Saturday, October 8, 2011

Want Vs Need.

Because we learn in Econs that human wants are inexhaustible. We should all just learn to ask for what we need only while being thankful for all we have. (Reminder to self!)

Less time in front of YouTube. More time in the sun.

It's become too chronic. Should de-activate.

Gluttony and over-full tummy. Weapons of Shaytan. 
Gotta give myself a chance to get out of my comfort zone.
If it isn't hard earned, it's not worth while right? Gotta keep swimming.
Don't need 4 or 4S, as long as I have a functional phone, all is well.
Blood, sweat and tears in this life, to reap in the Hereafter.
Guilty. Guilty. Guilty. 
Gotta shock my physical heart and my spiritual heart alive.

Courtesy to standoutsidethefire.

Pause, baby.

 From what I can gauge from conversations with my seniors, and maniacally reading their blog entries from last year, Semester Three is going to be terrifying, to say the least.

I took it for exaggeration, till mid-September struck and work came like little avalanches behind a hidden mountain. 

24 jam tak cukup. Rasa macam tengah kejar seribu satu benda, tapi last2 satu pun tak dapat *insert blood-chilling scream here*

Okay, I am a procrastinator. Hit meeeee.

 I knew that the first draft of my Extended Essay was due on the 30th, but I always assumed I'd get around to doing it. Then, it just came too fast. Lets just say, the fastest time I'd ever produced more than 10 pages of work was that few days before it was due. That week just seemed like a whirlwind, and it's not as if I could put all other work on hold. Basically, not a week I'd like to re-live. 

To mark the send off of my first draft, I decided to hit PAUSE. And because my EE advisor was on leave, my EEmates and I decided that we would kill two birds by sending our EE by hand and visit Miss Shereen (our advisor) and her new baby.

So cradling my precious first draft (which was completed 15 minutes before I left for Miss Shereen's place), my classmates and I claimed our much deserved PAUSE in our race track IB lives!

First stop: NANDOS, because you've no idea how often good food comes to mind when work seems endless and progress seems impossible i.e. when your Data Analysis sums up to only 2 words EPIC FAIL.

Before, bon proveito!


Next stop: Miss Shereen's place. Miss Shereen lives in a cosy apartment, in Seri Kembangan near The Mines (ok, that's all I initially knew!) Mind you, some of us had no clue where it was, but being IB students, lack of directions have never stood in our way!

Outside teacher's place. Gosh, the ruckus we made, you'd imagine there were 20 of us.

The delight in teachers eyes when we arrived was well worth the trip. But the best part of the trip was seeing Khadeeja Najwa, Miss Shereen's 3 week old baby,

Ain't she just a precious bundle of joy?

Having a not-so-baby brother, (he's 17, mind you) I always go a little nuts where babies are concerned. There's something about how they smell, how soft their perfect skin feels, the downy hair on their wee heads, that just puts me under their spell. 

Fact: Newborns sleep as much as 16 hours a day, in stretches of 3 to 4 hours where they wake up to drink milk.

Fact: IB students work as much as 16 hours a day, in stretches of 6 to 7 hours, and sleep 3 to 4 hours, waking up only to drink coffee.

We'll make it through IB alive! (Hiperbola gila XD)

I want a baby! But when it cries too loud, you can have her back....

Khadeeja really was a miracle. Babies never fail to make me marvel at the miracles of life, creation and The Creator. Was just therapeutic to hold her and feel her little heart beat.

We chatted with teacher, and she told us of how caring for a newborn required constant vigilance, and the sleep-eat-burp-change nappy routine they have. Teacher wonders how other mothers do it, and I immediately send out a salute to all mums out there (and to my own mum too!) for being superwomen and raising children! 

The next best thing once Khadeeja went back to sleep, was....


I'm a cat person, and seeing this furry feline specimen, I just couldn't resist the urge to grab and squeeze :D

Fur, roar. Nana and I tormenting poor Beckham.

Loved the quote that Miss Sher had in her house that said, "Cats are just little people". 

Though it was really a short visit, the relief that come by just taking a pause, made life feel much better afterwards. I'm not sure whether it was being able to cross out my EE first draft from my to-do list or just holding a baby and cats close, but sometimes, the little things in life seem to make all the more difference.

Kami dah hantar 1st draft. Anda? 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

true champions

I hate the fact that every once in a while I've to cut class or rush back home for some appointment or other. Believe it or not, there are tones of sadness underlying the initial glee of having an escape from college. I know I should be grateful for not having a life threatening or potentially fatal disease, but a minor, treatable one. I suppose fretting the fact that others don't have to go through the trouble makes me feel at a disadvantage.

I'm not a fan of illness. Thus, the whining and dread every time I've to see the doc.

It's only today when mummy and I got lost on the way to UMMC did I stop to wonder what she must feel as a parent. It's hard enough raising a headstrong, rebellious kid like me, but what does she really feel when she has to hear me complain?

