Friday, May 29, 2009

Letting Go

A cheerful 5-year old girl with bouncy golden curls was waiting with her mother at the check-out counter when she saw them: a circle of glistening white pearls in a pink foil box.

"Oh please, Mommy. Can I have them? Please, Mommy, please...?"

Quickly the mother checked the back of the little foil box and then looked back into the pleading blue eyes of her little girl's upturned face.

"One rand ninety-five, that's almost R2.00. If you really want them, I'll think of some extra chores for you and in no time you can save enough money to buy them for yourself. Your birthday's only a week away and you might get some money from Grandma."

As soon as Aysha got home, she emptied her penny bank and counted out 17 cents. After dinner, she did more than her share of chores and she went to the neighbor and asked Mrs. Kamaa if she could pick Dandelions for ten cents. On her birthday, Grandma did give her another rand and at last, she had enough money to buy the necklace.

Aysha loved her pearls. They made her feel dressed up and grown up. She wore them every where - Madrassa, kindergarten, even to bed. The only time she took them off was when she went swimming or had a bubble bath. Mother said if they got wet, they might turn her neck green.

Aysha had a very loving Daddy and every night when she was ready for bed, he would stop whatever he was doing and come upstairs to read her a story. One night, when he finished the story, he asked Aysha,

"Do you love me?"

"Oh yes, Daddy. You know that I love you."

Then give me your pearls."

"Oh, Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have Princess - the white horse from my collection. The one with the pink tail. Remember, Daddy? The one you gave me. She's my favourite!"

"That's okay, honey... Daddy loves you". And he brushed her cheek with a kiss.

About a week later, after the story time, Aysha's Daddy asked her again,

"Do you love me?"

"Daddy, you know I love you."

"Then give me your pearls."

Oh Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have my baby doll. The brand new one I got for my birthday. She is so beautiful and you can have the yellow blanket that matches her sleeper."

"That's okay... sleep well little one. Daddy loves you."

And as always, he brushed her cheek with a gentle kiss.

A few nights later when her Daddy came in, Aysha was sitting on her bed with her legs crossed Indian-style. As he came close, he noticed her chin was trembling and one silent tear rolled down her cheek,

"What is it, Aysha? What's the matter?"

Aysha didn't say anything but lifted her little hand up to her Daddy.

When she opened it, there was her little pearl necklace. With a little quiver, she finally said,

"Here, Daddy... it's for you..."

With tears gathering in his own eyes, Aysha's kind Daddy reached out with one hand to take the cheap store necklace, and with the other hand he reached into his pocket and pulled out a blue velvet case with a strand of genuine pearls and gave them to Aysha. He had them all the time; he was just waiting for her to give up the cheap store stuff so he could give her the genuine treasure.

So as it is with Allah. Allah is waiting for us to give up the cheap things in our lives so that Allah can give us beautiful treasures. Are you holding onto things which Allah wants you to let go of? Are you holding on to harmful or unnecessary partners, relationships, habits and activities which you have come so attached to that it seems impossible to let go of?

Sometimes, it is so hard to see what is in the other hand, but do believe this one thing : Allah will never take away something without giving you something better to take its place.

~ The End ~

Nice story, isn't it? I believe, some of you might have read this story before.

It's so true... sometimes it's just so hard to let go of someone or something which have been a part of you for so long eventhough he/she doesn't serve any purpose anymore.

Take relationships, for example. I've been through this many times before but when people asked me, "Why is it so hard for you to let him go"? I just didn't have an answer.

Maybe it was habitual, a hard habit to break. Eventhough all he did was making my life miserable, I stayed on for fear that my life would be even more miserable if I had lost him. I failed to realise that if I had let him go, I'd be a better person. I'd be happier, I'd cry less, I'd have less stress, and perhaps I'd meet someone better.

But the act of letting go is no small task. Not everyone can do it. I, for one, could never muster the strength to let go of my man no matter how bad he'd treated me. I was afraid I could never meet someone new.

