some things you just gotta do

Lets commemorate the day I deactivated IG and Twitter –> 28th Sept 2021 a date to remember LOL.

The idea to do this has been at the back of my mind for the longest time but I always thought, nah there’s no difference of deactivating it or not, I will have self control, click on in when needed only. Pffft, jokes on me.

I did not plan this but somehow on the evening of 28th I randomly googled ‘how to deactivate IG/Twitter’ then I thought huh might as well just follow the steps and do it AND BOY, I DID. Weird how it felt very uplifting and kinda empowering. I then started telling everyone close to me so they wouldn’t worry about anything because this is not the i-would-like-to-disappear-let-see-who-cares-to-notice-move but it really is just something I need to let go in order to gain something else.

The time I had consumed mindlessly scrolling on it, searching for what I don’t know. Absorbing my mind with other people’s life is just not what I need right now. JUST NO. So the idea of filling that so call wasted time with something else is pretty exciting for me. To reset and refocus on ‘what and who’ is more important in my life, is my main concern now.

Day 1 and feeling great. Like I actually have time to read in between work or like reading actual news instead of some random tweet of a current issue. DO I CARE ABOUT WHAT’S TRENDING TODAY? NO, I DON’T.

Not sure how long I would be on deactivation mode. The target would be the whole month of October but we shall see. Maybe I might get addicted to deactivation mode.

Ok time to read some more books and fall in love again with this gift called life. My life ❤

conversation with a cat

I fondly remember that particular day when a cat followed me after lunch until my office door. I was alone that day so i invited him in.

There’s no food I could offer and he wasn’t begging for any so I thought some water would do. Good thing there was an unused plastic container so I fill it up with some H20 and put it down for my new furry little friend. He indulged into it right away.

I should get back to work but I sat down leaning against the wall in the pantry watching him drink. Then I started telling him everything that I was feeling which I never ever told any other soul. He continued drinking, oblivious with his surrounding.

I poured my heart out to a cat until I teared up a little. He finished the drink and starts licking his paws. Some say it’s a sign of thank you by a cat. I thought he might want to leave or explore around but he curled up near me still listening to my rants.

As soon as I was done, he slow blinked at me. Maybe he meant it as, “there there, you’ll be okay human”. I realised I still had work to do, so I guided him out of the pantry back to the main door. I would have taken him home but– I can’t. He didn’t seem like he wanted to leave too. I said “sorry, it’s time to go”, open the door gave him a little pat on the head and nudge him out.

He still waited outside, looking at me through the glass door. I smiled, and whispered ‘thank you’.

I went back to do my work, 30 mins later came back to peep through the glass door. He was still there, chillin’. Laid on his back, sleepy eyes. Uhhh, my heart.

When I came peeping through an hour later, he was gone.

Brief and memorable moment, conversation with a random stray cat, that was the first and last I saw him.

To be honest, I would not have it any other way.

words as your serendipity

I saw this new movie on Netflix and one particular scene seems so profound. Maybe if you are reading this, you might need to hear it too.

“The past can be intoxicating, it can draw you in. Create the illusion that things were better, you were happier or experiences were richer back then. It can also debilitate you, leaving you stuck in memories of pain, heartbreak and disappointment, holding you back from even attempting another shot at happiness. They say if you don’t learn from past mistakes, we’re bound to repeat them. But we can also learn to let go of the past, learn to forge ahead, keeping the knowledge close but not letting it overtake our ability to try again, to feel again?”

There was a lot of crying in July,

And as much as I could acknowledge why,

I started again to cry,

Knowing this is it, it is the final good bye.

caving in, yet again… with hope

What is hope to you? Because these days I can’t find the right words to define it anymore.

Ibn Qayyim said, “The heart is like a bird: love as its head and its two wings are hope & fear.” So the question here is, which wing do you flap more of?

Truth #1 : Hold On, Pain Ends

I supposed this would be my definition of hope that I would hold on to for now. To always remind myself that every thing in dunya is temporary. Not just pain/ difficulty but also happiness — this is temporary as well. Like the phenomenon of day and night.

Ultimately, to have hope in challenging times like right now is a struggle. If you can find whatever motivation from whichever medium to keep yourself alive & sane, take it. Take it and never look back.

Truth #2: We are living in the era of chaos

Locally & Globally, Mentally & Physically, Personally & Professionally. Our government is crumbling, Palestine is still not free, and economic constraints are brutal. People are dying, not only due to Covid, but for so many kinds of injustice.

