Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Labour Day

Feeling nostalgic again.....

I know I said I'd write more of the present, but I cannot help it. Its my baby's birthday. She will be 9 tomorrow. My God, how time flies......

9 years ago today, I was finalising the things I needed to pack for my admission into hospital the next day. I was going to have a new baby tomorrow! All excited, yet scared and sad under the current circumstances.

We were at the hospital earlier. He had gone to his post chemotherapy clinic review, and I went for my antenatal check up.

I laid there on the examination bed as this little human inside me moved around. I heard the familiar snapping of the gloves as my obstetrician got ready to examine me. I had done this countless of time to many of my patients, but when it came to myself, I became tense.

"Relax...." she said, the same advice I gave my patients when I did the vaginal examination. And in a blink, it was over.

"OK" she said.

"You are 4 cm dilated. Do you want to come in now and have your baby?" she asked me.

"What, now?" I asked again in disbelieve. I didn't feel any pain, but the baby was moving around a bit more than usual.

"Well, that is what 'now' usually means..." she joked back.

My head was spinning with all the things that needed to be done. The baby wasn't due until next week, and my husband was still upstairs at his clinic check-up. I needed to know how he was before I could make any decisions. Anyway, the baby was coming, either today or definitely tomorrow.

"I need to see how my husband is doing first. He is upstairs". The Obstetrician knew of his condition. She nodded.

"Well, you know the signs of active labour. Come in tomorrow, or anytime earlier if you need to." she said.

I got up (and dressed) and left after thanking her. I made my way up to the medical clinic and met him in the waiting room. He was waiting for his prescription.

"How did it go?" I asked him.

"So far the chemo is going well. If the bloods stay good, we'll have the next cycle in 2 weeks." He nodded as he spoke.

"OK." I replied. Every time he was admitted for his chemotherapy, I'd stay with him in hospital and slept on the foldable chair. The last time was a weeks ago. The chair was becoming increasingly uncomfortable as my tummy got bigger, but I didn't mind. Being with him was more important. But I'll be in confinement this time around. I started to worry as wrinkles started to form on my forhead as my eye brows started to crunch closer.

"What did the Obst say?" he asked.

"Huh?" My mind was a mile away.

"What - did - she - say?" he asked me again in single words.

"Oh...that. Yeah, I am 4 cm dilated and the baby is coming soon"

"Are you feeling ok? Do you want to be admitted today?" he asked.

"No, I am still ok. We need to get baby stuff though! Diapers and some newborn clothes." I had totally forgotten to prepare for this little one.

So, off we went to the nearest shopping mall and I went shopping! 4cm dilated and I was shopping.....Thinking back, I was a lot younger then and I felt invincible. Imagine if my membranes ruptured in the Mall.....the poor cleaner.....

But my water didn't break, and we made it home.

By that evening, contractions were coming irregularly.

As I packed my bag for tomorrow, I looked lovingly at my husband.

"She is our little unplanned gift." I whispered. He didn't hear me. He was already in deep sleep. Today's activities were a bit too much for him to handle and he needed to rest. Who will look after him in two weeks time when he goes in for another course of chemo? I prayed to Allah that I will be strong enough by then to accompany him.

9 years ago, around this time in the evening, I finished packing my bag and layed next to him as I drifted off to sleep.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Present

It has been almost a year since I started to write with the aim to help me clear my mind of clutter so I can live life in the present.

This is my 40th entry.

Most of my entries were of past reference, mainly of the loss of my dear husband and the wonderful memory of our lives together.

My past makes me who I am today.

I should start talking more of my present. Not just the morbidity of hardship, the struggles of daily living, but also of the wonders and gifts that has been given to me.

Yes, I know, the last few entries have been of confusion, frustration, feeling of senseless loss and loneliness. It reflects the uncertainty of what is happening to me now. There is more behind this story than what I was willing to reveal. But the last few days had given me a clearer picture of the entire situation.

I have met someone. He is very special to me. The burden I feel now is the burden of not being able to be with him. I've been through this before. The first separation I experienced was one that was beyond my control. Allah had taken him back. This current separation is due entirely of humanly choices. Circumstances. Darling, I know you are reading this. I also know that you know me well (and vice versa). You know what is in my head and my heart, hence I need not say more.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


I drifted around the house this evening. My motions were slow as I saw myself in a third person. I saw my hands reaching out to check the doors and windows. My feet as they stepped on the stairs. My head slowly turning to the pictures on the wall. My hands as it turned the door knob to my son's room. My fingers running through his hair as I kissed him good night.

My little girl has started sleeping in my room again. She is not well. But I think it is more for me than for her. I needed to hear sounds of life in the still night. The sound of her breathing helps. I haven't slept in over 2 nights. I didn't go to work today.

Something is not right.

I wasn't prepared to face the patients who were also in need. I couldn't put on the frontier today. I couldn't seperate personal and professional life today. I stayed home.

Everything reminds me of you.
That man that cant walk. I see you.
That man that cant eat. I see you.
That man that is in fear. I see you.
That man that is confused with what is happening to him. I see you.

I want to help them all. I feel as if I am helping you.

But, as medicine goes, not all can be cured. Not all can be helped.

I put my hand on his shoulder. He looked at me and smiled. He patted my arms. Maybe that was all he needed.

I am tired.

I cannot sleep.

I hope somebody can give me a pat on my shoulder and say that its all going to be ok.

Monday, February 9, 2009

In darkness

As the days approach the end of this current chapter, panic starts to loom. Panic occurs in reflection of ill preparation and the unseen light at the end of the tunnel. As I desperately search my way there, I find that I have gotten myself lost in the tufts of mangled thoughts and disarray. I try to breath, but I am choking in my fear.

Where do I turn to? Whom do I turn to? When your own father calls you desperate, when your own sister calls you selfish and when the person you love and depend on now becomes a burden....the weights on my shoulder sinks me into my own grave.

I know Allah is here to protect me. My Iman is not strong enough to give me comfort at the moment, as I crumble to the floor in tears.

I have never felt so alone.