Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Promise of 2010

I'm just 2 days away from a whole new year. The day when our beautiful 3rd rock completes it's full circle around the sun.

Believe it or not, we have been together for 2 years and yet I have never celebrated the new year with my lovely boyfie. The first year he was unavailable under certain circumstances. *ahem* The second year, my parents did a barbecue and I had to be there and we weren't ready for him to meet my parents yet.

And now, we are coming into our 3rd year together. I have to say, 2009 was a good year for us. We (he) improved a lot and we learnt a lot from each other. Highlights of this year? London, of course. But the best part of '09? The few days before I left for London, we were on his bike and he was holding my hand with one of his free hands. Then he kissed it and turned to look at me and gave me this big smile.

I will always remember that. I think it was the best and most beautiful smile I have ever seen. Because it was so sincere and unexpected. I just didn't know how to respond to that so I gripped his hand tighter.

Other than love, friends has also become a great part of this year. I am always grateful for the fact that, wherever I go, I always have a good, dependable friend by my side. Ezzura was there for me in primary school and all the way through high school. Syaz, Naza, and Sai were my besties in matriculation. And now? Soleha is my closest friend and confidant.

Sure, out of all the sweetness and comfort friends provide, there will always be that sour spot when you think you won't make it through. Though all my friends has gone through these times with me, times when we don't really speak to each other or are mad at one another, I think a special thanks should go out to my best BFF ever.

I've always thought of making a post about her one day. About how we met and the childhood we spent together. How she's still a great friend to me now. But I didn't know how to get it all out without sounding oh-so-corny and with a hint of gay. Well, after all the laughter and tears we've shared together, all the long phone calls and texts before we discovered boys to entertain us, there were still times when we got so pissed at each other, we had screaming matches. And I'm sorry to say that one of these times happened in 2009.

I love you weh. And I'm really2 sorry for hurting you at any time. You're like the sister I never had and the best friend I'll always have. I'm amazed that you manage to forgive me every time we fight, while I pull a face and sulk. I'm sorry I'm not the strong one to apologize in the heat of the moment. But you are and I respect that. I hope every year will be good to you and no matter what happens, please remember that you can count on me to be there for you.

There. I told you it was going to be corny.

Ahem. *straight back, wipes tears away and pulls a straight face*

2010 holds many new beginnings for me. Graduation, getting a job, maybe renting a place of my own, and getting my first car. Bringing him to meet my parents, and then my sister's getting married in June. Then, at the end of 2010, he'll graduate.

I'm already so psyched for 2010. Nervous, excited, but most of all, anticipating with high hopes. Don't bother asking me what's my new year's resolutions. I never have one because you might as well call it "Things I'll never get done in 2010". But I do have one mission but it's got nothing to do with the excitement of a new year. This mission has been up and running since 29/12/09 and hopefully will be complete by 29/03/10.

Wish me luck!

I can't wait to watch the fireworks with him tomorrow. And I can't wait to unravel the future with him.

Happy new year everyone. May all your dreams and wishes come true. God bless you!

Monday, December 28, 2009

If you can no longer make me smile
If you can no longer make me laugh
If this happiness was meant to be our last
Then let me hold you for just a while.

Heartache is my best muse. And this just went through my head. Can't think of anything else to go with it, though. I haven't written poems in a really long time.

That Bursting, Bubbling, Boiling Feeling

We had a fight.

I'm not gonna say what it was about. But it was bad enough for him to take my helmet when I offered it to him and said I never want to see him again.

I am so mad right now, I could burst into flames. Like, literally just go up in flames. And if I do, I want him to be right next to me so he would catch fire too.

Fine, maybe I am such a spoilt, mengada girlfriend that I can't take any critic or the slightest mistake. And I hardly ever say I'm sorry. But I still do want to see him everyday. Text him all the time. Despite his imperfections and the fact that I get pissed at him all the time. But then I realized a few weeks back how he has changed.

No more wanting to see me everyday. No more texting me all the time. It's always me initiating anything.

I do not have a problem if he wants to start dating other people. Go ahead. But at least have the courtesy to tell me so I wouldn't get caught up in this whirlwind and get my emotions all wound up.