As much as caving in has helped open our eyes via social media, that we can stand up and create awareness for the oppressed, note that the best of times is also the worst of times (maybe a little more worse even)

Truth #3: There’s a gap between knowing how your life should be vs how you actually live it

It is a tragic gap. By this it means, “The gap between the hard realities around us, and what we know is possible — not because we wish it were so, but because we’ve seen it with our eyes.”

There are those who would walk out beautifully from this experience. Congratulations, you lucky bastard. Enjoy every minute of it, that ray of light shining brightly towards you. Yes, I mean it.

But for most of us, the reality is a mess and much less glamorous. Between making ends meet, and keeping everyone you love safe, please know that you are not alone.

You have to sit directly in the tragic gaps and trust that God will come through. It’s as simple and as complex as that. Keep showing up despite the chaos. Be humble in the pursuit of your hope, and ruthless in fighting the negative whispers that comes with it. Find friends with whom you can weather the tragic gaps. Make life easy for one another.

Take care of your mental health.

Quran 2:155-156

Finding the words 🇵🇸

As I write this on the the 2nd day of Syawal, on a blessed Friday afternoon, while listening to a friend recite Alkahf via her IG Live, I’m reflecting on what I’ve been seeing/reading the past few days, scrolling through my newsfeeds feeling heartbroken & helpless.

In all honesty, there is a reason why we’re not the ones there right now, because we won’t be able to handle it. Palestinians are the strongest, most resilient souls in their reliance towards Allah. They are not shaken, not even a bit in their spirit, their persistency. Allah really chose the right nation to protect His house, something we could never compare to.

I keep on seeing pics where they are still smiling in the midst of being captured or held down, and I can’t help but think it’s as though they are seeing their ultimate home in Jannah, like this world and this pain means nothing.

“Allah will say to the righteous: O tranquil soul! Return to your Lord, well pleased with Him and well pleasing to Him. So join My servants, and enter My Paradise.”  (Qur’an 89:27-30)

With all that being said, it’s natural to wonder: “Will anything I do really make a difference?”

It’s a fair question. 

It might not be in your hands to end the violence and the pain. But you hold the ability to respond to the call of someone in need.

And that means something.

Just as there is no barrier between the du’a of the oppressed and Allah, let there be no barrier between the people of Palestine and your support. Please continue to pray, raise awareness & donate.

“Believers are like one body in their love, mercy, and connection with each other. If any part aches, the whole body reacts in response to it.”
– Prophet Muhammad ﷺ

We are ONE. And if we don’t stand with the people of Palestine now, then when will we?

Minal ‘Aidin wal Faizin, Selamat Hari Raya and Eid Mubarak.

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“Here’s to 21 years (with another 8 years of experience).”

One of the things that I plan to do this year is to write 2-3 things I’m grateful for every day. I did not have any particular reason for this but was probably inspired by the idea of having a gratitude diary and also being able to look back on what I was thankful for each day kind of excites me.

I’ve written something as simple as ‘today I’m grateful for the existence of tomyam’ and there were days that I’ve also written about being grateful of everything that made me feel awful because without acknowledging my bad days I would probably not be grateful on my good days.

I came across a video by L and he too did the same thing but in a more beautiful way of looking at it and I would like to reflect upon it from this perspective. He said that alhamdulillah comes in three forms and I couldn’t agree more:

  1. Being grateful is not just about when you get what want, but it is also in the opportunity in being able to do something. (ex: helping your parents)
  2. It’s easier to let go of something once you have expressed appreciation for it. (once you express an appreciation for a blessing, the blessing stays with you even if you loose it)
  3. Expressing appreciation takes discipline, it’s not a fleeting feeling where you feel grateful when something nice happens and it’s not when you become an optimistic idiot that’s blind to all the crazy things that are happening in the world right now. The true spirit of alhamdulillah & being grateful is to acknowledge of those crazy terrible things which are happening but to also know that good & great things are happening as well and it is to choose hope over hate because being cynical is easy but to choose hope every time, that takes courage and it also takes discipline.

April 27th is the 117th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, and as of that date I have written 323 things that I have been grateful for. What blows my mind is, all these blessings has always been there in my life. All I had to do was take a moment to pause, reflect and just search for them daily.

And I really hope with all my heart that my daily gratitude list will continue to grow for as long as I keep on searching.

248 days remain until the end of 2021.

248 more days and chances to search & be reminded of being grateful.

