2018.

How Social Media broke me.

Where friendships were based on the number of followers, likes and who made it on each other’s ‘ social media.

No one will admit to it. It’s too embarrassing, one said.

That’s the only way to show the world that they belong and to themselves for achieving their own sense of belonging.

For some, that sense of belonging turns to a social dependency. You depend on this circle for support, for constant sanity rants and invitations. And the opposite effects of them can be bitter.

Yasmin Mogahed’s words can’t be more apt. Below was an excerpt of her article. I don’t blame anyone but myself for these feelings that I had. I’ve been debating this all year to detoxify myself from social media, people and the world. I gave in to my worldly Nafs too soon every time.

“Social Media strengthens another dangerous focus: the focus on other people, what they’re doing, what they like. What they think of me. Facebook feeds the preoccupation with others’ assessment of me. Soon, I enter the orbit of the creation. Inside that orbit, my definitions, my pain, my happiness, my self-worth, my success and my failure is determined by the creation. When I live in that orbit, I rise and fall with the creation. When the people are happy with me, I’m up. When they’re not, I fall. Where I stand is defined by people. I’m like a prisoner because I have given up the keys to my happiness, sadness, fulfillment, and disappointment to the people to hold.

In a profound hadith (Prophetic teaching), a man came to the Prophet ﷺ and said: “O Messenger of God, direct me to an act, which if I do, God will love me and people will love me.” He ﷺ said: “Detach yourself from the world, and God will love you. Detach yourself from what is with the people, and the people will love you.”  [Ibn Majah]

Ironically, the less we chase after the approval and love of the people, the more we gain it. The less needy we are of others, the more people are drawn to us and seek our company. This hadith teaches us a profound Truth. Only by breaking out of the orbit of the creation, can we succeed with both God and people.”

One of my goals and priorities this year is this exactly. Part of my detoxification and to declutter my life, from these worldly Nafs and the creations.

As the three of us lay here on our bed laughing counting down to New Years and Ayden’s bedtime. Here’s wishing everyone  a blessed and less social media frenzy 2018!

xoxo

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7 minutes

Wednesday; Heart stopped for a total of 7minutes before she was revived by CPR.My heart sank.

3 days prior; she was rushed to the hospital and no one knew what she had was more serious than her asthmatic episodes. Her heart was weak. Mum was placed in the ICU straightaway. To be exact Ward 28; Coronary Care Unit.

Honestly, I thank god that her relapse happened when she was in the hospital. If she was at home, just like the doctor said; she won’t survived.

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The family wasn’t informed about her near death experience until the following morning which angered all of us. But what’s done is done. She survived.

I was at lunch then without my phone when messages flooding in. Just reached my desk when The husband called to ask me to read my whatsapp messages.

I knew something wasn’t right. I cried reading each line of the text and my fingers automatically scoured for flights on Skyscanner’s website. It was so emotionally painful. I tried so hard to focus, getting the right flights and the correct names on the booking. I could even control my tears anymore. Booked flights, Called husband to confirm my plans of returning home, run to my Manager looking like a mess that I needed to go back to Singapore urgently. I don’t know when I’ll be back.

The husband decided to fly home with me knowing that I will be a further wreck and with Ayden tagging along with us . He’s afraid I’m just going to crumble. I can’t thank him enough to do this for me even when his job circumstance was tight.

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said in one of His hadiths:

“Three supplications are answered without doubt. The supplication of the oppressed, the supplication of the traveler and the supplication of the parents for his children.” (Tirmidhi)

The whole time on the flight, I kept praying and Dhikr. Of course, Ayden had to be excited on this flight and refused to sleep!

As soon as we landed, we rushed back home. It feels so good to be home despite it being hot and humid. I was tossing and turning, I couldn’t sleep. I just couldn’t wait till the morning comes so that I can visit Mum. 9am arrives so much slower than I anticipated.

I had all these emotions in me, words that I wanna say when I see her. As soon as the ICU door swung open, I walked in so nervously. My heart literally dropped to see how thin she has become, her jawline was more defined as compared to 3 months ago and she looked so frail with the machine hooked up to her heart. The moment I kissed her hand, she was surprised and slightly unhappy that I came back. Waste of money she said. I had to. My mum hates when bad news of her reached me. All the time. She knew I will always drop it all and returned. Usually, She will use all her might to stop me. This time she failed.

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Our routine has been hospital-home all day. The husband and I agreed that it was just something about hospitals, maybe the vibe; it makes us all very tired and depressed even though we stayed for a while. Because it’s an ICU as well, Ayden wasn’t allowed to be in the ward. It helps to have the husband around.

But then Sunday came, his flight home was due that night. We were contemplating to send Ayden home with the husband while I stayed. It doesn’t help that Ayden was extra clingy since the moment we landed. And he hardly wants the husband which is not normal. Maybe he sense I was in distress? God knows. Since mum’s bypass surgery keeps getting delayed, I wasn’t sure when I’ll be back. It’s gonna be a nightmare putting him to sleep on nights that I’m not around. And so Ayden stayed with me.