If you have someone else in mind, just tell me.

If you're sick of me, just tell me.

If the romance of being reunited after 2 months apart has worn off, just tell me.

And if you're embarassed to be seen with me, just effing tell me.

I haven't cried yet. I'm not a big crier. Even my mum said I hardly cried when I was a baby. But I do throw tantrums. So this is my tantrum.

I hate you right now. I want to get revenge on you and make you jealous. I want to hurt you the way you've hurt me. And then I want to see you torn apart and act like I don't care. I want to throw things at you and scream at you till your ears go deaf.

And then I'm going to make a life-sized doll of you so that I could do all these things to you and get away with it.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Life's a Bitch

I've got the long awaited results. And as I've expected, it wasn't as good as the previous one. Sure, I still got above 3.5 but now my graph's all messed up.

What graph, you ask?

Back when my mum was still teaching, she would have me help her out by plotting a graph of each student's exam performance. The graph was made up of all the exam marks of each individual student, according to subject, so you could see clearly if a student was improving or deteriorating. This led me to have a mental graph of my own performance in university.

Up till now, my graph has been a positive linear one. Which means that I am improving each sem, something that I was privately proud of because I am not trying to compete with my classmates. I only want to do better than before, because of that mental graph I have. But now, it's like the graph has shot straight up and then... one *poof* at the end where it falls.

This sucks. I hate to be the one to deteriorate.


And of course, my parents' reaction was just as I expected. Sure, they weren't mad or anything. But they weren't exceptionally proud like before either. They were like, "Oh." And then a pause. And then, "That's good." Too little, too late. I already know that they are disappointed. Even though my mum says she's still proud of me because I was chosen to go to London and my dad said my results was still in the A zone; but no, I know they are disappointed. They're just trying to console me and themselves with justification.

I have never been disappointed over my exam results. And I mean never. Even though there was that one time where I got 2.94. But at the time, the whole class failed and I was thanking my lucky stars that I was one of the four who passed.

And also, I think justice has not been served in some areas. I know that if you interview me and someone else over a certain subject, I would be able to answer far better and no, I'm not boasting because I know this is true. Maybe I wrote too much unnecessary stuff during the exam. Maybe my nerves got to me so much, my answers didn't make sense. And I know damn well that I didn't have time to re-check.

Maybe life is just unfair.

Fine, my mum's right. There's no use crying over spilled milk. And my dad says I can try again this semester. At that, I can manage nothing more than a a scoff because this semester is hard. And I mean the hardest ever. I've got research and management, both killer subjects that threaten to shoot me in the head. And then there's the whole business of doing up my resume and applying for a job.



I'm gonna go dye my hair now. Please let me be gorgeous after this so I can get over this sinking feeling.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Lessons on Living

As usual during the holidays, I am always hungry for a good book, because this is the only time I could read. I keep bugging my parents to buy me a new book, oblivious to the fact that the best books are just on the shelves of my own home. I actually bought 2 books this semester break, one of them being The 5 People You Meet in Heaven, by Mitch Albom. The book was good and stayed with me a day or two before I started to forget the message of the story. But then, it was good enough to make me want to read another book by Mitch Albom and I recalled seeing Tuesdays With Morrie on the shelf in the family hall. So I picked it up and started reading.

By the end of 3 days, the book moved me so much, I was actually crying. And I'm not one to cry over movies or songs, much less over story books. But the story was just so deep and meaningful, and Morrie is just such a great person that I cried for him, even though we would never ever know each other. God, if I knew him personally I would probably cry myself to death too.