What does any parent feel when they have to send their kids to the hospital? What runs through their minds when we wince because of pain? Their love runs much deeper than we know, so they must worry worse each time we're sick. And how many times have I been sick in my life? I guess that amounts to a lifetime of worry, and that's not including the times when my other siblings were sick.

Last Wednesday when I came home after UKCAT (yes, I go home a lot :D ) and I was so bummed out about my results, I never even spared a thought to how my parents felt when they saw me that way. I suppose I've always assumed that whatever success/failure in my life would be a blessing/burden that I would have to bear individually.

Boy, isn't that a fallacy.

What Miss Loh said in class really made me reflect that all actions in life reflect, to an extent on our parents. Our success would ultimately reflect on our upbringing.

So how do they feel when they give us everything within their means (and earthly bounds, of course) and we don't give them what they duly deserve in return?

How many times have our parents supported us, sacrificed for us, suffered because of us, just to see us succeed in this world and the hereafter? How many times have we made them feel like they succeeded? 

I recall the time daddy got a call that I was admitted in HKB and he drove all the way from KL  after work just to be there. The way daddy cooks up every gastronomical craving I've ever had. Daddy's diligence, the way he's a rock, for me to lean on, always. His determination to provide a good education for  me for this world and the next pushed me to work hard all my life.

Then I remember how idiotic I was when I used to vilify him because I took his aspirations for me as stifling expectations of a cold authoritarian.

No exam, test, stressful day when I can't wrap my head on freight rates link to shifting demand curves, would pass without calling mummy. Mummy can give the Juggler at a circus a run for his money the way she manouvered her kids and her job. She wants the best from me, but never at the cost of my own happiness.

And ugly flashes of how I used to raise my voice at her. The ungrateful wretch I am when I take for granted everything she fought so hard to give me.

I'm really sorry mummy and daddy.

It's true that our parents deserve the award more than us sometimes. Truly, the best way to do that is by striving hard for success and Allah's pleasure. I'm sure there's nothing more they want than for us to be really good Muslims.

So here's to mine. I love my mummy and daddy, and you should too!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Death of Feeling.

Many are the Jinns and men we have made for Hell: They have hearts with which they do not understand, eyes with which they do not see, and ears with which they do not hear. They are like cattle,- nay more misguided: for they are heedless (of warning).(Al-Araf, 179)
Such are those whose hearts, ears, and eyes have been sealed up by Allah, and they take no heed. (An-Nahl, 108)

I remember the post-op feeling. I would describe it simply as feeling like death warmed over. I could tolerate the way my body felt weak and fragile but I hated the way my insides churned and threatened to spill out everything, even if there wasn’t anything to hurl out. Ops, any ops, involve cutting and scarring, ultimately leading to pain. Even being forewarned didn’t make the hurt less. Solace, would come 3 times a day in the form of Tramal. A painkiller, not so high up the dosage ladder to be equivalent to morphine or novacaine, but lovely nonetheless. It made you slightly dizzy, sluggish, and best of all: numb.
It’s been 3 years, so I doubt that it’s come back to haunt me. So why do I feel this way? Drugs mess up your neurotransmitters, making you feel continual or minimal physical stimulation. That’s why they’re bad. But what about the things that numb you inside? Are those bad for you too? I can’t quite put my finger on it, but I’ve nothing to feel except apathy. Deep-rooted nothingness.

 They say: 
“It’s your third semester for crying out loud!”
"Hmm ye lah...."

I’m not an ignoramus. I see the work, I see the deadlines, I see the stress, I just can’t really feel it. This isn’t like rebellion where I get angry, ticked off or get vengeful which would trigger strong responses and productive actions. It’s worse because I do feel all the above, but for an hour, an afternoon, a day at most, then I’m back to being completely feeling-less. I drift through the whole day, wishing it would end, anticipating the dim welcome of my room and the cramped hospitality of my study carrel. Then when the day does end, and I’m sitting there, I get restless and look forward to the next day.

Even Louie has feelings. I've lost to my CAT.

                I know this is bad. Pain, joy, laughter, sadness, stress. They’re all feelings put in me for a reason. It’s come to a point where even my relationship with Him becomes perfunctory, a requirement of the day that I neither seek nor loathe. I get upset that I try to rekindle some sort of feeling; excitement, remorse, longing, Anything, but like I said, even this feeling becomes a temporary phase. I read about empty shell people. The ones who go through life searching for temporary highs because they’re lives are purposeless. Going on a path with no beliefs steering them.
I don’t want to be them. I know my purpose in life. Or so I think?

The distinction between waking and sleeping is the senses and sensations you feel. I’m not saying I experience this, but wouldn’t it be awful frightful if both seem the same? Like being on a beach staring at the horizon, looking so far out that you can’t discern sea and sky. They have just blended in to become one big blue blur. That really isn’t how life should be.

Weariness, indifference or dullness are then the typical characteristics of the unbelievers. Believers, on the other hand, are extremely careful, attentive and alert and also encourage other believers with their enthusiasm.