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Even when we said our goodbyes, Ayden just ran off and not interested in saying goodbyes to his Baba. If this is in Melbourne, he would cry his heart out; wanting to follow him.

What this means was; we had to organise a carer for Ayden. We had so much helpful hands who are willing to sacrifice for us. I called all the childcare centres around the area and near the hospital that offers Emergency Care (I know right! I only found out they had such service through the Singapore Childcare Site!). We found one! The last one on the list of centres! We kept reviewing our list of our options. For the distance and convenience, we chose to send him to childcare.

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Putting Ayden in Childcare was the hardest decision we had to make in order for me to be able to care for mum. It wasnt the kind of first day of school experience we want to witness as parents and even for Ayden to go through. We did what we had to do and to trust my own maternal instincts. Our typical daily routine is Home-Childcare-Hospital -Childcare-Hospital-Home every weekday. It was exhausting I must admit.

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Thank you to all the staff at Genesis Childcare who very much love and nurture Ayden while he was there and who was willing to take in emergency cases like us.

Finally, after a week, Mum was wheeled in for her Bypass Surgery. It was a 6 hours operation. She was wheeled in at 2pm and got out at 9pm. I took the time to visit the husband’s grandma and by the time we got home it was already close to 10pm with a cranky toddler of course!

Dad and the rest of the siblings went to the hospital to catch a glimpse of her after the Operation. I wish I did, but Ayden was just being too difficult we had to stay home and put him to sleep.

The next morning after dropping off Ayden at the Childcare, I rushed to the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit (CTICU). the Sister told me to prepare myself as the current view of mum’s well-being is quite heartbreaking. Don’t get me wrong, everything went well with the bypass even with a few hiccups due to internal bleeding, even in the doctor’s exact words “MasyaAllah your mother is such a challenge and I love it!”, seeing the amount of tubes on her, is very much overwhelming.

The first day was ok, got myself together, keep talking to her, fed her, silently cried at the side of the bed when she took her naps and trying super hard to keep it positive.

But at the end of the second day post surgery, things get a lil bit too emotional. I knew it must be stressful for her to hear my uncontrollable sobs while she were lying in ICU with so much tubes and wires from head to toe! I was coming in to just kiss her hand and forehead to tell her that we’re heading home and we shall see her the next day. And It just happened as I took her hand, I broke down. I guess I’ve been holding it in since I landed just to be strong for her but my walls crumble and I finally got my emotions out. She kept saying to pray for her health. I just kept crying and telling her that she had to be strong and recover. Not recommended to let your emotions got hold of you in-front of someone who is in a very vulnerable position.

Gradually, Mum got posted to a normal ward, daily we try to talk to her although the drugs in her system caused her to hallucinate (this literally break hearts!) and having nightmares. We try to refresh her memory daily asking her the date and time, perform her exercises with her and encourage her to finish her food. I am immensely proud of her. She has been such a strong, independent woman. You can tell she’s trying so hard to be discharged. Trying a lil harder during her rehabilitation sessions, finishing up her food, try to be more active in the day with less naps and interact much more with people around her. Amidst all these, with her limited vision, made it much harder for her to move around or interact but she persevered on.

I am thankful that our whole family is such a close knit. Supporting and be a team in any given situations. Mum is currently discharged. She’s eating so well and happy to be in her own home. Alhamdulillah. Life being away from home, hard.

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That 7mins of unconsciousness and no heartbeat feels like forever. I never ever want to lose you again.

PS: It was also my first time to see my dad teared. It puts me in tears each time I recalled this event.

xoxo

Driving… Finally!

Yay! So finally got the courage to contact the local driving school and bought a package for myself! Hoping that I could score my license before end of the year!

My true blue Aussie driving instructor took me by surprise with words like a**h*** and d***h*** every now then. But now I’m used to it.

This is definitely a big thing for me! Hoping I could ace them quickly but reality is I’m scared shitless in the driver’s seat!

Wish me luck!

And Allah is the best of planners

Her Facebook post got me to tears, I’ve never been in her shoes but I am sure I will be a wreckage. I was literally sobbing hard while trying to put Ayden to sleep. Yet another night of meltdown, another round of fight. The battles we are facing with this lil one. His bedtime, that I will leave it to another story another day. But her post made me realise…

Every phase of our lives has been planned out, the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful events were laid right in front of our eyes. Despite the challenges, we will always hold on to a thread called Hope. Hope that things will get better, Hope that our lives will improve, Hope that we will receive what we have been praying for, Hope that we will be protected from tragedies. But sometimes that thread of Hope is there to make or break you.

Make you to give you the strength to overcome the barriers, the ability to trust him that his plans are better than your dreams and the capacity to see the positive outcome of the situation. On the other hand, Hopes can break you into blinding your mind that you are in a much worst situation than what you are in, weakens your soul and crumble your faith. That part is the worst crater to fall into. I call it a crater because in the long haul; like the Volcano; you are unstable, emotional and you will accumulate all these anger awaiting to erupt. Insecurities began to sink in and in due course, you will start to become a pessimist. Been there and done that.

