Monthly Archives: December 2015

When Zayd Hamzah met Shaykh Hamza

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Very old update that I just found on my drafts!

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With the wonderful and humble Shaykh Hamza Yusuf 🙂

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Dua for Zayd Hamzah

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In this precious wonderful book 🙂

On 30th August 2014, Mummy and Daddy brought you to meet Shaykh Hamza Yusuf at his book signing in Nur Innai Bookstore. Mummy is a huge follower of Shaykh Hamza Yusuf. You could probably still remember all of his talks that you listened to with mummy while you are in my tummy!

Shaykh Hamza wrote you a doa in his book and mummy will show it to you when you are big enough to appreciate it.

Do read this book. It’s packed full of wonderful reminders. And indeed, the most important part of a believer is the heart. So constantly try to purify your heart and make dua to Allah that we will always be guided forever.

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Cooking for my boy.

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I am on a roller coaster of emotion these days. On Monday I was down in a pit of dark emotional well because I burnt a perfectly good bone broth. Don’t ask. But on Tuesday, my heart sings a thousand beautiful songs because I made a perfectly wonderful traditional ‘kueh’ that my boy loves so much. Hoorraayy!!

The life of a Stay-at-Home-Mums was never a dull one. Wait no, usually it’s pretty dull except when you were faced with these mini dramas you create out of your own kitchen.

This path is certainly not the one I plan. In fact, I don’t know how many SAHM out there actually plan to be a SAHM when they grow up. We were taught that we need to be teachers, doctors, engineers. Staying at home to raise your kids? What is that? There’s no figure like that to colour or spell on your worksheet. Our modern educational system certainly do not recognised ‘child-rearing’ as a ‘career’ path.

So most of of us, we stumbled into the path through life’s wonderful intricacies.

And now, at this point in my life, I am a SAHM. Well, I normally refer to myself as WAHM (Work-at-Home-Mum) because I also write. And writing is something I have always been working on since..well, forever.

But what I want to talk about here is the joy I felt when my boy ate the food that I lovingly cooked.

To be honest, I hate cooking. There are days that I felt just ‘arghhh can’t I just order Foodpanda todayyyy!!’. Before Zayd, my husband did most of the cooking at home. But after the birth of Zayd, and since I officially became a SAHM – I am the one who did most of the cooking. So that might explained a little bit about the burnt bone broth.

But I love ‘having cooked’. I love looking at my boy eating my home-cooked food.

I am blessed with a boy that has a very healthy appetite. He always loved food, even when he was a baby. So it really motivated me to cook and learn to be a better cook so that I can feed him better food. And this process is immensely rewarding!

The feeling you get when you saw your child gobbled up whatever you put in his plate is priceless. Knowing that he is not just consuming what you cook, but he is also absorbing all your love and dua from you. And when he’s done he goes ‘nak tambah’, pointing with his chubby fingers to the direction of the kitchen. It just melts my heart into a puddle of love and gratitude!

So my ‘Joy of SAHM’ today is cooking 🙂

The ‘real’ mummy

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I have been reading back all my posts and I have to admit that I sound a bit too one dimensional (ie. goody-goody mummy) in writing these posts. Let me explain though. Although I sound one-dimensional, I don’t mean it to be like that. It’s because, when I write, I almost always want to write about what I want to remember when I look back. And of course, we only want to remember the good stuff.

But life is not like that.

And Zayd, when you are all grown up and reading this you will know that I am most definitely NOT a goody-goody mummy. So now, for the sake of record (and to tell your future self that – Zayd, your mummy knew she was not perfect and she had million flaws and she wondered everyday how did you turn up so well despite all her faults – and the answer to that is only by the Love and Mercy and Protection from Allah).

Anyway, let’s start.

I am a very impatient mummy. When you scream, I scream. Yes. That is the truth. And I did it a million times. And then I apologised to you again for it a million times. I wish I am more patient, calm, nurturing etc etc and somedays I am those things. Especially after I came back from a parenting talk or I read some new parenting articles about gentle parenting or something of the sort. But most of the time, I am a ‘momster’. Crazy mummy.

I am not very in-tune with you. Meaning, sometimes I didn’t get you. Sometimes I wonder what exactly do you want. Maybe because you are a ‘boy’ boy, and I am ‘girly’ mummy. Maybe because you are more like your dad. I don’t know. But when I see you with your dad, I knew that he ‘gets’ you. Something that I struggled with.

I am inflexible. Set in my ways. Rigid. You name it. And I knew sometimes it gets to you. And you will throw tantrum when you feel unjustified or pushed or not heard.

I know as you grow up, more and more of my faults will be apparent to you. And sometimes you will hate me for it. Sometimes you will get angry and upset because of it. And sometimes you will feel like I am the meanest mom in the whole world (which I might be at that moment).

Do know that all that – the impatient screaming mummy, the ‘what do you want?’ mummy, the ‘my way of the high way’ mummy – is all part and parcel of your mummy. Your mummy that loves you with all her being, since the moment she knew that you were there in her tummy until the day she moved on to the next world – all for the sake of Allah.

And all my weaknesses and craziness did not take away even an ounce of my love away from you. It just means that it will be a bit harder for you to ‘love’ me sometimes. But it’s ok. Because I love you all the time – and even during the hardest time for you to ‘love’ me – my love is enough for both of us.

And I  hope someday when you are all grown up, you will learn in your own way – just how I had to learn it in my own way – that as much as I love you, Allah’s love is much much greater for you.

Allah’s love is the reason that you will keep loving me back again and again – even after my millionth scream. Because Allah, in His Infinite Love and Mercy – has put an unbreakable bond between you and me. And that even in the darkest time, His Love will always show us the way.

