Monday, June 30, 2008

When My Mind Speaks

My favourite breakfast is in the menu today:

A banana.
Two slices of apricot raisin wheatgerm Toast'em.
A mug of hot chocolate.

Now, to dust or not to dust. That is the question. I just feel like taking a nap. Upon waking up, I shall read a book over a glass of apple juice.

My colleague at work, whose estimated due date is supposed to be slightly later than mine, has given birth last week. Apparently, people have been trying to reach me, to no avail. I am glad to inform you that I have a new telephone. Nevertheless, I hope to find the charger to the old telephone. It is not available in the market anymore.

Unfortunately, I have lost the contact details of family and friends when my computer crashed right before I misplaced my telephone charger. The silver lining is, I have learned to use Plaxo.

I obviously let my mind speaks in this particular post, eh. Apart from the matters above, I also think of this and that. Oh, the house is dusty!

In My Boots

I saw my nephew witnessing his friend being interviewed by ASP+. When I was an undergraduate, a day such as this called for doses of Milo O and Tosai Telur at Alif. At times, Ayub.

On such a day, if my five brothers and I happened to be in Rembau, we, together with our father, would camp in front of the television. Eyes glued to the match, we then took turns to reach into a big plate of Cucur Ikan Bilis, which the mother prepared just because she could not stand our loudness.
This match is dedicated to an avid Germany fan in the family, Cimi.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Reach

My father, Kamal, and I now respectively own similar mobile telephones. Even if I misplace my charger, I can borrow either my father's or Kamal's.

I am reachable again.
My deepest condolences to the family and friends of the Casa C-212 crash victims. The Singaporean was Kamal's colleague at a branch of the company he is working with. So were two unmentioned Indonesian men. One of them accompanied Kamal to a place in Jakarta where he got a batik top for me.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Life is About Celebrations

Kamal and I love to celebrate life. Apart from June 17, which is officially our wedding anniversary, we also celebrate June 18, 2005, the Saturday the main ceremony was held. Thus a special something for us every third Saturday within the month of June.

Three years ago, Kamal and I put on the wedding shoes, to walk daintily towards the dais. Last Saturday, three years later, Kamal walked slowly beside me as I was experiencing pelvic pain due to the pregnancy. More celebrations to come our way.

--<-@

Monday, June 23, 2008

Wind Orchestra Finale 2008

The secondary school I attended from 1994 to 1998, Sekolah Seri Puteri, won the Wind Orchestra Finale 2008 for Fully Residential Schools on June 21, 2008. Yet, here I am, having only a photo of the Kolej Melayu Kuala Kangsar ensemble. No thanks to an old boy who monopolised the camera. He rationalised later that he failed to shoot a photo of the winning school because he was mesmerised by the performance.

Not that I minded as I was there mainly to enjoy the performances by the finalists. Aside from Sekolah Seri Puteri and Kolej Melayu Kuala Kangsar, there were Sekolah Sultan Alam Shah, Sekolah Menengah Sains Raja Tun Azlan Shah, and Kolej Tunku Kurshiah. Little C even danced throughout the competition.

I actually dreamed that the Sekolah Seri Puteri ensemble has changed to a new, better apparel as compared to the previous year's, which was simply hideous. Kamal was amused with the accuracy of that particular dream. It would be lovely to dream that I won RM1 billion instead.

The Day

The engagement of Madir and Mas.

Anis is Four

Anis' fourth birthday was celebrated at McDonald's Ayer Keroh.

The service by the crew was beyond bad, but the birthday celebrant compensated for it by being a gracious host, greeting guests from table to table and thanking each of them at the exit for their presence and presents. Without being told to do so.

Pak Lang and Mak Lang wish Little C has your charm, darling. Oh, we are pleased that you love the jigsaw puzzle book. You even asked for more books for your next birthdays. Hugs and kisses from us, always.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Contact

Little C, what are you seeing from the inside?

I seek for the truth and so far, I found myself in your daddy. So has he.

We watched Contact to end the celebration of our wedding Saturday within the month of June.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Must Lust

Oh, I have to stop writing because the must-have next meal has morphed into a lust-do.

Macam-macam Chech

My mother is on the way to Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, accompanied by my father. They would visit me, if the queue at the pharmacy is not as long as usual. Apparently, the chance of them to be in Bandar Baru Bangi, even for a brief visit, is extremely thin. In case of a miracle, I would love to have lunch with them.

I am thinking of Masak Lemak Cili Padi. Precisely, I am thinking of Telur Itik Masak Lemak Cili Padi tolo itik. Slightly crushed bilimbi in it would be a bonus.

My mother told me that the traditional way to cook the egg is by dipping a ladle of the aforementioned ingredient into the gravy until it hardens. I would love to know what is the best recipe book for Malay cuisine. One that does not only introduce the innumerable herbs and spices, but also specify each step towards a sumptuous home-cooked meal. Modern measurements alone does not help. I find conventional measurements more practical. The use of both modern and conventional measurements will be most helpful though.