The period between separation and meeting someone new can be strenuous. The fear of being alone can force one person to stay on a bad relationship eventhough everybody else says "Go!"

I learnt the art of letting go from my husband, then my boyfriend. He was the one who told me to let go of my past before I can find true happiness.

We were having a quarrel at that time and he wrote me a very long e-mail. He said,

"Yati, you will never find happiness if you keep holding on to your past relationship and maintained a link with it, be it friendship or anything similar. One day you will hurt yourself and saddest of all of all, you will hurt your partner who has no connection with your relationship in the past. This time it was me who are at the receiving end... but it will be the same for the next guy and the next guy if you continue to play around with your past and the present.."

At that time, I never realised that by maintaining close link with my past would spoil my chances with my current partner. I never looked at it that way, anyway. So after that incident, I began to think. Is it true what he said? That I should completely detach myself from my past in order to find true love? That I shouldn't hang on to old boyfriends in my pursuit of happiness?

So I made a decision that night - my past had to go. It was a choice between him and and my ex. I chose him, and so my ex had to go.

Oh man, it was so hard to pick up the phone and tell him that I couldn't see him anymore. I was crying buckets because he had been a part of my life for so long. But I had to do it. I kept on saying, "I'd rather lose you than him."

So I did it. And after that, MrN and I became very good friends, then lovers and now husband and wife.

I'm happy I made that decision because it just lifted a whole burden off my shoulder. Something that has been hanging on to me for a so long and when it's finally gone, it was such a relief.

MrNordin was right when he said, "You can never find happiness if you hold on to your past". Be it old boyfriends, old grievances or old habits, just let them go. You'll be so much happier if you just do that.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Lessons in Love

I’ve finished reading that Goldie Hawn book. Very inspiring.

For a big star that she is (or was), she is actually quite ordinary. She worries over the same things, she cares about the same things, and she aspires to be just like any of us, that is, to be a good mother.

The only difference I picked up from my reading is how she treats her relationship with Kurt Russell. They’ve been together since 1983 and yet, they never marry. And why is that? It’s because she doesn’t believe that a marriage certificate is the only thing that could keep two people together and happy. “Been there, done that” she quips.

Putting aside the moral issue of living together out of wedlock, I think she has some good points to ponder about relationships. She says, eventhough they are not married, it doesn’t mean she doesn’t have to work hard at the relationship. Infact, it makes her work harder.

Everyday I wake up with the intention to be happy and the best that I can be. I try to make each day a new day. I try to remind myself each morning why I am in love. And when there are differences, I try to put myself in the other person’s shoes so I can feel what they are feeling, not just what I’m feeling. I try to look with four eyes instead of just my two”.

She also talks about keeping the flame burning, which I find quite fascinating. She says,

I know it isn’t easy to keep the flame burning. People grow comfortable with each other, or they become creatures of habit. And they are always not in tune with their partners. Sometimes, when you have been in a relationship for a while, you get bogged down with a lot of negativity and dullness, and you get tired of dealing with all that stuff.

One trick when you’re feeling down about your relationship is to imagine life without the other. It is a very scary thing to ask yourself to do, because when you do it, you really get the sense of what your world looks like. Maybe you’ll like it better, in which case the relationship is probably over. But more often than not, you’ll see a huge void

Then she goes on to explain how to deal with the void:

If you feel that void, if you feel sadness, then take out some pictures and remind yourself what you were once like. Laugh together at how young and stupid and how crazy you both were, or even how you looked. Photos are great triggers of memories and emotions. Ask yourself if you too have changed.”

Reading this particular chapter makes me come to my senses. Why am I angry all the time? Why am I always unhappy? I shouldn’t be too critical of my loved one. I shouldn’t try to make him what I want him to be. I should rejoice in our differences!

A philosopher Khalil Gibran once wrote about marriage, “Stand together, yet not too near together, for the pillars of the temple stand apart.” How very apt!

On that note, Ms Hawn has this to say about her man:

There is nothing more unpleasant for me to see a man stripped of his power. I’ve watched it happen in my own home. It is far better to respect a man who has his own life, his own excitement, his own passion. Celebrate that in him, honour his variety and his power.

