Saturday, 23 April 2016

Nenek

"Confined in a room, I was awake, keeping an eye on my grandmother who was lying in the hospital bed, frail and waxen. She was in for an angiogram the next day, before the physician recommended an angioplasty for her. I was supposed to provide some words of comfort to calm her down but I let my emotions get the better of me. My grandmother was anything but calm. Following this failure, I realised that this job is not for the fainthearted (i.e. me)."

That's the opening of my Personal Statement when I was applying for university through UCAS.

My post-SPM days centred around fending for my Nenek in the cold room at IJN. The night before her scheduled angiogram, I couldn't have a shut eye. Every inch of me was consumed with worry, as I read about angiogram on one website after another. I was 17 then. What would a 17-year-old girl know about angio whatever? But I had to power through the articles, in my last-ditch attempt to comprehend what my Nenek was about to go through the next day. I had to assimilate the medical jargon of the articles and paraphrased it into layman terms so that I could explain to Nenek, I mean, how hard can it be right. Femoral artery? Left Anterior Descending Artery? What the actual hell?

The nurses coming in every few hours to check her vital signs only wreaked havoc in me.

The next morning came. As I wrote in my Personal Statement, I was of no help to placate my terrified Nenek. When they wheeled her bed into the operating theatre, I said nothing. At all. I just waved at her, and later mocked myself endlessly, why the hell did I wave at Nenek?! As if to say goodbye because she wouldn't make it through the procedure?! Clearly I lack the tact to be a doctor...

So that, kids, was how Nenek made me decide not to do medicine.



"But one year later and surprise! Here I am, deciding to study medicine."

Another line from my Personal Statement.




Long story short, yeah, I chose this path. But still, a small conundrum took residence in a corner of my head. Is this really for me? Really? Maybe I'm not cut out for this.

"Before exams ended, I couldn't wait for them to be over. I was imagining days ahead of A Level, all the post A2 activities that I assure myself to be exhilarating, the self pampering I promised to my body, the treats I think I'm entitled to. Now that I have gained the ultimate freedom that I was eagerly waiting for, it seems illusory.

On Saturday I graduated, tapped my student ID for the last time and bade adieu to the blue college. Immediately that evening I went to DEMC to pay Nenek a visit. She'd fallen and got herself a neck of femur fracture (the doctors decided to implant a dynamic hip screw on her). Eversince, I've been practically living off of Gloria Jeans on the ground floor of the hospital. So far my post A Level days are days of fending for my bedridden Nenek. Not that I'm implying she's at fault, it's just that I feel like I'm missing out on things. I feel like I've been estranged from my best friends. God knows when was the last time I hung out with Atika. Or the last time Amie and I had our minum petang together. 

I could be doing all those fun things, instead, I was asked to ensure Nenek takes all her medications, does her breathing exercises, goes to physio sessions religiously, has her compression stockings on. But all these turned into frolics because Nenek, oh my God, Nenek had her ways alright. She came up with 1001 hilarious excuses not to do everything the doctor asked her to do. One time she hid her tablets underneath the pillow. I wanted to scold her, only to be in stitches when she pulled a long face afterwards while complaining that I'm too garang. And then the doctor came and scolded me instead, while Nenek put her poker face on display, pfth. 

So I had to find a way to make her comply with doctor's orders, but without patronising her. I know it's painful for her, but it's imperative. My heart broke when I saw her face flinch at the slightest movement, but if she didn't try to move now, she'll never be mobile ever again. It was like teaching a baby to take her first steps all over again, but this was one old, giant, whiny baby who just wanted to watch her Indonesian sinetrons on tv. Man, it wasn't easy, but with Nenek, it was fun. Whatever consternation I had in the previous paragraph vanished into thin air, because I witnessed Nenek's recovery with my own eyes. Seeing Nenek loading herself from the hospital bed to the wheelchair, seeing her breathing get steadier & her inhalation longer, the feeling was sublime. I think I was the one who's more enthused about her finally getting on the wheelchair, I even pushed her out of the ward to say hi to the nurses, and then I pushed her to the lounge area near the lift where there's a huge window there, so she could see outside, after days of being cooped up in the ward. I was glad that for all Nenek's recovery milestones, I was there by her side, cheering her on, and recording her on my phone. I hope I never forget this feeling."

One of my old blog posts from 2014.

So that, kids, was how Nenek reassured me that medicine is the one for me.

Happy birthday to the bionic woman (because she has metal pieces on her hip now hehe), my most beloved Nenek, without whom my Personal Statement would probably be bland & the uni admission team would probably just toss my application in the bin & I probably wouldn't be where I am now haha! Ugh. I wish flight tickets are cheap so that I can come back to Malaysia every week to make sure Nenek's taking all her medications right.

Ah yes, I used to be skinny, guys. Look at Nenek's unimpressed face because I forced her to put on her tudung for this quick photo heheh.