I have tried the art of cooking. At times, when I was alone, I would prepare a meal according to my taste. So far, the meals are merely restricted to stir fried noodle, vegetable soup, and salads. Not to mention the petty sunny side up and scrambled egg. As for omelette, I have only prepared it in a small sized pan. Oh, Kamal is definitely a simple man.

Kamal and I share an ultimate dream thought. We wish to be able to cook for a large number of guests. Oh, no. Writing about food causes me to be famished. Excuse me while I go to the kitchen for a hassle-free banana.
An update at 12:29 p.m. My mother said that she will be here within half an hour. I have a lunch date with my parents and that is all that matters to me. Any menu is fine as long as I am being pampered by their love.

An(other) Awakening

I was awakened by a beautiful piano solo. Oh, Kamal was thoughtful to change from ASP+ to Opus after the Russia vs Sweden and Greece vs Spain matches. He also decreased the volume so the music would be a companion, rather than a disturbance. Little C gave a gesture of approval for the song selection. Not that he dislikes soccer as he also gave similar gesture when I watched the rerun of Euro 2008 matches during the day. Nevertheless, we prefer the serenity classical companion offers at early dawn. While I was a final year undergraduate with a car in Skudai, I would switch to 92.4 when I had the vehicle to myself.

I welcome anything calming. According to a blog I hopped to in search of patients' opinions of the service at the hospital Kamal and I have chosen to deliver Little C, Muslim women in labour are served with recorded recitation of Quranic verses there. Soothing to know. Must be more soothing to listen to.

My parents often advise me to incorporate more zikr in the daily life. Aside from adjusting to the possibility of Little C being awake for breastfeeding, one more reason to be thankful for a sleepless early dawn, which I am experiencing now, is the opportunity to absorb its ethereal quality. As the surrounding stands still, the sensitivity of my senses heightens to an aspiring level.

The senses, in their truest sense, are able to envision more distinctly. The vision then empowers the soul, and life becomes most meaningful. Gratification towards a meaningful existence further inspires me to incorporate more zikr in the daily life. Dear readers, this particular piece of writing shall serve as a reminder to none other than me, myself, and I.

The morning's food for thought:
"Facing facts is always empowering. Be aware that what you think, to a large extent, creates the emotions that you feel. See the link between your thinking and your emotions. Rather than being your thoughts and emotions, be the awareness behind them." 
Eckhart Tolle

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Three Seasons

June 17, 2005 to June 17, 2008, and counting.

Indeed, three is a magic number.

Monday, June 09, 2008

His First Smile

Friday, June 06, 2008

Clouds

The estimated due date is within three weeks. An aunt who recently visited my mother and I in Rembau commented that I appeared rosy. It must be the presence of the loved ones, in either physical or non-physical forms. In Kamal's case, his short yet sweet text messages gave me reasons to smile despite being extremely lethargic.

The pregnancy has been a joy, oh yes. The wonder of a person growing within me is indescribably enlightening. Nevertheless, I shall document here that I have been experiencing a bout of depression, caused by a series of past fertility treatments.

Pre-pregnancy, my husband and I were diagnosed with unexplained infertility. Being family oriented, we decided to seek medical assistance to conceive a child whom we could care for together. Six cycles of clomid and a round of preparation for Intra-Uterine Insemination were demanding enough for our hectic work schedules. In the meantime, we also prepared ourselves with the possibility of In-Vitro Fertilisation.

Clomid, as in any drug, had negative side effects, particularly emotionally, on me. Now, I still bear the psychological scars. As a mother-to-be's emotional health relates to both her and the child's physical health, with the worst being a preterm loss, I was advised to break myself free from stress-inducing matters.

I might be Miss Sunshine, but I somehow can't help from cloudy moments. What I could do in order to care for my emotional well-being is to let the negative energy out of my system. With this pregnancy, my physical and mental being has become most protective. Must be the challenge of having a successful conception in the past.

I eventually snapped when I tried to stretch myself a mere extra mile at work. At home, I intuitively retired to a passive role, which is not me at all. I exercised to improve the hormone circulation, but being subjected to bed rest because of the effects afterwards was traumatising. Oh, I simply felt empty not being able to be my old energetic self.

Then, my best support system, Kamal, has been too occupied with work that he had no choice but to pass the responsibility of caring for my well-being to my parents. I am thankful though that the serenity in Rembau has provided me the opportunity to reflect on my life so far. Yesterday, after days of self-reflection, I realised that the best support system was actually myself. The pregnancy might be sensitive, but my true-self is always strong. Therefore, after Maghrib, I fought the pressure and chanted zikr with all my being.

Not only I felt better, I was able to resolve a number of issues as well. One issue being the fragile state I am in that has rendered me helpless. Another is the unsorted leave application at work. There. All out of my system. Now, I shall document those sunny moments for the past 33 weeks.
By writing this, I have shed a light on what I am going through, but words can never define how it truly feels. Last week, a cousin cried while relating her experience of two failed aided conception procedures, with a close shave with cancer. There were tears in my eyes, too.

Was it empathy on my part? Almost. Nonetheless, there must be a personal side of us that have untold stories, not revealed for various good reasons. Therefore, there can't be a complete empathy. I have discussed this with my obstetrician once. I need to reveal the untold stories to her during the next session.