Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Forgiven, not forgotten

Everytime I went pass this road, the memory of the olden days came back to my head and made me feel as if I missed something. This used to be the way home. This used to lead me to my sanctuary. A place where I grew up and gathered all the joyful and sadness moments of my teenage years. This used to be my family house in Port Dickson.

I was born in Kajang, but raised in Port Dickson. As far as I know, on my father's side, we do not have any relatives living close to us, except for my uncle who came all the way from Penang with his family to start a living here. But things aren't always nice to look at. Sometimes when envy and selfishness filled our heart, we could turn into monsters without feelings. No mercy. I don't wish to relate here what happened about more than 20 years ago when I was still a teenager. But sufficient to mention here that the feud between both family (or more accurately, the fight between brothers --> my father and my uncle) was so powerful, its impact was disastrous. It torn both family apart and resulted in as if we were living amongst strangers. They were my close relatives. We were supposed to look after each other and to protect every family members from outside danger. But what happened was the opposite. Anger, jealousy, envy and hatred for each other filled their lungs everyday, but none of these feelings were shown openly because my father was sick.

In 1997, on the day my father passed away, thruth revealed its painful colours of black and ashy grey. My mother was blamed for his death, accusations were thrown at her face. My siblings were also treated badly. I couldn't believe my sister when she said our cousin threatened to kill her one day. The other also warned he will burn my family alive...For God's sake, what has got into their heads?

Because warnings after warnings, threats after threats kept flooding my family, we decided to move out from Port Dickson and seek for new place we could call home. Soon my brothers started to become disoriented. They skipped school and spent a lot of time trying to figure out what they've lost and became scattered everywhere. My sisters also quit schools to search for jobs, to earn for a living. My mother started becoming dreamy, she used to talk alone, sometimes cried quietly and sometimes just let herself lost in deep trance.

I cried when my sister told me of these nightmares. I was not there when such bad situations befallen them. I was in the UK, struggling hard to finish my degree. I wish I could turn back time so that I could protect my family, especially my mother, from these monsters.

The year when I was expecting my first child, I heard the news that my uncle passed away. That was 2 years after the loss of my father. I went to visit my uncle's grave which is very much close to my father's. For as long as I can remember, I didn't do what people would normally do at the grave, reciting surahs and doas for the demised ones. I was standing straight and staring blankly at the tombstone. The only thing uttered from my mouth was...

"I will never forgive you!"

It was painful to have said that but that's the fact.

This year, 2009, marked the 12th years I lost my father. During the last visit to his grave, I felt calm and peaceful. I have managed to compose my emotions nicely. Probably because of all the tests God had given me earlier during the year, I am much stronger now. (How fragile was I all this while?). As I passed the grave of my uncle on the way back, I stopped and stood still and stared again at his grave. For how long I was in that position, I didn't know, but in my heart, I pity him for what I have vowed 10 years ago here at the very same spot. How was he doing in there? Was he tortured badly for what he had sinned? What if we really really will never forgive him forever?

I bent down and touched the tombstone in front of me.

"O Allah, today I open my heart willingly and forgive this man for all his wrongdoing towards my family. I pray you spare some mercy on him and let him rest in peace now".

Looking back at what happened to my family, we would have been much happier in life had he not done what he had done. Damages, though now repaired and concealed, took time to be accepted. Regrets remain, but what is past, is past. There's nothing we can do about it now.

Dear PakNgah, you're now forgiven, but will never be forgotten. May Allah bless your soul and protect you from the fire of hell. Amin.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

I cherish these moments....

The second half of the year came with lots of disasters left alongside its path. I have been tested one so many times in life, but I have to admit what came to me started June have almost turned my life upside down.

JUNE - I was conveyed with a sad news that my PhD proposal was not doable. After 2 whole years struggling to dig out the root cause and provide study justification, the verdict was simple - abandon the case study.....I tried to cry, but could not make the tears flow down my cheek. I tried to smile a bit in hope it could do me some good, but that was hopeless too. As a result, at the end of the day, I just stared blankly at the wall. My mind was elsewhere I could not identify the place.

Later the same day I received a call. My husband was involved in an accident. He was riding his motorbike when suddenly a car overtook him carelessly and hit him at the front tyre. According to him, suddenly he was "flying" and then turned an acrobatic performing "somersault" on the road, trying to protect himself when the bike crashed to the ground. The news stopped my breath for several times. As I rushed home, I kept praying that there's no serious injury involved. By the time I arrived, he was watching TV, his hands and legs bandaged, some parts were swollen and reflected darker skin tone. I felt his body trembling when I touched him. He tried to smile but it looked awful. That night he mumbled something in his sleep. He was in trauma.