People always say look at the bright side of life. Always be grateful. Always look at the Positives. Once you blabber about your fate or be sad, people start to attack you, provoke you saying; you are not grateful enough. You don’t trust God enough. You don’t count your blessings enough. Enough said, all they are saying is “YOU ARE UNGRATEFUL!” Really Sad. Was talking to a friend the other night about Positivity, On some days its just hard to lift your head and smile to the world. In all honesty, I personally think it is okay to cry sometimes. It’s ok to have those cloudy days. Although you and I know some days you need to create your own sunshine but if you don’t, I think it’s perfectly ok.

I learnt during my transition to Motherhood how important it was to Tawakkal and Redha. We are in God’s eyes. He is the one that starts and ends our struggles. For you know, that best things are coming. It may not be now but it will be sooner than you think. Bigger than you think and the best it will ever be.

Indeed, the only way I breathe knowing that verily, with hardship come ease–and like all things of this world–this too shall pass. Love this excerpt from Yasmin Mogahed.

xoxo

This is for the people that matters ❤️

Finally sitting here and enjoying my view of Ayden napping. Sometimes it’s just so hard to take a breather when you have a child that needs constant attention due to his phase of separation anxiety these days, it gets… wait for it…


Yes and someone is up!

(2 hours later..) 🕦

Here I am continuing this entry. In between the time Ayden woke up, he had his playtime yet still fussy, we ended up in a meltdown to get him to bed early. In the end, we both slept! This is our never ending dramas together EVERYDAY. Ayden and I! Tonight Mum 1 Ayden 0. Lucky night.

So dear friends, I’ve developed mind-texting-reply syndrome since the beginning of motherhood now. You know when I received a text and in my mind I replied your text but in reality I did not. And on occasions when I browse my messages and realised that “GOSH I DIDNT REPLY HIS/HER TEXT AND ITS BEEN TWO WEEKS!” Sorry Filzah 😫 the list goes on..  This has been happening a lot lately and I deeply apologise 😔 it was never intentional! It’s not like I have a lot on my mind, only God knows why?

Impromptu plans are always the best! Back in the day prior to February 2016, We used to call/text each other up and meet up in the next hour or later in the day for whatevs. I sincerely DO miss them days. Now it seems like impromptu plans needs to take place the week before. When I received texts like these ; “Hey lets meet up for dinner in the city tonight!” We have all these different scenarios unfolding in our heads, ‘Is there enough time to come home from work; get Ayden ready and pack his stuff? What’s the weather going to be like? How do we have to dress Ayden? Naptime issues? Things to pack? Carrier VS Pram? How’s parking like at the venue? Is it far for us to walk hence need the pram? On most occasions, we managed it pretty well. But on some days, we struggle to get out of the door just because. So my friends, if there are days that we couldn’t make it to your invite, please accept our apologies.

Sometimes I get carried away talking about motherhood, diaper change struggles and whatnots. I just can’t help it. Deep down please do know that I still get excited talking about Justin Bieber concert that’s happening next year, still go crazy over Zac Efron and Channing Tatum and wish that I am Chrissy Teigen on some days! So these will soon pass, please don’t hesitate to ask me out or include me in your convos and invites, I still crave for my girly time. Big time!

Motherhood may have taken over my life like a storm but do know I am still the same person as I am before. I will still be there for you the best I can, be it a listener or a friend to talk to. Things maybe a tad different that I tend to tow Ayden everywhere with me now but I will still try to meet you as much as I can. I deserve a lil bit of sanity too!

So for whatever shortcomings I have thus far, please forgive me!

xoxo

Carpe Librum Singapore

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A quick shoutout to Carpe Librum Singapore! I am so proud of my good and close friend, Azura and my junior in Secondary School, Huda for creating a wonderful business set up for their love of books and reading.

Who is Carpe Librum?

They specialise in curating a bi-monthly book subscription box called the “Librum Box”.

The Librum Box is a thematic book box that consist of 1 book and 4 or 5 other book inspired merchandise.

The book is picked carefully based on the chosen theme and is a current bestseller, new release or a special edition of an all-time favorite title.
The box is curated by the owners, Azura & Huda or a special guest curator.
Each box is retailing at $35 (inclusive of personal delivery to your doorstep).

I reckon it’s a great idea! For all you avid readers out there or running out of gift ideas? Why not gift a friend a Librum Box. Well, who doesn’t love surprises in the mail?
Biased. Not at all.

Check out the July/Aug librum box, can you spot the local twist! Its great especially in conjunction with Singapore National Day just passed! I would have subscribed if i was in Singapore!

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If you are interested in their Librum box and wish to be on our mailing list, simply drop them an email at carpelibrum.sg@gmail.com or follow them on Facebook and Instagram to find out more!

Here’s a link of a fellow blogger and avid reader unboxing the Librum Box!