Happy Birthday, Nurliyana Amirah.

divinely uninspired to a hellish extent

The title above is Lewis Capaldi’s album name in 2019. It is also how I mostly feel in March. It’s hard to bring myself to paint, even harder to read. I don’t even know where I’m going by writing this.

However on some days when I decide to pick myself up from what ever that made me feel low, I realised there are always too many blessings around me.

My friends are busy becoming amazing parents, while I’m here amazed at how amazing my mom & dad is. Two different things, still a blessing.

Grateful for the wake up call of gratitude but picking up myself again is sometime a struggle.

And they say if you don’t want to go through a struggle it means you’re demanding for Jannah asap, because there are no struggles there, only in this world.

We all have struggles, we also have blessings.

Time to remind myself of my purpose & intentions again plus some goals I’ve set my mind to do & work on.

I hope to be of help to anyone in need as it would mean I’m a walking answered prayer for them.

My favourite month April is almost here & same goes to Ramadhan Kareem.

Chin up, buttercup. You got this!

heart work is hard work

Never have I dealt with anything more difficult than my own soul, which sometimes helps me and sometimes opposes me – Imam Al-Ghazali

Confession: Some days, it’s just really hard to be positive. I now understand how some people can fake smiles in front of others while they struggle with themselves deep inside. It was a sudden trigger to me when I came across a 15 secs vid of a little girl saying ‘Is the sun awake? Are you happy?’ Such an innocent words coming from a kid but it caught me off guard.

Because honestly, am I actually happy? Then why do i pause and hesitate to answer. Even worst, why can’t I answer.

Sometimes…. I wonder if I’m a hoax, for saying I am grateful to God and still struggle with the state of my heart. Then an email came from A which includes the above quote by Imam Al-Ghazali, and I breathed slightly easier. Few days later, my best friend P wrote a post on her blog, something about her late night thought process and I shall quote,

“Whatever that seem to work on others, dont work on you. You are left with no choice but to discover a whole new one that allows you to feel alive, to feel worthy of living. Day by day, there seems to be lesser and lesser things to look forward to. You are grateful you wake up but you dont know exactly for what you do.”

Basically she explains life as a system that we wire ourselves to follow, that technically should work for most of us in general. However, not everyone follows through this system accordingly at every stage of life. Some just finds themselves failing at one stage of the system or just failing the system entirely.

We all struggle in our own ways, it’s easy to succumbed in your negative thoughts and blame the system. Let me quote P again, “There is no one to blame, no comparisons to weigh our different ways of living. We are all somehow a product of certain circumstances. But tell me though, do we want to stay living as a product of circumstances or do we want to pursue life as what we want and as what we know we are capable of without all the past decisions that have helped grow us?”

After reading that, I breathed even more easier. Who cares about the system, we shouldn’t have set our minds to be played by it. It’s about time we unfollow the flow.

A reminder to myself that before I get frustrated and complain about anything, remember that I would never fully know what and where Allah has placed goodness in. As we always pray for the best in everything, insha’Allah there is khayr in wherever you may be in life right now.

Heart work is hard work.

The key word is, try and try again.

To the Gardens beneath which rivers flow

I needed time to process my thoughts, to put feelings into words, to accept and redha. Just a week ago, I saw my beloved grand aunt got buried.

To be reminded of death on the very first month of the new year is just hard for me to phantom but proves a reminder on how God is Great and there is no denying His plans and wisdom behind it all.

My beloved Tok Bu, who helps me get ready for school until I could get ready by myself, the one who would sit and watch TV with me while we joke around on the handsome actor, the one who would never stop praying for my success and that one day I would marry a good man… my beloved Tok Bu ❤

You just don’t see it coming, the death, when it happen so sudden, when the person was not sick for a very long time, when the person was very much herself a few days before, when it just happen because it was meant to happen.

As much as it breaks my heart that she won’t be able to see her prayers being manifested before her eyes, that some day the good man will come into my life, I know that she is now in a better place, which is with you Ya Rabb.

I will always miss hearing her voice, and mostly just sitting next to her… listening and talking to her. May we meet again Tok Bu, in the Gardens beneath which rivers flow… rest well :’)

Oh Allah forgive her and have mercy on her, make honourable her reception and expand her grave, purify her of sin as a white rob is purified of dirt, place her in Your highest level of Jannah. In Your sacred names I pray, Amin.

“There should be a statute of limitation on grief. A rule book that says it is all right to wake up crying, but only for a month. So after 30 days or so you will no longer turn with your heart racing, certain you heard your name being called.”