Tag Archives: fear

forever young

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Greetings all! I know, it’s been well over a week since I last blogged. So much for hoping to blog weekly! Each night I try to get on the computer after my children have gone to bed, but I’ll be too shattered to put my thoughts down. My hubby said it doesn’t matter if I blogged every fortnight instead, no point sticking to my once a week writing if it’s not of good quality. I suppose he has a point. Anyway, here I am tonight, missing my blog and ready to share some thoughts with you!

Now that we’re officially middle-aged (my hubby disagrees, he who still has thick curly hair and taut tummy compared to other men his age!), I cannot help but hear of illnesses and deaths all around me. I mean, we do hear about it all the time, but somehow it stays with me a bit longer than usual now that I’m older. I remember losing a very dear cousin of mine when I was about 20. He was barely 17. My first real loss, I was devastated, but I quickly bounced back. I was very sad but I didn’t go around thinking that it could also happen to me. Like being ill or being involved in a tragic accident, it’s unfortunate that it had happened to others but surely it wouldn’t touch me? I then heard of several University mates passing away in my mid 20s, again same line of thoughts occurred. Afterwards a few relatives died suddenly in their late 50s, I remember how I wasn’t too bothered at all. Until my own dad passed away in my early 30s, then it hit me real hard!

I went around like a zombie afterwards, I kept thinking about death. Life seemed really bleak from then on. I wanted to wear all black permanently, I felt no joy whatsoever. My husband was really patient with me, always there to pick me up. I then found happiness once more when my daughter was born the following year. Children keep you busy 24/7, they are the essence of life. You cannot be half dead whilst raising children, you have to be fully awake. You need to be alive in every sense of the word! So my life resumed its normalcy. All 3 of my remaining grandparents also passed away the same year, but I could handle it. I was busy with my family life and more accepting of death. I then lost my dear Uncle a few years ago (so sad, he reminded me of my father a lot), I was able to deal with my emotion through one of my posts, Goodbye Uncle. Until now of course, fast forward 15 years, we arrive to where I am today.

Now it’s like an everyday occurrence almost; I hear so and so being ill, I hear so and so dying. And I start questioning my own mortality, I know I’m being morbid but I just can’t help it. Today I went to the doctor’s for my health check-up, all seemed fine (Alhamdulillah) apart from the usual hormonal change that women my age go through. Even that made me a little upset, I feel as if I’m not able to cope. My hubby said I’m strong and I’ve been through a lot, he’s certain I can jump pass this next hurdle in my life. InshaAllah, I can. But it just breaks my heart to pieces to hear one of my friends from boarding school being terminally ill, yes, at my age. So very young still, as many would consider. Another school friend passed away a couple of years ago, also from cancer. I can’t brush it away anymore like I did 2 decades ago, certainly not. I have to take heed, it’s a reminder. Illnesses and deaths remind us of our temporary existence in this world. One day we too shall perish, sooner or later we don’t quite know.

What do we do in the meantime? We carry on living until our last breath. We do our best in carrying out the roles in life we’ve been carved out to play. We continue to strive for success and happiness. We try to help those around us, we try to be good people. We don’t falter or lose hope. And that’s how I’m going to get through the rest of my life. I shall stay positive, my family needs me. I may be middle-aged, but that’s just a number. I need to stay young at heart, so that I can carry on. There will be thorns here and there, that’s for certain. But I can ride through it, I shall try my best. I shall make the most of my life, no one else is going to do it for me…

With that I end my post. I’m reminded of another favourite of ours at boarding school back in the 80s. Forever young, I want to be FOREVER YOUNG! Do you really want to live FOREVER? The wordings moved me even back then, now it seem very apt. The world we live in today, so much more advanced but still full of pain and suffering. But as Anne Frank (diarist and fugitive of the Third Reich) once said, “Think of all the beauty still left around you and be HAPPY.” Go listen and ponder, a very beautiful song indeed…

leeds-castle

England 1996, my first month away from my homeland Malaysia

fear and hope

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The Malaysia Airlines flight from Kuala Lumpur-Beijing (MH370) that vanished a week ago is still missing. It made me reflect on the fragility of our entire existence. When I was in my teens and early adulthood, news of deaths/tragedies had little impact on me. The first one which affected me personally was the loss of a dear cousin when he was 17. He was 3 years my junior, we got on really well. He drowned a day before he was due to fly to The Philippines, he had won a trip competition. I was shocked, totally taken aback. I still remember my late dad sobbing away on his prayer mat after we received the heartbreaking news, it was his eldest brother’s son. We attended the funeral, it seemed so surreal. I visited his grave for a few months afterwards, it gave me comfort to read verses from our Holy Quran in dedication to him.

As time passed by I moved on, there were other deaths/tragedies of course but I wasn’t moved in the same way. Until my own beloved dad left us in December 2001 due to sudden terminal illness, it was devastating. I began to realise how fragile and temporary our life is, it was certainly a major turning point for me. I went around like a zombie, trying to live my life as normal but found it very difficult indeed. My husband and children kept me going, it’s hard to stay miserable and grim with a young family. Slowly life got back to the way it was, I could genuinely smile again. The world felt beautiful once more. Just like it was when I was a child, a teenager, a young adult.

But I’ve also become more cautious now, there’s this fear in my heart amidst the hope in daily living. Unlike my younger version who was carefree, who followed her heart and never bothered much with the consequences. Now it seems I worry over every little thing; with regards to myself, my hubby and children mainly. Health, safety, general well-being, you name it, I worry about them all. I’m definitely becoming more like my mom! It takes a while for me to get over tragic news these days, I brood over them longer than I should. I live in fear and in hope; knowing that illnesses, tragedies and deaths do occur recurrently in this fragile existence, no matter how careful we are. I know that when all efforts fail, one has to accept the fate decreed.

At the end of the day, we are not in full control of our lives, as much as we would like to believe so. We go through life as best as we can, with our respective faiths as guidance. We hope and pray for a good life and a good end. And we hope for mercy and forgiveness in the after life, God knows best. There has to be hope, to counter the fear. And I continue to live between the two, praying that God makes me stronger each day to cope with whatever life has in store for me. Right now I just pray they find MH370 real soon, for I know what it’s like to live between fear and hope. I’m sure many of you do too.

jbdl

my youngest amongst the blooming daffodils, happy times, Spring is here!

happy and carefree, as they should be

my older 3, happy and carefree, as they should be

NLN

colourful crocuses at the park, bringing hope and cheer after a bleak Winter

IHPH

my family, our journey in this life continues for now