It took me two weeks to attend to his needs and dress his wounds every morning and night. I did not touch my journals and research was at a dead end. I have to forget all about study for now. My husband is my priority.

JULY - The heavy rain accompanied with lightnings and thunders brought another bad episode in my life. One of the strikes hit the switch board of the automatic gate, damaging the whole thing and jamming the gate. Not only that, my LAN connector at the laptop was also hit that it is now no longer working. And finally, when the cold days of heavy rain finally came to an end and the sun shone to its brightest, we were awfully disappointed to find out that the air-conditioning unit in the master bedroom was also affected by the lightning and was not functioning. Gosh! What else could be worse than this?

- AUGUST - One morning, a call came in from my brother-in-law. He conveyed to me the news of my sister who has been admitted into Subang Jaya Medical Centre (SJMC) due to severe pain in the stomach. Later, the result came from the doctors confirmed that she has some kind of a tumor growing so big in her intestine and that it had 'exploded' and bled badly. The next day, she underwent an operation to remove the tumor. The next two weeks I spent my time visiting her at the ward and trying to cheer her up a bit. She was shocked with the news that she has cancer and did nothing but cried and cried and cried. My heart was torn in two seeing her in such condition. I want her well again, be happy with her family and continue her life as usual. We kept looking for other treatment options that could cure the cancer and avoid chemotherapy sessions. Finally, the result from another test by SJMC came to us as good news - she is free from cancer. Alhamdulillah! O Allah! You are the Almighty! I know You listen to our prayers. Thank you!

- SEPTEMBER - Finally, the fasting month of Ramadhan visited us again this year as has been the case every year. I have always been looking forward for Ramadhan to come. Anxiously. Waiting for the very moment to meet and greet someone I really miss so much. This is the time I when I could cry, I could spill out all my feelings, be it happy or sad, I could feel as if all my prayers all this while are being heard, this is the time when I fully surrender my soul to The Creator and ask for forgiveness for my sins....

I am so grateful I am still given the chance to cherish the fasting month of Ramadhan this year...

Thus, my family and I spent each day peacefully, the love we have for each other bound us closer that there's a tie that is so strong nothing could break it. I was happy. Nothing could explain my happiness at this moment. At dawn we ate shahur together, we fasted during the day and carried out our tasks dutifully and gathered around the table again at dusk to break fast together. We went to the mosque for Maghrib and Isya' jama'ah, then continued with tarawikh and tadarus until midnight. I feel so peaceful with the warmth of love growing and surrounding the family....

But then again Allah wanted to test our patient and faith in Him. On the 13th day of Ramadhan, I have to rush my husband to the hospital after shahur after he complained of severe stomachache and crumpled to the floor. He has ureteric and kidney stones (batu karang di salur kencing & buah pinggang)!! A computerised tomography (CT) scan at Kajang Specialist Hospital (KPJ) confirmed this. Saying so, he was admitted into the hospital for almost (plus/minus) 2 harrowing weeks. It caused him severe pain and resulted in blood in urine.

In my life, this is the first time I saw my husband cried and my heart broke everytime he did so. On the day he was scheduled for operation to remove the stones endoscopically, I made a silent prayer to God, seeking strength and security. Please bring back my husband to me. I love him dearly. I am not ready to be departed from him. At least not just yet. I may sound childish but such situation like this exposed the fear in me...

- OCTOBER - Families have been the strong support for his fight to recover from such mischief, especially my parents-in-law who have patiently waited by his side everyday and watched him recover. I know my husband as a very determined person. He has strong will to survive. Two days before Eid Mubarak celebration, he walked out of the hospital, headed for home, to his family, a smile of relief in his face. The children were eager to see their father after a long time he has been missing from home. Even our maid cried when she saw him. This would be the sweetest Eid Mubarak celebration for me.

Dear Allah! Nothing could be said to express my gratitude to You for reuniting my family. I thank you for all the joyous moments in life. I also thank You for teaching me to endure all the pain with an open heart and be patient. Syukur alhamdulillah. Eid Mubarak this year is a memorable one.

... I cherish these moments in life....


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