all. *wink*

“All the children of Adam constantly err, 
but the best of those who constantly err are those who constantly repent.” 
[hadith At-Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, Ahmad]

to forgive and ask for forgiveness, always.
let's do this lads!


Mind rant #24: The Climb

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

mount Bray :)

For being able to write this post, i thank Allah s.w.t.
For being able to experience this, i thank Allah s.w.t.
For the chances that i had, the people that i encountered, i thank Allah s.w.t
For all the doa i have received, from known and unknown ones, 
Jazakumullahu khayr, only Allah is able to repay you back.
I am certainly sure that without these doa, i will never be where i am today.

Truly, Allah is the best planner of all.

This, perhaps will be one of my longest rants of all. But i just have to write it down, i need to write it down. I hope that it will somehow benefit or even inspire others, but most importantly it is to remind the future me, who will one day be at her lowest point in life, that once, Allah had blessed me with what i wanted, letting me reach the peak of a long and difficult climb. And to keep myself in gratitude, with what He has given me. InsyaAllah.

For truly with hardship comes ease.
Truly with hardship comes ease.

Again, i remind you that this is a very long rant. So i thank anyone who's willing to read this. And for those who're not that willing, i thank you anyway for still reading up to this point. And if you could do me a favour to scroll down to the very bottom, and pray for me and friends? Jazakumullahu khayr.

This, is a chapter of my life. So here goes;


Professional Completion Module
We came back from our holidays/electives to start this last module of our 5-years of medical school. It will lasts for 10-weeks. And we all knew that time will fly, so so fast, and it really did! As scary as it had been though, we did enjoy ourselves in between. Listening to talks from the consultants about life as interns, they really do give you that boost of energy that you need. All the while trying to remind us to enjoy our last moments as students.

*here's us (with anak-anak Zainol) enjoying ourselves here and there. with ice creams and flowers*

Study groups
We weren't the best at sticking to study groups. We never really had any when we were in our pre-clinical years and even during our clinical years. Until we realized that finals are coming up so we really have to get our heads into this, or else we'll get left behind. So together with the anak-anak Zainol (pika and ika), we'd be studying everyday, going through whatever topics that we decided on. Ika's smallest bedroom is our main port. With ika at her desk, and I will be perched in the most backache-inducing position on ika's bed; with pika on the other end of the bed with her own unhealthy-posture. This was our routine.

Our little group is called the Flame and Moths, cause both me and ika will somehow do whatever that Pika asks. Hence, the theory, that she is the Flame that all Moths are attracted to. heh. Sometimes we even wondered if she possesses any black magic to lure us in. Hmm. And on weekends we'll head to the James Joyce Library, now back to our '3 Musketeers and a Zorro' (fitri hakim) group. And Akem will always ended up taking our pictures by the end of it. :P towards the remaining days, the girls (Suha and Ecah) came by and sleep at our house, to study together like we always do for the past exams we had :)

Sorry, i really don't want to forget all this, that's why i'm writing it all down. But here's the main point, the only way for you to ever get through med school, is by study groups.

Trust me. We're not meant to live alone. :)
and again i thank Allah for blessing me with them.

and this is Mr Zorro. one who'd take pretty pictures for the three of us,
who doesn't like pictures of himself, cause he does that kind of weird Zorro pose. :)

Final days
And as the final exam approaches, we all became much more vulnerable. And there's only really one solution to it: prayers. And night prayers (tahajjud) was the one that is most important that helped us through this. And trust me, it hasn't been easy. The very early Subuh here in Dublin made it even much harder to wake up for Qiam, and you cant really sleep early cause the Isya prayer is quite late. But we'd all be knocking on each other's doors or miscalling the other's handphones whenever we do wake up. Sometimes the knocks work. Sometimes it doesn't (and we'd be rolling like sushis inside our duvets huhu). But we tried our best to keep close to Allah s.w.t. InsyaAllah.

And i don't think i need to remind anyone about the importance of tahajjud at this point in time, we all know how special it is. The only problem is how hard we try to stick to it. So don't worry if we failed multiple times, the important thing is we tried and we keep on trying. :)

The du'a made in Tahajjud,
is like an arrow that doesn't miss its target.
[Imam Shafi'e]

yup, years worth of notes.
mine is the coloured one. Akem's is the cards.

The exams
Our finals consist of 2 exams, alhamdulillah. Because the school didn't want to jumble all things together, so we did most of the difficult part during our 4th year (medicine and surgery - with all the very difficult OSCEs and written exams) and in the first part of our final year (psych, GP, ObsGynae, Paeds). Many thought that us UCD students seem to get the easy way out. well, maybe. but we have always thought that we all did the exact same thing like others, it's just much earlier in our 4th year. So it seems like these two exams is nothing serious but they are pretty much as scary. And me and Suha ended up in the first group to start on Tuesday and Wednesday. While all the other malaysians start theirs on Wednesday and Thursday.

"If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then,
is an empty desk a sign?"  - Albert Einstein.
i take comfort with this quote. this is always how it looks like when i study. :)

The Viva. 
Wednesday, 29th April 2014.
I remembered that i wasn't able to focus anymore when i read. So i decided to watch this video by Nouman Ali Khan in the morning of the exam. The video was called "Praying for Success" (linked).  It was a 30 minutes khutbah, so as i was prepping myself for the exam, i could only listen to the first 12 minutes of it. And the thing that got stuck in my head was: 

"ask Allah for what you need to get through it."

