Ramadan already!

What! 3 weeks to Ramadan!

Omg How the time flies! This year has been such an optimistic year! I’m actually surprised at myself and what I’ve achieved in the state of my overall well being. It was my demons that I’m fighting and issues I’m admitting.

January started off with two deaths in the family. It was quite a shock and at the same time, it draws me closer to my own. Truth to be told, deaths are inevitable, no warnings or signs. When it comes, you have to Redha and accept what comes may; for Allah has better plans for all of us. Let’s spend more time with our families. Only time will tell when it happens, in the meantime make more memories and embrace all the moments.

In the past four months, I’ve gone through 3 suicide deaths of known acquaintances. It took everyone by surprise. You’ve met, have coffee dates and have deep meaningful convos. At the end of the day, everyone tried their best at both ends. Family and friends. It’s really devastating to see the aftermath and how it takes a toll on their families. You can only pray. Pray harder for them.

I think that for every decision you make, that’s what makes you, you. It’s not for anyone else. All I can say from the past few months, it taught me that my happiness comes first. It may sound selfish to some, but it is actually important to prioritise the state of your overall well-being amongst everything else. That’s your core.

I don’t blame anyone or spoke ill of anybody in this course. It was me, my issues. I have this issue of expecting the same treatment I gave to another, some said I expect too much. It was something that I thought was given when you give. Indeed, I learnt. Now I learnt not to expect anything and it’s quite an eye opener. The sooner you let go and learnt, the faster you run in happiness!

It was my biggest issue to hold on to relationships really tightly, too dependent on some which I should not. Again, that was indeed my issue and not anyone’s. I learnt it the hard way. So, I decided to take myself out of the equations,and shift my focus on my own life, my own family. Indeed, it’s been such a great learning journey discovering myself and you learn a thing or two new every time. (Just like how I realised Ayden seemed to enjoy rice and Kangkong Belachan!)

Moving forward, I’m living and going with the flow, with the people who comes in and stay, with the people who chose to leave, with the people who let you be the best of you.

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Heavy.

It was Summer of 2017 when this song lingers through me. You see I am more of a lyrical person. I tend to decipher the meanings of songs through lyrics as compared to others who are more interested on the notes of the song. Like my husband for example.

A song that spoke to me at my lowest. Its funny how people telling me about how emotional or sensitive one (others) can be. And whenever that happens, I felt like a piercing through my heart each time. Like I know they don’t know, but I know some may call ME the same! But I totally get it.

There are days that I struggle to fight my own demons. There are days when I lay prostrating before Allah, and my tears, they just kept falling. There are days where questions like “Am I good enough for anyone?” filled my head.

I’ve had my share of suicide incidents that happen to friends, a friend of a friend. It’s never easy. One minute they are laughing, and the next minute, they just took their life. And its not for us to judge. Not for us to think “oh what a waste!” We can never feel how they feel at that time, how heavy their heart must be before taking that final step.

Heavy

I don’t like my mind right now
Stacking up problems that are so unnecessary
Wish that I could slow things down
I wanna let go but there’s comfort in the panic

And I drive myself crazy
Thinking everything’s about me
Yeah, I drive myself crazy

‘Cause I can’t escape the gravity
I’m holding on
Why is everything so heavy?
Holding on, So much more than I can carry
I keep dragging around what’s bringing me down
If I just let go, I’d be set free

Holding on, Why is everything so heavy?

You say that I’m paranoid
It’s not like I make the choice
To let my mind stay so fucking messy
I know I’m not the center of the universe

Baggage

Before you go ahead and bitch about someone else ;

“oh yea, he’s always emotional! Can’t be bothered with people like that!”

“Oh yea, she’s like that. I don’t need the negativity”

“She’s always sensitive!”

“He’s such a reserved individual! Whatever…”

The least you can do is reach out and ask the person “Are you ok?” Nine out of Ten, you’ll be surprise with the replies you get. No one wants to be emotional, if they have a choice, no one wants to be the sensitive one anyways. Always look at the bigger picture.

Everyone have their own baggage. Who are we to judge what anyone is going or have gone through. Before you pass such baseless remarks to bitch about, at least be the wiser person and a caring friend to question about the bigger picture here or if you’re only considered yourself as an acquaintance, shut the fuck up!

Family

I was brought up in a way where family comes first. In anything and everything.

It wasn’t until I moved to Melbourne that my sibling ties were so much closer than before. I guess our decade gap makes it hard growing up. They were teenagers when I was still in my toddlerhood. It was like being too cool to hang out with your baby sister.

With my parents, whenever we have any family events, you better clear your plans for the day. My dad had only started asking if we had plans for the day after we have our own families.

To think back, I think that’s why I’m such a homebody; very much family oriented. I love doing something with the whole family. Get a lil excited for family events or trips.

If I could I would fly back now. But this girl who’s now a mum and wife, has priorities that needs to be settled. Till December then.

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

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