 I fear that because of my sins, my heart has been shut. Locked and hardened due to my own boastfulness and vainglory. Astaghfirullah, I fear for the sake of my eternal soul. I pop pills for known ailments, but I can’t hope the same for emotional ones.
 I’m even posting this up because I really don’t bother with who reads this or what people would like to think. I suppose I should probably finish off my EE and if I don’t feel any joy when I click the “Print” button then I might as well dig a hole in the ground ASAP. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

10 Reasons Why I Fell For Him.

10 Reasons to Fall for Prophet Muhammad SAW

1. His Human Self

He was never distant from humanity. He smiled, loved, cried and felt pain. He walked, moved, ate and showered. He was a human prophet, not an angelic prophet, so it is really applicable to follow him as a role model.
When I make a mistake or become a bit lazy about being good, Prophet Muhammad’s real model takes me back to the right track. I tell myself: “He was human, to make it easy for us. It was also difficult for him, but he made it. So, I will try again, and I will make it as he did.”

2. His Fatherhood

His fatherhood , to Lady Fatimah, has always amazed me. In a society that degraded women and rejected the birth of females to the extent that they would bury them alive, he cherished all his daughters, and specially Lady Fatimah.
She was the closest to his heart. Whenever she would drop in on one of his meetings, he wouldn’t ever ask her to leave, because he was busy. But, he would stand up in “cherishing respect” and move to welcome her, so she wouldn’t be embarrassed. Then he would kiss her on her forehead and have her seated next to him.

3. His Loyal Love to Lady Khadijah

The way he continued to love and cherish Lady Khadijah after her death has always been an expression of devotion in my eyes. During her life, they lived in a society that accepted multiple marriages for men, which would extend to endless numbers of wives for one man. Though she was much older than him, for 25 years, he never went for another marriage with any another woman.
He respected and loved his wife dearly. He cherished her days dearly after her death and expressed his longing to her days by cherishing her friends. He would sit around with her best friend for long hours chatting about “Khadijah’s good old days”.

4. His Patience at the Deaths of his Children

His children’s deaths have always caused my heart to ache. We might theorize a lot or preach a lot about the patience of prophets, but do we really feel it? I keep on wondering how this lovely tender man tolerated the death of all his children, all except one, in his lifetime. How would any father feel, when he reaches his sixties and finds himself burying a child after the other?
Prophet Muhammad’s patience never contradicted his sadness and grief. He grieved and experienced deep sadness. When his babyson Ibrahim died, he grieved deeply. He held him in his arms at his death-bed and cried. He uttered only words that expressed his patience that was mixed with his sadness.
His words reflected that, when he uttered his famous words: “The heart grieves, the eye tears, and for your departure, Ibrahim, we are sad. But the tongue never utters an objection that wouldn’t please God.” How sad!

5. He Was Such a Tender Grandfather

That has always taken my heart! Whenever I think of how busy and important a man he was, and yet had time space and emotions to spare for his grandchildren. The idea that when he stood on the podium, giving the Friday sermon, he simply interrupted his speech in front of the Muslim nation audience — at the time — and went down the podium to pick up his grandson, is always startling from my point of view.
The fact that he would keep carrying this grandson throughout his speech is again startling. I mean, he was the spiritual, social and political leader of the nation! What would any of our grandfathers have done if we simply burst into any of their meetings? I wonder.

6. His Sincere Appreciation of the Feelings of Others

The way he honestly shared feelings with others has always stopped me. In particular, the way he dealt with the feeling of a child. That child used to have a pet bird. Whenever Prophet Muhammad passed by the child, he would ask him about his pet bird.
One day, the Prophet passed by the child and found him crying because of the death of his pet. Prophet Muhammad simply interrupted his journey to whatever errand he was going to, and sat with the child to offer his condolences. It was reported that he stayed with him for a long time to soothe him.
If he was not Prophet Muhammad, again I would fall for him for this incident. What a sweet-hearted man, who simply neglects his important errands or meetings to sit around a child who lost a pet. He didn’t actually lose his mother, but he simply lost a bird. But Prophet Muhammad didn’t see it to be a simple loss. He understood what this loss meant to the child and felt for his pain.

7. The Prophet’s Smile & Sense of Humor

On a personal basis, I really love this. Maybe it is because personally I love to smile, and to wipe away tears and pain by lots of smiles and spreading the spirit of happiness and cheerfulness around. It is a characteristic that my inner self reconciles with in the character of Prophet Muhammad.
All mankind encounters pain and agony, just as he did. Some people face our worldly troubles by crying their tears out. Others are always expressing objection and un-acceptance of their destiny. A third party would simply frown in the face of the world and neglect its feeling. But Prophet Muhammad never did.
He was the most agonized person. He was an orphan. He was poor. He lost his beloved wife Khadijah. He was loaded with the responsibility of the divine message and with the responsibility of running a newly established state. Let alone his personal human sufferings.
Yet, he never frowned in the face of the world. He never objected to what God destined for him. He simply kept his smile and tender care for others, no matter what he went through. I pray I can keep up with him. I am not sure I can, but at least I should keep trying.