Guys, my nenek has this Wardrobe Mismatch Syndrome. Exhibit A : Blue tudung + green baju kurung. I always nag her about this but she just never listens.

That time Nenek got sucked into the Looms craze vortex with my little cousins....


Monday, 11 April 2016

Emma-less, Ulfah-ful

Ulfah's back from her Easter trip!!

"Dah lama I tak dengar lagu tu." she said when she heard me singing Beautiful not long after she came back. Both Ulfah and Emma can sing along with me now whenever I sing that song out of habit. Fuh, KHouse can be the next KPop group to debut, how does that sound? Hehe.

The next day we sent Emma off at the airport because this time around she pulak is going away for a week. Seems like I'll be Emma-less for this week, but Ulfah-ful so no worries!








And then the next day, Ulfah & I went up north to Loughborough to visit her mum's best friend. It was really sunny and clouds were gorgeous, look.






These bright, vibrant photos belie a miserably chilly weather okay, don't be fooled. Honestly. What happened to Spring, UK?? I thought we agreed that no more sub-10 temperatures and no more heavy winter coats and no more mist coming out of my mouth when I breathe?? See, UK's just very bipolar in that sense, and frankly speaking, I've given up trying to understand its erratic seasons & weathers. Whatever you say, UK, uhuh, okay.



I digressed, haha. Back to the Loughborough story. We were treated to good food and good company and most importantly, KIDS!! Her mum's best friend has three grandchildren so we spent the day playing with the kids. They were absolute sweethearts and I was preoccupied with stuff like Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and Lion King most of the time that I actually forgot to take any photos of the kids. At the end of the day Ulfah & I were both beat and full, that walk home from the tube station was downright dreadful I thought of asking her to just drag me home instead of walking myself haha, but we had plenty good fun that day so all is well.

Umm what else? Ah! It's April, yeoreobun! It's that time of the academic year where I try not to turn my room topsy turvy with papers as my exams draw nearer, and I know this rings true to everyone else who have a mountain of courseworks to do or dissertations to submit or year-long syllabus to crunch.

Tough times. It's the final stretch, yeoreobun, godspeed!

I foresee the coming days and weeks to be revision-centric without much interesting tales to tell, so I might not blog much. Okay prooobably just some mini updates every now and then to touch base on being alive and sane (should any of you get worried if I'm drowning in my own pool of tears from the studying that I'm doing),

but basically

you might not get a lot of posts from me,








so, like, you might miss me,








so you might curse me in 5 different languages for having a blog but neglecting it,








so I will leave you with some of the recent happy happenstances that I chanced upon as I was traversing the internet, like this Surgery and Life post, a post so genuine, so artless, so frank about coping with an unfortunate event.

And Gabie Kook, a Korean foodie vlogger whose channel fortuitously came up in the results when I was searching for Park Min Young (I'm borderline obsessed with PMY haha sorry!) on YouTube. She really does look like PMY in some ways, but that's not why I fell in love with her videos. It's how she carries herself flamboyantly in her videos! And guys, she's married to an English man who's fluent in Korean. Jackpot.

While we're at this Korean topic, you might have heard of the KDrama Kill Me Heal Me? Yeah, that drama enticed me with its idea of multiple personality disorder, but it didn't hold my interest for very long, albeit I did manage to finish it last year. I just couldn't take it when it was revealed that the heroine's (unbiological) brother had been in love with her all along... It just rubbed me off the wrong way, I mean, developing romantic feelings for your own sibling is just too grim, too disturbing for my logic. So while it's not among my favourite KDramas, its OST certainly is one of my favourite OSTs! No, actually, it reigns over my heart as the best OST I've ever listened to, because it gave me so much feels. I've heard some other good OSTs from other KDramas, but none of them is at par with and as spectacular & hauntingly beautiful as that one, until I heard this song from Descendants of The Sun the other day. Finally, another song that can make my heart ache from sooo. Much. Feels!!

Lastly, this post that made me stop and think and reevaluate how I see most things. It's an easy read but laden with wisdom.

I think those things should suffice for you to survive on till my next post, take care!



Saturday, 9 April 2016

Amie



I cried today and it was not because of a KDrama.

I was talking to Amie on Facetime and as usual, our conversation ran the gamut from the deepest, sombre topics, to nonsensical jokes, to just plain banter exchange. We dissected the current KDramas that we're watching. I went on complaining about my ever expanding cheeks, we brainstormed ways to deflate them : contouring? Too much effort & time required, and let's be honest here, my makeup applying finesse is... Nought. Face exercise? My logic tells me that if doing push ups make biceps bulky and hard, continuously moving my facial muscles will just make my cheeks sturdy and robust. That's counter productive, so no thank you hahaha. Amie settled for "Aku rasa kau biarkan je lah pipi kau mcm tu, aku sayang kau seadanya,". She explained about some strange Dentistry stuff. We discussed about the possible prospect of her coming to the UK to visit me in the future (!!! I hope it happens amin amin amin). We spazzed about my coming back to Malaysia soon and the many things we'll do and the cornflake madu that she'll make for Eid (and that I'll finish dengan tak tahu malunya). We talked about our current day in, day out routines and how we've been coping with our demanding schedules.