The next time you ask, “Why didn’t you call? Why were you late for dinner? Why didn’t you pick up the milk? Or continue to jab at what you view as his weaknesses, ask yourself, is this what you want to end up with? Is this your intention, to tame the beast? Is that the prize? The man who just says “Yes, dear” and falls asleep in the armchair every night?

Be careful what you wish for, because you might end up stripping away the vitality, the sexual energy of the man who you once thought as your knight in shining armor.”

Does that ring a bell?

A good read, try and grab a copy.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Was I Selfish?

I'm not one who would jump at a sudden outburst of emotion from my loved ones, but last night was a different story.

We were lying in bed, pondering what to have for dinner when my husband received a phone call from his cousin & brother. They wanted to take him out for dinner ~ "a birthday treat", they said. Fine.

But a thought suddenly crossed my mind, "Why is it whenever they asked you out, they never include me? Why do they always ajak you alone?"

He kept quiet. "I don't know lah.. I suppose when they all ajak I, ajak you sekali lah kut. Nak pegi ke? Jom lah!" (macam tak ikhlas je..)

No, thank you.

"I don't really want to go, but wouldn't it be nice if they had asked, "Ajaklah Yati sekali..". Ini tak, it's always you alone. Kalau I yang ajak diaorang, I'd always include their spouses!"

At this point, my husband mula naik hangin.

"I don't know lah, B... I don't know why they don't ajak you sekali! Maybe I'll call them and ask them now!"

I kept quiet.

"No need", I said. "I'm just saying, it would be nice to be asked, not that I want to go anyway. They know I'm at home and it's only proper if they had asked!"

My husband tak puas hati.

"You're asking me an impossible question, something which I don't have an answer to. Why don't they ajak you? I don't know! It's the same thing like why your friends never ajak me when they want to go for coffee with you!"

I interjected, "No, I always include you when I go out with my friends..."

He said, "No, I was only included because you asked me to!" (then he slammed the door to the bathroom)

I didn't understand why he was so mad. I was just asking why they asked him out alone. Yeah, it was a birthday treat, fine. Tapi ajaklah the wife sekali, kan? Just for courtesy sake. Bukannya I nak pegi sangat pun!

The room suddenly felt very hot and I had to get out. So I quickly changed, took my car keys and drove out with Nizzar. Rasa nak nangis... He was still in the bathroom when I left.

When I got home, he has already left. I didn't know what time he got in. Even this morning, we didn't really speak to each other.

Tell me, was I wrong to ask him that question? Should I just shut up, gave him my sweetest smile and said, "Pegilah yang... have a good time...." when deep inside, I wished he would have spent the rest of the evening with me?

Ultraman Kindy! No joke!

I received these two photos in my mailbox today.

I can't believe such place exists! A kindergarten with a huge Ultraman waiting for children at the main entrance... it's awesome!

If only I lived in Penang, my little Ultraman would surely go to this kindy!

(p/s Thanks, MHB for the photos! It was very thoughtful of you. Like I said, I'd surely make it a point to go to Penang soon to scout this place!!)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Update: Birthday Dinner

We had a quiet dinner at home last night. Birthday boy's wish. Like last year, I came out with the idea, the others executed it.

The girls made a lovely pot of Moussaka, a specialty Greek dish. We had this at Porto Romano last weekend and thought, wouldn't it be nice if we could have this on Baba's birthday. So, we looked up the recipe and the girls volunteered to cook it.

They went to their Khala's (their mum's sister) place the day before to learn how to make the Mousaaka. K.Mahani is a wonderful cook. She makes excellent kambing kuzi and other aunthentic Middle Eastern dishes that we so love to eat whenever she invited us to her house.

The girls said it was quite easy to make. So, I went to the supermarket and get all the necessary ingredients. It turned out pretty well actually. Very delicious! To accompany the Moussaka, we had Greek salad with Feta cheese, tzatziki dip, tortillas and some garlic bread. In a way, it was very Greek.