8. His Role Model as a Servant of God & Worshipper

Prophet Muhammad’s role model as a servant of God and worshipper is an aspect of his character that any human who wants to serve God can reconcile with. He was a man who fasted most of his days, prayed most of his nights and spent all what he had for the sake of his beloved Creator.
Yet, when some of his Companions wanted to fast all days and never eat during daylight, pray all nights and never sleep at night, or abstain from marriage and lawful relations with women, he objected to that.
He explained to his Companions that he fasted some days and broke his fast on other days, he prayed much of his night time and yet he slept at night, and that he simply — like any other man — married and enjoyed marital life.
I think this is a much easier and a more practical example to follow, if we want to be good. The examples of complete self-denial and inhumanly extreme attitudes by some complete self-denial and saints and good ones isn’t really practical for all mankind. But any person, man or woman can follow the steps of Prophet Muhammad; be a spiritual worshipper and a good human simultaneously.

9. His Tenderness & Mercy Towards Animals

Again, a very personal characteristic that has always touched my heart, was his tenderness and mercy towards animals. He treated them as communities that had social ties, just as humans are to be treated.
Once, when he was travelling, some of his companions caught two young birds. Then the mother flew above their heads wailing for her two children. Prophet Muhammad immediately reacted and asked who had hurt this mother by taking her children? He ordered the two birds given back to their mother on the spot.
Thinking sincerely and deeply of animals as creatures who feel emotions, not only physics, he banned the slaughtering of any animal in front of the other. He ordered a quick death with a sharp knife away from the other animals, so that the living ones would not feel fear or panic.
He also ordered that hunting or slaughtering animals should always be for the sake and need of nutrition. He completely abandoned learning hunting or shooting by taking innocent animals as trial preys.
As an animal lover and friend who has experienced the closeness of animals, I understand what this attitude means to animals. I love animals and those who are good to animals, what about a prophet who is that good to animals? He was a prophet who cared for animals’ feelings and psychological states, and never regarded them as un-feeling bodies or unemotional creatures.

10. His Romantic Love for Lady Aishah

Last, but not least, his romantic love for Lady Aishah has always amazed me. Honestly speaking, I find this relation much more romantic than many love stories that were famous throughout history and literature of love. I mean, they were real! Many of the famous stories are novels, tales, and simply stories.
But, Prophet Muhammad and Lady Aishah’s love was real. They lived it, cherished it and practiced it, down to earth in their daily life. He loved her dearly and passionately, and she loved him back.
She — like any normal, loving woman — felt jealous for him and expressed that obviously. He also felt jealous —like any normal, loving man — and expressed it obviously. They were human in their love, not angelic.
I always recall his habit of drinking after her and I pause to smile at this habit of his. He used to search for the part that touched her lips from the utensil she used in drinking. Then, he would specifically touch the same part with his lips when he would drink. He simply enjoyed feeling her warmth.
Yet, despite his deep love to her, and his genuine passion towards her, he never permitted this love to make him neglect his duties or role as a prophet and worshipper. He would leave her warm side in the middle of the night and take her permission to pray. He would tenderly ask her: “Let me stand for my God an hour in prayers.” And, she would let him willingly and lovingly.
They lived love in their daily moments and they practiced it in every action. Their story of love did not stop at their lively moments, but continued till they departed.
Again, it has always amazed me and touched my heart deeply the moment of the Prophet’s death. It was when he chose to depart the world from her house. He chose to go there when he felt death approaching.
And, then, at the moment of death, he chose to lean his head between her arms and to depart from there. Her hugging arms were the last he encountered in our world.

Having said so little in the love of the man who deserves much more, I am not at all satisfied. Yet, I have to sum up my words.
Ten, I was asked to write, and ten I have written. But, I have written so little, I know, in a man who I should write down hundreds of reasons to fall for. But history has written hundreds and thousands of books about the great man. And history will keep writing.
He is a man who does not need me to write about him. I was the one who needed to write, about the man who clearly showed me the way. Maybe this is really why I love him that much. Peace and blessings be upon you, my beloved Prophet.

f: Reblogged from him :)

Friday, July 29, 2011

July: Sunshine & Dust.

July was really quick, a whirlwind of emotions and a truckload of work. Regretfully, I look back and see that I've forgotten. I suppose the absence of writing, and self-evaluation (muhasabah) really made this month macam tak dihayati langsung, padahal it was Syaaban, the month to prepare for Ramadhan. 

"Sesungguhnya orang-orang yang beriman, dan orang-orang yang berhijrah dan orang-orang yang berjihad di jalan Allah, mereka itu yang mengharapkan rahmat Allah. Allah Maha Pengampun, lagi Maha Penyayang" 2:218 - Kak Sikin's text, the 2nd.