The book is based on a true story, about an old college professor diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or better known as Lou Gehrig's disease. This is a disease that slowly eats up all the nerves in your body, leaving you paralyzed and "trapped" in your own body. Doctors predict a maximum of 5 years to live when diagnosed with ALS. I think Morrie lived up to two. Mitch Albom is the student of Morrie, who heard about him on TV and then travelled to meet him every Tuesday, documenting everything Morrie had to say about what he has learnt from life. And no, it is not at all as boring as it sounds. Notable people with ALS includes Stephen Hawking, and even if you don't know the name, I am sure you know the person. It's this guy right here:

The heartbreaking part isn't even about the cruelty of the disease. It is that Morrie is a wonderful person. Such a lively man with a good heart. For a person like that to be struck by such an illness and then being strong about it, it just brings me to tears. He's the kind of man who dances alone, not caring how he looks like, and everyone would probably think he was making a fool out of himself if it wasn't for the fact that he seems to be throughly enjoying himself.
And he got the disease at age 73. That just breaks my heart even more because, believe it or not, I love old people. This is something I have learnt ever since I joined nursing. Old people are funny in that they can tell you fascinating stories about their youths, or have cute complaints over everyday matter like using the toilet. And then there's the part where you get to help out in feeding, bathing, and cleaning an old person, and whether I receive gratitude or not doesn't matter to me because that person has already given me that all-round good feeling. I love old people. Also, old age is when you get to relax, reflect upon life and really enjoy the things around you. I think it just sucks when old age is ruined by things like disease or family problems.

My favorite excerpts from this book are these:

One afternoon, I am complaining about the confusion of my age, what is expected of me versus what I want for myself.
"Have I told you about the tension of opposites?" he says.
The tension of opposites?
"Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing, but you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you, yet you know it shouldn't. You take certain things for granted, even when you know you should never take anything for granted.
"A tension of opposites, like a pull on a rubber band. And most of us live somewhere in the middle."
Sounds like a wrestling match, I say.
"A wrestling match". He laughs. "Yes, you could describe life that way."
So which side wins, I ask?
"Which side wins?"
He smiles at me, the crinkled eyes, the crooked teeth.
"Love wins. Love always wins"

Needless to say, a tension of opposites is exactly how I would describe my relationship with Asrul. I'm loud, he's shy. I'm impulsive, he's careful and deliberate. I spend money like nobody's business while he's preaching at me to save some for a rainy day. And who wins? When we were so busy wrestling each other, having screaming matches, it was so clear who the winner was. Either me or him. But now, when we have understood how much we mean to each other, we let love win. We always agree in the middle. Well, most of the time anyway.

It is 1979, a basketball game in the Brandeis gym. The team is doing well, and the student section begins a chant, "We're number one! We're number one!" Morrie is sitting nearby. He is puzzled by the cheer. At one point, in the midst of "We're number one!" he rises and yells, "What's wrong with being number two?"
The students look at him. They stop chanting. He sits down, smiling and triumphant.

This one is just plain hilarious. Morrie is a very philosophical man, and I can't remember all of the philosophies he came up with by the end of his life but he just didn't agree with the American culture. You've got to read the book to really get what I'm saying. And my final quote on him:

"It's very simple. As you grow, you learn more. If you stayed at 22, you'd always be as ignorant as you were at 22. Aging is not just decay, you know. It's growth. It's more than the negative that you're going to die, it's also the positive that you understand you're going to die, and that you live a better life because of it."

As a child, I have always been impatient about my age. When I was 9, I couldn't wait to be 12. When I was 12, I could wait to be 18. And when I was 18, I couldn't wait to be, well, 21. And now I can't wait to hit 25 so I can get married. But that's it. I wish life could pause in my twenties, the best age you could ever be. But life just doesn't work that way and Morrie has given me a more positive outlook on aging.

Upon finishing this book, I again began to debate with myself. Which field do I really want to be involved in? Mental health or midwifery? Morrie was involved in mental health and reading his story has confirmed to me what I have suspected all along. That learning and practicing mental health really gives u satisfaction in life. It is a very personally rewarding field. But midwifery? I have wanted to be a midwife since I first discovered nursing, when I was 17. I have read books on pregnancy and newborns. I have planned to work in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) when I graduate.

Well, I think I will leave that for future me to decide. Future me is screwed with those two choices. Meanwhile, present me has to concentrate on graduating at least upper first class.