MrNordin loved it. My little Ultraman loved it too! He especially liked the candle-lit setting. It was the first time we all had candlelight dinner at home. With soft music playing in the background, it beats any fancy restaurants in town!

Overall, it was a nice birthday dinner prepared by MrNordin's loved ones. The only slack was the cake. It was a tad too sweet and PINK in colour! Oh well... if you ever thought of buying Baskin' Robbins ice cream cake for a birthday party, don't get con by the sales girl who told you that their pink heart-shaped cake is their best seller. It's too sweet, and for the price, I think you can get better ones elsewhere.

Enjoy the photos!

Table setting for 7

Moussaka and Greek salad. Tortillas in the foreground

I gave him a coffee table book on Zheng He. Actually, he wants a pair of brown shoes.

MrNordin and family

No Tarzan & Jane after the party. My Tarzan slept much too early...
(photo snapped by Little Ultraman)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Selamat Hari Jadi...

While I'm still doing my "thinking", here's announcing that today is MrNordin's birthday! (kalau dah suka menulis tu, memang gatal jugak tangan ni nak menaip, kan? hee.. hee)

MrNordin...MrNordin... what can I say about you today?

M - Metrosexual (he used to follow me for manicure & pedicure!)

R - Romantic (his words are like "sugar")

N - Notable (he stands out in a crowd)

O - Organized (very pantang kalau rumah tak kemas!)

R - Rational (Quite strict, but fair. Must reason with him)

D - Delightful (very pleasant to be with, a funny character, and charming too)

I - Insightful (looks deeper, never skim the surface)

N - Not Available! (he's mine, of course!)

Here's a picture when he was 10 years old.

Here's one when his cheeky mood strikes! (Raya 2006)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I have become more and more hesitant to write these days. Not that I don’t have anything to write ~ I do! It’s just that I’m beginning to feel that my blog has defeated its purpose.

In blogsphere, your life is an open secret. Everyone is welcomed to read it unless you take it private. I don’t mind that, really… my stories are to be shared.

But recently, it has come to my attention that some unexpected readers have been frequenting my blog and it made me wonder whether some things which I don’t want some people to know will become public knowledge anyhow.

Nadim told me his classmates read my blog and they enjoyed it, it seemed. Then a couple of times, at private functions, I bumped into people whom I’ve never met before and they told me they love my blog. Some of my officemates from different departments read it too (I don’t know how they knew!) but I sure hope my boss doesn’t!

At first, I was quite thrilled. I like it when I hear people say, “You must be MrsNordin!” or “Hi, MrsNordin!”. Rasa macam celebrity pulak!

But after a while, it got me thinking, “Oopps… have I written anything that would offend anyone?” “Have I written anything that shouldn’t be known to this person or that person?” “Should I delete this posting?”

It’s not fun any more.

I'm still thinking how I should go about doing it. Until I find an answer to that, I won't post any new stories.

'Til then my friends... adios!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

On Mother's Day

Last Sunday, I was lying down on the sofa trying to get some sleep. The heat was really getting on to me. Plus, I had a headache after a late night out with my husband the night before.

I was half asleep when suddenly I felt a small hand nudging me to wake up. I opened my eyes and I saw my little Ultraman standing next to me with a pink envelope in his hand. His brother and sisters were all standing around him.

Mummy, for Mummy..”, he said.

I was thrilled. I didn’t expect the kids to bother.

They gave me this card:

And inside it, was written this:

I love the card! It's totally cool!

Then each one of my children took turn to kiss me. “Happy Mother’s Day!”, they said.

I felt somewhat embarrassed because I was still in a daze. My hair was disheveled.

Then, the cutest thing happened...

I think, that little boy didn’t know what was going on, but seeing everyone kissing me, he must have thought it was a special day for Mummy. So, after everyone had done kissing me, he turned to me and ordered, “Mummy, baring!”.

Oh ok...

Then he held my face, looked me in the eyes, and gave me a peck on both cheeks. Aww... so sweet!