We were kept guessing whether Mock Interview was really on, and when it was finalized, Leka called and told me that my turn was on the 4th. Coincidentally, I had an appointment at 9.00 am at UMMC and my interview was at 2.40 pm. Can't even begin to describe the jitters and the rush of things going on in my head. Alhamdulillah, met Dian who told me what to expect with Mr Neil Sutherland. 
Frantic Googling, calling and berkat doa Mummy, my interview that day went well. 

Charming Mr Neil, who encouraged me to go to Scotland just cause he's from there!

Alhamdulillah, came out of Mawar 2 really feeling like it was the 4th of July. Cue the fireworks! All I can say is that Mr Neil really spelled out what to expect for the real deal, and gaining his vote of confidence was something I needed. 

"Inshaallah, kita sama-sama mencari cintaNya, jemputlah datang petang ni" - Ekin, the 5th.
I took a leap of faith, literally. Dirinya dah lama sedar, just kesedaran untuk bergerak tu datang dengan keraguan. Alhamdulillah, dah settle dah semua :) Jazakallah, Hana Reza :)

Do you know how proud a sister can be? Madam Zakiah texted me on the 11th to tell me that my little brother won Inter-MRSM Public Speaking. Remembering his paranoia about an unfinished text and being ill-prepared made me laugh thinking how he can really exaggerate, like another member of his family. 

Went back to UMMC on the 13th. Memang betul, manusia will never be able to be truly grateful for everything that Allah has given to them for free. I feel that is the reason he tries us with sickness, so that I can really appreciate health and Him.

Went to Floria on the 16th with Nenek :) I tell you Nenek is one in a million and I love her, thick Kelantanese accent and all. 

Ok, IB Kitten, I know what you mean!

Ok Semester 3, I feel the pain already ok? 17th-20th July. Math Portfolio FEVER. I deeply apologize to all the trees that died to make Double A papers because I wasted a whole lot of 'em. Was partway done when I showed my Math teacher on Monday (the thing was due on Wednesday).

She took one look at my hard efforts experimenting with Geogebra (you have points for usage of technology) and said, " This is not technology, this is just a drawing.


You know the IB joke that says "You know you're in IB when you look at the clock and don't count how many hours to sleep, but how many hours to finish your homework" ? All the girls of M10A will testify that this is true. 

2 days of intense stressing, head banging, all nighters at the TV room and finally, at 5.07 am, 20/7/2011 my portfolio was complete. 2 laptops syahid after overuse of this 

They say that unity comes in times of adversity right? I saw people discussing GGB in the loo, the common room, TV room and the para was filled with people frantically doing their portfolios up until 7.30 am.  Who will forget the zombie looks from the SL students, the way our teachers scolded us for falling asleep, the mindless things you say when you're so terribly sleepy, the unnatural hush in the block on Wednesday when it was all over. The comfort of my bed was never apparent until that evening on the 20th.

And that was only Type I. Can't wait for Type II.

It really taught me to hold my temper. Sorry for those who kena sembur that week. SO SORRY! The people who are strong are not the ones who can fight other people, but the ones who can hold in their anger. I remember reading that ulamas want to get angry because they relish the chance to swallow their anger and the blessing that occurs in that act. Goes to show that masih jauh lagi perjalanan untuk baiki diri ni.... People get really cranky when they don't get sleep. Fights broke out, and true characters revealed. Can't say I've quite gotten over that realization. 

24th was the first time in a while that I adjudicated debate after lying dormant so long. Ridhuan and I were super stoked but thanks to a killer migraine, didn't quite get the buzz and high that usually accompanies the word "DEBATE!". I even slept through the "Rich, Ugly VS Poor, Handsome" motion. Perhaps I prefer being the debater rather than adju-ing. Can't wait to resurrect my debate alter ego for Tunku Naqiyuddin in September! Mike we so have to kick ass!

22-23rd of July was another whirlwind weekend! 

Ran off to KLIA after usrah to celebrate the homecoming of one of my PC darlings, Ummu 'Ammarah. Waiting 1.5 hours was nothing compared to the feeling that day when Wani, Hana, Kelly and I got to hug her. MRSM may have ended, but I pray that we never will.


23rd brought guilt and resolutions to finish my EE as English EEers had our workshop. The moment the clock struck 1 pm, I left the LT, got in a cab and went straight to KLIA (again!) to send my parents and sister off to umrah. Then at 2 got into the ERL to head for Seha's kenduri.

Seha and I have been friends since Day 1, 3 years ago. Nak cakap the things that we've been through would need a whole blog post but the thought of her jetting off to Purdue University without me kinda makes me sad. We all need to grow up kan? Bak kata Seha "Nasib baik aku masuk PC, kalau tak aku tak tahu camne nak hidup."  So true. Have a safe journey sayang, never forget your niat, Allah and please study!