I suggested to Asrul that perhaps he could borrow some books I have to improve his English, since he's keen on doing that (after my mum suggested it, he has become quite enthusiastic). I was surprised when he agreed on reading up, so I'm lending him The Five People You Meet In Heaven, also by Mitch Albom. It's a simple book but with meaning, exactly the kind I like. I'm beginning to have a liking for books that are meaningful and come with a message. Chick lits are okay, but only if you're taking a crap and want to pass some time. Well, for me at least.

Thanks Ezzura, for the heads up on Cecilia Ahern's A Place Called Here, didn't want to waste my time going round a thick book with a silly ending.

The next book on the list is Roddy Doyle's Paddy Clarke Hahaha. Yup, that really is the title. I bought it because it has a unique cover. I just hope it doesn't disappoint me.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Commitment Is Nudging Me

I am back in college, a good 9 days before the semester even begins. I'm waiting for the word from my research partner, Soleha, so we can get started finalizing our research proposal. Meanwhile, I am spending everyday online, reading novels, eating, sleeping till noon, and hanging out with Asrul.

I am dead bored.

Asrul can only spare weekends for me since he's working weekdays and then there's the part where neither one of us has enough money to go anywhere. Yesterday we went bowling and he was so happy at the end of it, he asked me if I had any bad feelings today and I said no, and he said neither did he and he feels that today is a perfect day and he loves me more than anything and that I complete his life.


Back to the part where we don't have money, I am soooooooo anxious waiting for 2 things and I don't know which one I am most waiting for: a)my ptptn to cash in or, b)my results to come out. I am hoping they would both arrive on the same day so that if my results are good, I can celebrate and if not, well, retail therapy works really well on me. And I am absolutely dying for a new handbag. I have actually wanted to buy a light blue faded skinny jeans but I think the handbag should come first. I have been using the same black thing for almost 2 years now. I am in dire need for a new one. I'm thinking a purple one would be great, what do you think? I did the big mistake of googling handbags last night and it got me craving so bad, I could only fall asleep around 4 a.m.

I'm also thinking about getting a new hair colour because I noticed all my pictures show me as a partial brunette; half of my hair is some black dirt colour or something. But I'm really happy with my hair now, it's just nicely straight, and deals well with ironed curls, and well, I have to say that it is very silky to the touch, even though I have so little hair, I could grab everything with one whisk of my hand. Hehe. I'm thinking of getting a brighter kind of brown or some highlights, I still don't know which. All I know is, I'm growing it long to get nice long curls for graduation, which is a good 9 months from now. I hope my hair has reached my waist by then.

Anyway, today I went with Asrul's family to visit his dad at the ward. His dad just went through an operation last Friday, and it was a bit risky cause it was at his neck. He's being treated for cervical stenosis, by the way, a condition where the cervical nerves are being pressed down by the cervical spine. It's an old injury from football practice, I think. His dad also has chronic kidney disease, gout, and high blood pressure. I'm not sure bout his age but it's around 50 plus. So anyway, his mum was talking to a friend who was visiting at the hospital and I was standing next to her when the friend asked when her eldest son (Asrul's elder brother) is getting married. His mum laughed and said no, he still has lots of things to figure out and doesn't even have a serious girlfriend yet. And then she glanced at me, smiled, and said Asrul will probably get married first. Both women then looked at me and smiled. My heart jumped like anything. I turned to look at Asrul next to me. Who is intently engrossed in a video game in his handphone. I then nudged him and whispered, did you hear that? He only gave me a tiny smile and went on with his game. Well, I know he heard what his mum said.

Meanwhile, my mum looks like she's getting used to the idea of me and him. She asked me a few basic questions about him when I was back home. Stuff like how many siblings he has, what his mum does for a living, stuff like that. So she's showing interest. And I'm inviting him to my sister's wedding next June. I'm probably gonna bring him to meet my parents by April.

Don't get me wrong, I am not afraid of getting serious with him. I love him so much it hurts sometimes. The thing is... I am really scared of bringing him to meet my parents. I am happy with this relationship as it is. I don't need anyone's evaluations or judgement. But of course, after meeting my parents, there's that inevitable "What do you think?" question. And Asrul, he's not big on first impressions. He is really shy. And I mean, really shy. I am surprised he doesn't come with a shell.