 

 

Going to a talk with Zayd

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Today, we went together as Z family (Big Z, Mummy Z, and Lil’Z) together to listen to a talk by Muhammad Alshareef at Dewan Muktamar Pusat Islam. The title of the talk is Undisputed.

Before Zayd, or what me and Big Z like to call (B.Z), both of us love going to talks. Any kind of talks really. We are *that* happening type of people ehehe. But after Zayd came along, our going-to-talks activities slowed down tremendously to give way to breastfeeding, night-waking, and consequently zombie-walking during the day.

Even then, alhamdulillah, we still managed to go to a few talks with the help of our babywearing gear. I remembered a few talks that we went where Zayd slept snugly in his wrap. That was when he was baby and a willing wrappee.

But when he reached 1 year, and with it came walking and running (while still breastfeeding), the going to talk became a bit challenging. This is when we hardly went to any talks and spent chasing him round and round the house instead.

After he was weaned off, I started going to my weekend courses again. And Big Z will take care of him. This is my me-time and their father-son bonding time.

But after a while, I miss going to talk with Big Z, and I really wanted us to go as a family. Alhamdulillah, tonight Allah granted that and we managed to attend this talk as a family.

All families will have different ways of raising their kid, but for me, I would really want to raise my kid around the idea of learning and seeking knowledge. I think the best thing any parent could do is to instill the love of learning and seeking knowledge from an early age.

This means bringing him with us even though we knew that there might be time where he will cry and cause a scene (which he did), and where we will have to miss portions of the talk because we have to keep walking around after him (which we did), and we have to deal with the logistics of carrying the stroller up and down the stairs (because he fall asleep in the car) and million other things that we don’t even have to think of if we were to just go to this talk by ourselves.

But now, we are no longer just family of 2, we are a family of 3. So up with the stroller we go.

Alhamdulillah, Zayd seems to be really enjoying himself running around and making us tired chasing after him. He made a few new friends. He also seems to be really popular with young ‘kakaks’ who keep going ‘oooh’ and ‘aaah’ after him.

I am really grateful to Allah for giving us this opportunity to learn together as a family. It was a really wonderful and meaningful experience. I hope we will be given more and more opportunities like this ameen.

Some gems from the talk (whenever I managed to take a note):

  1. Definition of ‘success’ in the Quran is having 1) iman and 2) amal soleh. The combination of heart and action. Inside and outside.
  2. Muslims must strive to be ‘in the zone’. Sabr and redha when first hit by a test. Stress will produce toxicity in the body, while sabr will calm our heart and elevate our spiritual self.
  3. “How many people are you worth?” – reflect on the worth of yourself.
  4. “Don’t you be the reasons that Muslim will be killed today” – do not be the weakest link of the Ummah.
  5. All prophets were a shpeherd. What do they learn from being a shepherd that taught them to be responsible? 1) how to get from point A to point B 2) taught them to have higher and further vision
  6. Take responsibility for something – based on what you love to do.

3 things to take responsibility for:

  1. things that you love to do
  2. visualise and see the future
  3. taking action when you make a commitment

7. Measure what you do. If it’s not measured, it’s not going to be improved.

8. Do things with ihsaan (excellence).

9. We are always only working at 40% capacity. How do we improve this? Better time management. More efficient way of doing things.

10. Nation falls when they accept that they have done enough – from Muqaddimah by Ibn Khaldun

11. Must keep upgrading ourself. Don’t be complacent.

12. 30 days challenge – only do 1 habit per challenge. 10 days will be painful. The next 10 days uncomfortable. The last 10 days unstoppable.

13. Upgrade our dua

14. Your life is the reflection of your dua

15. Roadmap of dua:

  1. Be inspired
  2. Select the things you make dua that you can take action on
  3. Have a dua habit

16. Don’t hold back your dua. You are asking Allah, who’s capable of Anything and Everything. Your dua’ might just be ‘crayons’ to Him.

17. Ihsaan never happens by accident. Excellence must be planned and measured.

18. Story of Umar Abd Aziz – life of making dua’

19. Begin a dua habit. 2 times: 1) between azan and iqaamah 2) after sunnah prayer before Subuh  – for the next month everyday!

20. Anas’s favourite hadith – you will be with the person that you love in Akhirah.

 

 

 

 

Deeper conversation

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At 2 and a half, Zayd is a really good communicator. I also have realised that he has a natural talent of language. He is able to construct long sentences and speaking almost like a pre-schooler. He is bi-lingual, speaking and understanding in Malay and English. His Malay is better than his English. He has more Malay vocabularies, thanks to his dad who’s always telling him stories about cars and whatnots in Malay.

I know some parents really pushed their kids to master English at an early age and I totally get it. English is very important as it is the language that is mostly used in education, business etc. For me, I prefer to not push any language but rather to let him develop natural love and appreciation for all languages. My wish for him is to be at least tri-lingual, with Arabic being the 3rd language. Since me and his dad is already bi-lingual, it is only normal that we want our kids to be better than us. If he really has a knack for languages, I would like him to master as many languages as he wants.

I truly believe that the key to knowledge is language. Not just English language, but all languages. In fact, this over-emphasis of English language, for me – has more problems than benefits. It will produce generation that is narrow-minded and arrogant, thinking that the only ‘valid’ knowledge is the one produced in English. They will shut down their eyes and ears to other sort of knowledge and only want to learn what is deemed ‘valuable’ in the English-speaking world. This has resulted in the loss of so many important knowledge.

People who love language are people who love other people. They want to know about other people. They want to understand them in their own language, in their own perspective. Not just from reading the accounts of other people’s writing about them. Or watching documentary made about them. And in the Quran, we are told:

O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another (49:13)

And one of the most basic way of getting to know one another is through learning their language.

I am not doing nearly enough at exposing Zayd to many different languages. Maybe I should download that Duolingo apps again hmm..