26th-28th was the Banting Extended Experience (BEE) exposure for us KMBians. The Uni Fair was my highlight and God willing, if I were given the chance to fly to the UK or Eire, I think I've my choices made up. Many thanks seniors! 

I've no clue why this Sem I've become the next candidate for teenage rebellion. Skived Wed's BEE session to go to KLCC. Yes, on a weekday! To fix a laptop, Nana, Yana, Fasha and I went gallivanting and spent 7 hours there. I think stress really got the better of us and the need to escape was at an all time high! 2 meals, 3 desserts, window shopping and we were as good as new. Mind you Nana and I didn't even get started on our lab reports yet at the time. Juniors, don't do this ok? 

KLCC was epic (reverence intended). Got to bid farewell to my arch nemesis turned good friend Reza before he left for Berkeley (good luck, genius). Why is everyone flying off? Even stumbled upon Kak Safhan back from McGill. Boy, was she an inspiration *winks*

Studies wise:
1. I can't get vectors no matter how many times you explain. Oh help.
2. Bio is cool now as it's all about cells, and immunity, and no icky plant biology.
3. ORGANIC CHEMISTRY, I loike! Though I'm still unsure how to familiarize myself with the new faces of aldehydes, ketones, amines, amides. 
4. Protectionism, Trade Barriers & Economic Integration. Now I can finally talk to Mummy intelligently and comprehend articles in StarBiz. So glad I didn't opt for BMS. 
5. Blurb, strapline, wire copy. Can't believe I've been reading papers all this while without even knowing the existence of these things. 
6. "Akan kutenun awan gemawan menjadi selendang menudungi rambutmu..." Never been a fan of sajak but the enthusiasm Mr Azha has when he teaches makes me sure that I'm going to like it.

Now on the 30th, one day from Ramadhan, I'm documenting all this month has been in hopes that this coming Holy month will be so much better.

It may have been a month lacking in remembrance, but the only thing I can do is end it with Ramadhan resolutions and belief that regardless of everything,

Friday, July 8, 2011

When F becomes S.

 “To meet Triumph and Disaster, and treat those two impostors just the same” – Rudyard Kipling.

I always stumble on blogs advising me on how to handle disaster, impending doom and omg-it’s-the-end-of-the-world situations (being one of the people who contribute to blogs of this sort myself hehe) Reflecting on my own posts, when the success I’ve coveted finally arrives, the usual expressions would be THANK GOD I DID IT followed by a whole row of !!!!!!!!!!! and words like YES I AM SOOOOO HAPPY.

Semester 2 was tough to say the least. It was a sort of a now or never moment for me. Losing everyone’s respect when you don’t perform is not as bad as losing respect for yourself because you know you didn’t try as hard as they did.

The best thing about not making it in the beginning is the chance it gave me to really reflect on every single factor in my life and try to get it in tip top shape again. 

There were moments when I’d just choke, especially close to the exams when I had no definite bedtime and every single hour slept felt like a golden opportunity to study that I missed out upon. 

Getting paranoid, staying up till 7 am then wondering, should I go to sleep or continue with my usual morning routine? 

No matter how hard it got, knowing that Allah was there for me every second, with me every time I stumbled on Econs, knowing that He knows how bad I was at Kinetics and how I was always so careless in Math. Talking to Him became easy, searching for His love came naturally. When exams ended, I left it all in His hands. I had done my part, and He would definitely give me what’s best.

Praises to Him who holds dominion over all, when results came out, the most satisfying part was knowing that I had given it my best.

 I’m not this completely objective being. I didn’t view it as a test at all. In fact, I was down in the dumps for quite a while that I didn’t really know how to react. 

The heady mix of praises, shock and egoistical thoughts went straight to my head and I lost my grip. Who am I kidding when I think that I owe my success to myself?
“When harm touched man, he calls to Us (for help); then when We have (rescued from him that harm and) changed it into a favour from Us, he says: “Only because of knowledge (that I possess) I obtained it.” Nay, it is only a trial, but most of them know not!” 39:49
Yeah, I’ll say it to myself, “IN YOUR FACE!” This is why success is way more potentially harmful to anyone. You start to think that you’re the best, and belittle others in your eyes. 

The tendency to exude self-appraisal and carry round an inflated head between your shoulders is very high. In failure, when you’re all alone, and He’s the most comforting thought you have, you invest all your attention on Him. Success focuses attention on you, so you’d spend less attention focusing on Him.

It’s a sobering thought. Make no mistake, I am thankful for all Allah’s given me I gotta remember that it belongs to Him. He can take it away in an instant, and I’d be way better off without it if it leads me down the expressway to the dark side.

This week’s good news came unexpectedly and I can feel Him watching the way I’m going to go about it. 

I’m beginning to dread the moment when someone asks or telling people because I’m too susceptible to the Big Headed Syndrome. I feel like an idiot when people praise me because as the Prophet mentioned, it’s the worst thing you can do to a friend, equivalent to cutting off their neck. 

It’s such an awkward situation, and I know by experience that most of the people congratulating you won’t give a care once your down and won’t even lend a hand when they see you like that.