Oh gosh, I just hope everything goes well. And when his mum mentioned us getting married, I was like... wham! Reality hit. I am old enough to get married. And marriage will mean grandkids for our parents and no, I want to take things slow. I am not having kids within the first 2 years, if I can help it.

Ah, whatever, I am just going on and on because I am so bored. I am currently reading Cecilia Ahern's A Place Called Here, and I would appreciate anyone's comment of whether it's a good book or not because I would hate to finish the whole book only to find that it is a crappy one.

On a final note, I am currently listening to this awesome song Ezzura gave me, no doubt she got it off Gossip Girl. I am so far behind Gossip Girl now that I can't even remember all the character's names. Okay, I'm lying. But I don't know what's going on. I am so gonna buy the season 2 DVD. Anyway, here's the song by Anya Marina, doing a cover of Whatever You Like, originally by T.I. But I love her version way better.

Anya Marina - Whatever You Like .mp3
Found at bee mp3 search engine

Happy listening!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Note To God


Dear Allah,

I love this guy with all my heart. Even though we may have our differences, there is not a day of my life since I met him that I have not been thankful to You for sending him to me. Now, all the heartbreaks and sleepless nights I have had since I first fell in love as a foolish teenage girl makes sense, because I would not have met him if it wasn't for the path my life has led me. We have both done mistakes in the past and it was only with the strength and love that You gave us that we were both able to seek forgiveness and it only made our relationship stronger. You have given him the realization and patience that he needed to change, and I can say now that he has. He is everything I could ever ask for and he makes me happy everyday. He is the kind of guy who would insist on carrying my handbag because he thinks it's too heavy for me, hold my hand and keep me from bumping into people because I always do, and say I'll steal the attention from the bride at a wedding when I'm feeling fat. I love him more than words can ever describe.

Please let me keep him. Even though I think at times that he is too good for me, please let me learn from my mistakes and give him the patience to wait for the changes I have to make. Please let him be my soul mate. Please let my parents like him with time, and bless us with the materials we need to build a happy home together. Please give me the strength to evade from distractions that are no good for me and make my heart stronger day by day.

Please let it be that, when I'm old and gray, we will be able to look into each other's eyes and still feel the love that we feel right now.


Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Big Bad Monster Named Doubt

I have been so sure of my life for some time now. What I want to do after graduation, where I want to rent, what car I'm gonna drive, where I will work, what I will do on weekends, and how long after graduation will I take up a master's degree. When I want to get married, how I want my wedding to be, when I want to have children, how many I want to have.

Up till about 6 hours ago.

Me and Asrul went to a friend's wedding, and I didn't know anyone but tried to make conversation since he's pretty close to some guys and he was quite excited to go. So anyway, this one guy said he's engaged and will be married in January and invited us to his wedding in Melaka. I said insyaallah and then inquired about his fiance, who turned out to be a nurse currently working in Saudi Arabia. He was telling me all the big bucks she's making and that she will remain working there for 2 years or so after their wedding. He was telling me that I should work in Saudi Arabia too so I said I had plans to work in London after Asrul finished his degree.

And then the storm came.

He and his friend started saying things and even though I don't remember exactly what they said, the themes went something like "Hidup sana tak ada budaya", "Jangan lupa diri", and when I turned to Asrul for a little help and said he's coming with me and wants to stay there too, Asrul quickly said he wants to come back here soon after and I was like, I wanna stay there long-term and then the themes changed to "Syurga di bawah tapak kaki suami" and I can't remember what peribahasa the guy said, it went "Hujan batu di negara sendiri, hujan ntah-ape-tak-ingat-dah di negara orang" (which I understood as "the grass is always greener on the other side", an English proverb).

Arrrggghhhh... the only reason I kept quiet while they said all this was because they were older and I didn't even know they're names. Well, it wasn't like they were pakcik kind of old but around 28 or so. I didn't want to start a debate. Plus, I was tired and it was hot and the heat was giving me a headache. At the risk of sounding like a high-maintenance bitch, I will say right now that I do not want my wedding to be a kenduri in the dead heat of the afternoon. Saya sakit kepala okay.