Which really does make sense. Cause we can ask for whatever that we wanted, but perhaps that wouldn't be the things that will help us get through any of the hurdles that we are facing. So i was the second group to be called for the Viva exam, and i remembered feeling quite calm as i was waiting for my turn outside the room. Another guy was sitting beside me. I wished him luck, and then i closed my eyes for a good minute, mumbling this Doa over and over;

"ya Allah, grant me with what i need, You're the All-Knower." 
And then i was called. Bismillah :)

magically that day we wore the exact same colour! :)
and that's the book for Viva.

The Long Case exam. 
30th April 2014
So for anyone outside the medical field, this exam is basically a session where you'd be sent to a random patient, and you'd spent 45 minutes with him/her, taking down their history (whatever that they came in with) and examine them and organize all these jumbled information that you have to present it to two consultant-examiners for 15-20 minutes. You'd present the patient and his/her case, and give your thoughts on what the diagnosis might be with your reasons, things that may have been (the differential diagnosis) and your short-term and long-term management for it. And they can then ask you whatever they want, either about the case or nothing related to it at all.

So as you can see, that's why medical students would usually be the ones who'd desperately ask for prayers when they are in exams. Cause almost everything can go wrong in only an hour of the exam. Your patient can be uncooperative, you may not even understand a word they are saying for their thick accent, you may know what's wrong with them but you could not remember anything about the disease or its management, you could have the world's most scary consultants staring down at your stupid answers, and you could even get tongue-tied in the middle of it all.

But when i went for my exam that morning, instead of my initial plan to go early and revise for cranial nerves exam (cause i was beginning to feel like i know nothing!), i went to the St Vincent's Hospital's surau, and spent my time with Allah s.w.t. I poured everything out; the nervousness, my jitters, and my hopes. it was a relief. it's like i was letting go of my every worries; to leave the rest to Allah's Will. So after that i went straight to the hall that we have to wait in, and being Mr Ariff's daughter, i was certainly in the first group to start the exam straight away. So when i went to my patient, the most important thing that i bring in with me was my trust in Allah. For i have done my part, my revisions, my prayers, and now it's His Plans that i should believe in.


Mine was quite a straight-forward case except for the fact that i can't examine her stoma. But Allah helped me through it. And I was the first one to finish the exam at 9:15am, coming back to an empty hall. Subhanallah, Alhamdulillah, Allahuakbar.

right after i finished my Long Case. my expression is disproportionate to the agony i felt.

D-day: Doctor Day. 
1st May 2014
So both me and Suha was quite free that morning, while the rest of the Malaysians are heading for their long case exams. We had our good rest after our jitters, and like we planned, we walked for 40-minutes to Clonskeagh Mosque for the morning. We spent our time there, and i was reminded of my first long case exam in my Baby Res year (3rd year). Back then, I finished a day earlier, so i went to Clonskeagh Mosque for a 'date'. 2 years later and I am here for the same reason again, but with a partner this time. :)

While at the mosque, a lady who was reciting the Quran since we arrived suddenly came up to us, she wanted to do her tasmi'. And she recited 2.5 pages of the Quran that she memorized this morning, MasyaAllah. So we asked her a bit on how she does it; she said it's been 4 years now. Her son is already a Hafiz at the age of 14. And she said to do it a page a time, especially after Fajr prayer. And she asked me a question; "are you married? -i shake my head obviously- well then, you have a lot of time to do it." Huhu, insyaAllah.


We went back home, and by this time everyone have finished their exam. So basically what we were told was that if we failed any of the two exams, we will get "the email" that will tell us to come and redo the long case exam the next day. So that was what we were dreading. The promised email would come out at 6pm. So after our Zuhr prayer, we were in our telekung, and we were all reciting al-Quran, calming down our nerves. We wanted to revise a bit in case the inevitable happen but we couldn't focus. In the end at about 4pm, the jitters was starting to come in. Finally ika and Ecah came to join me and Suha in my room. We all talked about our cases, reassuring one another of all the wrong things we did as well as the wrong answers that we have blurted out. And then suddenly Pika came to the room with this ghastly look and said: "the email is out". And it was only 5pm.

And everything went by so fast. We all were checking our phones and after confirming that everyone passed all of us hugged each other and we were all crying. We did our sujud syukur and went to call our family as it was still 12 a.m. in Malaysia. And the rest, was history.

with suha at Clonskeagh.
and that was us skyping after the result.
*mata bengkak nangis semua*


Looking back, so much have happened. And it has been a roller-coaster ride through it all. Suffice to say that I will cherish every moment that I have been through. We are all happy, alhamdulillah. But that night, after prayers, we all make du'a together for our past, our present, and our future;

For the desperation that we felt all the while, 
which had brought us down to our knees,
forehead down in sujud, sobbing into our prayers, 
seeking for none other but Allah's help; 
We prayed that that feeling will last, 
in our time of happiness and sadness.

For the new amanah that we have now as Doctors, 
we prayed that we will keep our promises that we say every so often;
That we wanted to be doctors not just to heal the bodies,
But to heal the souls, with Allah's help and by Allah's Will.
and to be doctors for the ummah and not just for ourselves,
carrying the responsibility of amar makruf nahi munkar with the trust.

For the last 5 years of being a medical student,
With all the lonesome rides, the agonies and the emotional turmoils,
The patients that we have seen and learn from;
The books that we have read, and the time we spent,
All the hard work as well as any of the lagha (forgetful)  moments;
We prayed that Allah forgive us for all the wrong-doings,
and accepted these 5 years as part of our amal ibadah. InsyaAllah.

Aamiin ya Rabb.
If anyone is still reading this post, then i hoped you'd say Aamiin for this doa.
It has been, a great climb.
Alhamdulillah, wa astaghfirullah.

That's it for my rants this time.
Thank You, ya Rabb. 
I can never thank You enough.

Yours truly,
Dr Izyan Ariff
University College Dublin

always am and always will be, another servant of Allah s.w.t. :)

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