 Success is a double edged sword. Failure isn’t a lasting phase. 

Both are trials, bear them both well, for He’s observing you, that’s all I’m trying to say.

And Alhamdulillah, dear Allah, I’m really thankful for the results, the interview, the IELTS and the awareness to know that it was You who set it all up. 

Monday, June 20, 2011


I want to open my hijab,
and show the world,
that I too,
am beautiful in the people’s definition.
deep down here,
in my little heart,
I know that beauty is by definition,
a mystery.
and it is forever more rewarding,
to be beautiful in God’s eyes.
I want to wear ruffled dresses and tight jeans,
show off what I really look like,
under those baggy shirts and loosely fitted pants,
make a statement,
that I too,
have a figure and worth looking at.
I know better,
to avoid entering the world of men’s imagination,
for I love my future husband,
and I am ashamed,
what should be his, has already been unveiled by others.
I want to show the world,
the other side of me,
the bubblier, bolder, and crazier me.
put myself on display,
for everyone to see,
to be desired, and admired upon.
I know that eyes are not just eyes,
seeing is not just seeing,
image and respect are gained,
shame and humility deserve a better place,
Because in the end,
it is not just about me,
I carry a lot of impressions and expectations,
of what a Muslim girl should be,
I am covered by the word “Islam” the moment I walk out of my door,
So don’t be selfish girl,
Can’t you put behind your heart’s desire for something worth fighting for?
Love is all it takes.
InshaAllah- Via Javanicusmuslima @ tumblr.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

So much for 3 weeks.

Challenged is how people progress the best. 

I know my challenge is moving internal pebbles which represent laziness, procrastination and despair. 
Though these are nothing compared to the literal boulders that youth in Tunisia, in Egypt moved when they stood shoulder to shoulder, and channeled the power they had to fight for a better tomorrow. 

My pebbles would be crushed underfoot by the Herculean youth in Palestine who run to the battlefront that lies in their backyard for the sake of their lives.

Yet they remain there. My pebbles. 

Which from the looks of it have grown into monoliths due to the holiday season. 

I don't think carrying these "pebbles" into semester 3 is such a good idea. After all, they could just become stumbling blocks or even back breakers that kill me in the days to come.

This realization is a tad bit late, as I can already feel the tentacles of Semester 3, reaching out and pulling me in. My "pebbles" remain glued to me. This cannot be. Why is it so hard?? 

I know I'm heading for doom, going back to college with a checklist with no checks, a heavy heart and a brain filled with fluff. 

It seems like the only thing that can set me going is the fast paced ticking of the clock. 


It seems that if I don't crush my "pebbles", they might just crush me.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

KMB & IB, an unbiased perspective for juniors.

Dedicated to the juniors asking me about IB and Kolej MARA Banting.

Cautionary note: None of you are allowed to cast this up to me/ blame me for this in the future.

I shall try to be as objective and unbiased as possible, but, as you will soon learn in TOK, as humans this is not completely achievable.

The Program

The IB Diploma Programme is designed as an academically challenging and balanced programme of education with final examinations that prepares students, normally aged 16 to 19, for success at university and life beyond. The programme is normally taught over two years and has gained recognition and respect from the world's leading universities.
Through the IB Diploma Programme, students gain rigorous and balanced academic preparation, an ability to draw on knowledge and understanding of various cultures and histories, and the experience of learning how to think critically and apply what they have learned in different contexts and across disciplines.
The IB understands that success in higher education and beyond involves thinking critically and creatively. The IB Diploma Programme’s challenging curriculum educates the whole student, developing the capacity for inquiry, research and problem-solving as well as essential skills for communication and collaboration
To summarize, it means that IB is focused on more than academic achievement only.
If you're studying style is pretty much like SPM, A-Levels is a better choice cuz it is academic oriented and your subject combinations are focused on your field of choice. 
If you're looking to be all-rounded students and are interested in concerning yourself with more than just studies, than IB's just the thing for you.

Kolej MARA Banting itself.

Studying at KMB: 

MARA offers:
Medicine (bound to any of the following: UK, Ire, Aus, NZ, India, NuMed, PMC, IMU etc) 
Engineering (bound to UK, US, Canada, Aus etc)
Biotech (UK, US, Canada, Aus etc) 
Economics/Finance (bound to US)

JPA offers:
Medicine, Dentistry and Engineering

Petronas offers:
Geology, Petroleum Engineering (bound to Canada, US)

FELDA offers:
Biotech, Engineering 

The class system is Monday-Thursday, 8.00-2.20pm on CAS week or 8.00-1.30 for non-CAS week. Fridays is till 12.30. The system is a lot like school BUT do not mistaken the subjects or the teaching style or workload to be like SPM again. Paradigms have to be shifted, no matter how much this place feels like school, it is, in its essence a college, and thus demands more from you.

Living in the College

Ex-boarding schoolers should have no problem. KMB's pretty great for boarding school standards.