I was sooooo bursting to say all these things to those guys just now but I couldn't, but here in my blog, I can, so here goes, what I want to say to those themes :

1. Hidup sana tak ada budaya.
- I celebrated Hari Raya over there. And even though if I do get to stay there long-term, I plan to return to Malaysia each Raya, I did see that the children and adults alike do keep the Malay traditions alive, even if the children did have heavy British accents and some did not understand Malay. I'm confident that with time, my kids will be able to know and love their Malaysian roots, and I will make sure we practice good cultural values at home. Just because we live among non-malays doesn't mean we have to go along with their way of life too.

2. Jangan lupa diri.
- Ish. Please, please.. I am not that kind of person..! And even though some may say I came home with an accent, which I think is so not true, I will always be true to myself. I don't know, maybe 10 years down the road, you just can't help but adapt to the people around you but no, I will not do things that I am not comfortable with just for the sake of impressing others or anything silly like that. I am not a culture shock kinda person okay.

3. Syurga di bawah tapak kaki suami.
- Yes I know. But I think it is a bit extreme when he said that once I get married, I am free of all my responsibilities to my parents and it will be Asrul who is responsible for both my parents and his. I found great discomfort in this. I mean, I know many people will argue with me but I am and always have been strong headed so I'm gonna say it anyway.
I do not expect him to be fair to both my parents and his. I mean, he might appear to be during most occasions, but if it really came to it, I am very sure he will pick his parents over mine and that's only natural as he's human and his parents did raise him, not mine. I do not blame him for that. I will respect any reasonable decisions he makes and treat him the way husbands should be treated. But one thing about me, I expect house work to be equal. I will cook and clean if he takes the trash out and does the laundry. I will not take any grumbling over having to make your own dinner because I'm just too tired from work. I want a husband who understands and is considerate, a team player. And when it comes to my parents, I will never consider myself to be absolved from all responsibility. And I mean never. Unless I'm dead.

4. Hujan batu di negara sendiri and blah blah blah..
- There are many things about Malaysia that I prefer over London. For example, the food and the people. But when I said I wanted a better future for my career, I was referring to the nursing profession. How undeveloped it is and how the service side's career pathway is a dead end. I do not want to end up as a full time lecturer. I want to be a nurse and nursing I will do. I want to be in the field, not watching from the sidelines. And my mom may never understand this, but that does not mean working shifts all the time. There are just so many nursing positions that works office hours. It's just that those positions (at least, the ones I'm interested in) are not available in Malaysia. I want to work in a developed country, gain experience, knowledge, further my education, and then return home and make the necessary changes. I know it's hard but at least I have the initiative and motivation. So yeah, if you are talking about the development and empowerment of the nursing profession, the grass is greener on the other side. And since I have only been to London, then my other side is London.

There. All out. But I do still have one doubt.

I can see that Asrul is starting to change his mind. The plan was to get married after he finishes his degree and then head out to London together. We planned to get jobs and raise our kids there but the one dispute has been over when we should come back. He wants to return home ASAP. I want my kids to be schooled there because the best universities are just in your backyard. And after that talk with his friends, he said to me that he is comfortable here but will follow me where I want to go and will not hinder my dreams. This was a great contrast to the excited Asrul who just can't wait to go to the places I've been to. The Asrul who would say "nak, nak" whenever I talk about our future together in another country.

I know it's just a plan but being able to picture my future has been of great comfort to me. I do not want a hazy picture. I want it to be crystal clear. I know that it is just a plan and only God will decide it's success. But at least I have guidance, direction, and passion to ensure me that success. And now all I have is a tainted picture. He doesn't even sound like he wants to go anymore.

Oh, and the guy also said that he thinks that as long as his family has enough to eat and be happy, he will be contented. But what I'm thinking is, if you can do better, then why don't you? Why settle for second best when you know you have more potential to excel? I do not want to to end up in a dead end job. I want to make a difference. I want to contribute to society. I want to be remembered. And the best way to do that is to figure out how things are done in other places that can be applied at home. That is why I need to venture outside this country.

Oh god, I need that crystal clear picture back. I hate doubt.