Then he ran to the kitchen. I was wondering what was he up to now. Then, he came back running to me with this:

For Mummy!”, he said.

Hee.. hee… that’s Doraemon in the McDonald’s kids meal ~ a leftover from his birthday the week before.

Ha! Ha! I thought that was so cute!

Now, that is what you called, "It's the thought that counts!"

Happy Mother's Day everyone! Hope you've had a good one!

Nizzar's Doraemon for Mummy on Mother's Day

Friday, May 08, 2009

Goldie - A Lotus Grows in the Mud

I'm reading this now. Very engaging. Hard to put down. Will tell the story once I'm done.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Nizzar's Ultraman Party!

Last Saturday, MrsNordin and family organized a small birthday party for little Nizzar. He’s turning 3 tomorrow, but the long weekend made it more appropriate to do the party last Saturday.

What theme, you think? ULTRAMAN lah, of course!

The party almost did not happen because Nizzar’s mummy had exhausted all her energy in trying to find the exact items that she had wanted for the party. It was quite hard to find balloons and such in the shape of Ultraman due to the copyright control.

But I insisted on having those things. If not – No Party. I had almost given up when at the last minute, the owner of this one balloon shop told me that they do have Ultraman balloons. Yeay! Then I found another shop which had Ultraman blow ups and several other things which I could use for the party. Another Yeay!! So there was hope after all for an Ultraman Party!!

Once I found those things, then only I started the ball rolling. Everyone was pretty excited about it. MrNordin especially, which helped a great deal in thinking of the d├ęcor and guest list (and the financing, of course, but that one, we shared).

The children helped too. The girls prepared the music for the party ~ all the famous Ultraman songs in a thumbdrive. Marvellous! Nadim helped with the balloons and decor. The maid helped with the teh tarik.

I love it when everyone put in their effort and helped out whenever we do parties like these. It made me feel so happy to see all family members rallied round to make sure the party was a success. If it's not for them, the party wouldn't happen. So thanks, children!

We didn't cook any food for this one, but invited the rojak makan to come. So, the adults had cendol, rojak and mee goreng mamak prepared on the spot, whereas the children had McDonald's Kid's Meal. We had an ice cream man, too! He was on standby throughout the party, so you could just go to him and ask for an ice cream for free!

And the little boy? He was pretty excited at first, but after a while, he missed the attention from Mummy who was busy entertaining the guests. Poor guy… we found him playing alone in his room when everyone else was having a blast outside!

I think, my boy doesn’t like big crowds. He just wants all the attention to be focused on him, and him alone. Ahh…

But I picked him up later for the cake cutting. He got an Ultraman cake, and as for the presents, he got lots of Ultraman toys. Enough to keep him occupied for the next few weeks.

Actually, that little boy doesn’t really understand what the fuss was all about but he had a field day when the whole house and garden were surrounded by Ultraman paraphernalia. That's why when you asked him, “Who’s birthday is it, Nizzar?” He’d say, “Birthday Ultraman.”

Enjoy the photos!

Ultraman Blue greeted guests as they came in

He is as big as the birthday boy!

Ultraman Father (in white) and cool Ultraman masks for every child

The party venue

Bouncy castle and Ultraman balloons filled up the sky

Bouncy castle and Ultraman's tent

MrsNordin trying on the bouncy castle. Definitely not for 40 year olds, this one!

Children having fun bouncing around. MrsNordin dah terduduk!

Ultraman Kiddos (and adults)

It was quite hard to get all the kids to stay put for this photo shoot, but we managed to capture the moment somehow.

Happy Birthday, Nizzar

Ultra Nadir & Ultra Nizzar

A cousin

Another cousin

My friend Tina & her kids (I love this photo!)

The Ultraman Cake for Nizzar

Nizzar trying to pull out the Ultraman's head. Oh no!

Birthday boy and his Ultraman cake

Blowing the candle

Ultraman Mask

Ultraman Taro

Power Rangers

Another Baju Ultraman!!

MrNordin's ex-colleagues

The ice cream man on his motorbike. He was a hit!

The Party Planners