Laundry service is STELLAR! The Ko-op and the Cafe and DS food provides enough sustenance for 2 years (ha, I hope!) There's a gym, excellent jogging track, 2 people per room....

If you're expecting private college comforts, this ain't the place to go. The key is to focus on why you've come and be thankful :)

The community is very supportive, especially spiritually. One of the reasons I'm most thankful for KMB.

No matter what you hear, if you do get IB, it proves you're tough and can withstand anything IB throws at you. 

I look at my seniors and I see heroes and warriors who've held strong and made it all the way to the very last hurdle. Drawing inspiration from them, I'm sure if you've landed in KMByou're going to be a survivor too!

10 things I love About KMB

10. Breathtaking views during sunset and sunrise! And the rainbows....
9. Uplifting Usrahs
8. Doing class projects (G4, International Fair) when everyone's stressing out at the concourse, while setting up our boards
7. There's a different week all the time (Int. Fair, Mental Health, BM, Social Sc....)
6. When mak cik DS lets you take 2nd helpings of kuih if you ask her nicely :)
5. The way so many things happen in one week that last week seems like a lifetime ago
4.Co-Q class (terbaikkkkk cause we haven't had one this semester!)
3. The really nice Lab Assistants and LRC librarians (such sweet people)
2. Thursday night ceramah
1. The teachers who stay on till 5.30 just to help you during consultation. Really the most dedicated ones I've ever met. 

Additional Components
Lets just say, this can be pure pleasure or pain depending on how your outlook on life is.

Creativity. Action. Service. 
This would be your thing if you want to fill your college days with meaningful/creative/challenging experiences outside the classroom.
The best part of IB to me. I know 180 hours seems like a bulk, but it really isn't. Mr Latiff's favourite quote on CAS: "4-5 hours a week and continuous involvement!"

Who's Mr Latif? Come to KMB and meet him yourself.

You get to work with kids with special needs, teach Orang Asli kids, and help out people with Downs' syndrome fortnightly for External CAS (which is one school day where you go out and be help out the community!Wicked, no? I'm going to miss CAS day)

There are the usual sports clubs, with a few cool additions like lawn bowl, and FRISBEE (my current fave) and other clubs like GEM, Performing Arts, English Club, Creative Club, HOPE, Taska etc. If you're really enthusiastic, there's stuff like Fish4Life, Cambodian Project, Sehati Serumpun, Love Symphony and Smiling Soul which are different groups who organize their own service projects overseas (Cambodia, Indonesia, Vietnam) and locally (Sabah).

There are competitions, and activities organized by clubs, and you'll never have nothing to do in the IB. It will never leave you alone. Seriously.

Theory of Knowledge.

Don't worry if you're first response to this was "Heh?!" I've been at it close to a year and it still never fails to make me go "HEH?!" often. It's basically like philosophy and aims to try to get students to THINK.

Which we're surprisingly terrible at. Reminds me of the joke that says Malaysian brains are the most expensive. Why? Because it's rarely used. =___=

You get to question knowledge, in all areas, and discover the ways of knowing and your perception of the world will change.

And your perception of the word "perception" will too.

You don't have TOK exams, but you have to submit a TOK essay on any of the 10 prescribed titles and you'll have to do a presentation which will be recorded and sent to the IBO. All this accounts and EE accounts for the 3 marks in your final IB exam.


Extended Essay.
For all the ex-MRSM-ers, it's akin to Project SEM, only longer, more specific.
It's a research paper done in any subject that you take that analyses elements of that subject.

Like you could do research on Bio about the effect of acid rain on the growth of Mung beans. Gotta be more specific though.

Or you could do one in the languages, like English, and compare the syntax and diction of 2 magazines in Malaysia and how it appeals to teens.

(These are just examples of EEs done by seniors so no plagiarism here)

Your research has got to be 4000 words and has to be thorough and contributes to society in some way. 

EE will introduce you to a handful of emotions you never knew you possessed. (And I haven't even gone pass the table of contents yet ...)

World Literature 

In Malay A1, you learn world literature novels in your 2nd sem so at the end of it you have to produce 1200-1500 words on a comparison of 2 of the novels you learnt.

I love learning the novels in IB, simply because it's like actual literature, where you're free to interpret and analyze without having to memorize the given themes and other aspects from reference books. The novels themselves are, well, matured to say the least like Madam Bovary, Great Gatsby, Pride and Prejudice etc. You really get different insights from all over the world as it stresses on Cultural Interactions

There are other parts of IB but I can't expose too much for fear of allergic afflictions and premature panic. (I remember panicking myself when I first heard about IB...)

IB will give you plenty of moments to make memories. When you solat berjemaah, study berjemaah, stress berjemaah, you realize that you're not alone on this journey.  

Any further questions, just drop 'em in the FB inbox. See you loves in June. Secretly, the would-be seniors are anxious to see which one of you guys will take our place and join us in this IB World School.