In the middle of laughing at each other and with each other, we somehow got to talking about relationships and things along that line.

That was when my eyes suddenly became Niagara Falls.

I cried because we were not having giddy, butterflies in stomach, head in the clouds sort of conversations about having a crush & being smitten in love, but we were talking about the commitment of being in a relationship and what it entails past that period of novelty. We were talking about how relationships shouldn't be about ownership/possession, but rather about 2 souls who are in an ongoing journey towards the betterment of themselves, together, side by side. Our convo kind of heralded Amie's transition into the next stage of her life and it's just baffling guys!! How did we get from our awkward, ugly 13-year-olds MySpace stage to this stage?! Wasn't it just yesterday that we were coming up with plans about how Amie should make a move to the senior that she had a crush on in high school? 9 years ago both of us would instinctively jump at any chance to so much as smile to the boys we'd had our eyes on, let alone be romantically involved with them. Yet there she was today, her face spread across the screen, doing a double take, doubtful if she should take the plunge or not. Gone is the youthful bravado to dive head first into the unknown. That was when I realised that the new girl who stepped into 1 Cemerlang mid-2007 has metamorphosed into a completely different person now, yet still my very same best friend in the core. To watch Amie grow and blossom into the mature, kind-hearted, wonderfully fine young lady that she is now, is a privilege.

I conjured mental images of Amie getting married and having a husband to be the person she tells anything and everything to and it broke my heart because I used to be that person.

I cried because once she's off the market, she'll surely spend a lot of time with her husband and I will no longer be allowed to Facetime her anytime I want. Every other day Facetime calls will turn into a weekly thing, and then fortnightly.

Mamak sessions almost every night will get rationed to once a month.

Plans will get cancelled because visiting in laws, monthly antenatal check ups, and then little Amies come into the picture and before we know it, we drift off and get estranged.

It'll be the era of iPhone 70S and she'll probably even pull a "New phone who dis?". The horror!!!!!

These are just the inner workings of my mind but man I couldn't stop crying at the possibilities and Amie was just....... laughing at me. Dasar kawan sejati.

After laughing at my cengeng-ness, Amie reassured me that she'll always regard me as the best friend.

Well. She'd better!! Otherwise I'll infect her socks with nasty virus so she grows warts on her toes. Don't play play.

Haih. Amie's doomed to have a clingy friend like me but I am blessed to have a best friend like her! This girl is a gem and I thank God every day for letting our paths cross and I hope our friendship will stand the test of time (and men... Ugh. Joking). I wish for nothing but good things both in this world and the hereafter for this girl.

If she really wants to get married, then I wish her a lasting loving matrimony with a person who loves her on good and bad days, who continues to encourage her to grow and chase her dreams, who values her humour and charm and kindness and wit and beauty, who challenges her without demeaning her, who pulls her back to the right path should she go astray, who makes her closer to the Creator.



Saturday, 2 April 2016

Roti Canai



My friends Feie & Mairah tapau-ed roti canai(s) for me & Emma from Roti King yesterday.

OH MY GOD.

For those of you who do not know how roti canai looks like, I sympathise, for you are missing out on one of the greatest inventions of mankind. I wish I can show you a photo of it but my fervour upon the sight and smell of the roti canai was too violent that I couldn't even spare a few seconds to take a photo of it, had to jump straight into devouring it. Here's the first Google image result of 'roti canai' search entry,




I believe an introduction is in order.

People who don't know what roti canai is, roti canai.

Roti canai, people.

Sounds like I'm introducing a potential husband candidate when really, it's just my number one favourite food in the whole wide world.

My family and best friends would know how great a deal roti canai is to me. It's my favourite favourite faaaavourite food! Yeoreobun, we're talking about having it for breakfast and lunch and dinner (and snacks in between the meal times) in the same day kind of favourite, that should be sufficient for a testament to my insatiable love for roti canai. My mum said it's my staple food hahah. I cannot thank Feie & Mairah enough for the roti canai, definitely my foremost highlight of this week, and this week isn't even over yet.

Haih. You know what they say. Keep your friends close,

your friends who bought roti canai for you closer.

And Roti King even closer. Oh wait, that's a little far-fetched.

Some of my friends are in London because they had/have interviews in conjunction with the Career Fair thingy, which means KHouse has to put on the KHomestay cap for this week! Need to earn the 5 star reviews on TripAdvisor! Hehe. Ulfah's currently away for a week for her Easter Break excursion, Emma's also going away soon, while my Easter Break is coming to an end.....

Can you hear that? No, that's not whale songs coming from the North Atlantic Ocean. That's just me lamenting over the end of my 2 weeks' worth of kdramas, non-medical books, cooking, guiltless lie in(s), well basically everything but uni.