Rays of Splendour


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Of parents’ birthdays and other random updates

Lying in bed in the dark while blogging on the WordPress app. This is the first time that I’m using the app!

Figured I’d just quickly jot down some moments that occurred in the past few days for the record.

Celebrated the parents’ birthdays

The parents’ birthdays are only 4 days apart from each other. As they gained an extra year in their ages, I’m reminded that my time with them could be getting shorter.

Unlike during times when I was much younger, these days I began to comprehend more the sacrifices and love they have for me. I saw how the parents are very giving towards my siblings and I, how they are always our biggest supporters in whatever that we do and how they never fail to continuously make duas for us to be granted with nothing but the best.

They have such unconditional love for us. I feel it in not just the way they always go the extra mile for us but also in the way that I never felt as though my presence was not wanted.

Everytime I’m with the parents, I felt it in me that our presence are such a blessing to their lives.

For all the goodness they’ve shown my siblings and I, I pray that Allah grants them abundance both in this world and the Hereafter. I pray too that Allah forgives any of their sins and places them in Paradise, amin.

Korean language class

This week, I received news that I am being offered a place to learn Korean at the language institute on campus. Alhamdulillah!

It’s a ten weeks programme. Currently, I’m supposed to start attending lessons this March daily from Mondays to Fridays from 6.30pm to about 9.10pm. I also have the option to change the lesson start time to summer which is in June and attend the morning 9am lesson instead.

So now, I’m in a dilemma whether to postpone the start times or not. If I were to continue with the March start time, it means that I will be going back home from school late everyday. Plus, I will be juggling that with the other courses in the day.

If I were to start in June, it would mean that I would not be going back home to Singapore for the summer vacation. That means: After flying to Seoul next week, I’ll only be back in Singapore in December. I’ll literally be gone for the next 10 months!

Not too sure what I’ll do. Regardless, praying for Allah to help guide me to the suitable choice.

Heartache

That’s “ache” in a literal sense.

Not too sure why but the heart has been feeling a tad bit odd these past few weeks. Even as I’m blogging this, I felt a slight tug at some vein near the heart area just mere moments ago.

Also, I do not know whether there is a co-relation but past few weeks too, there have been some moments when my world just seemed to momentarily spin. It will spin for a few seconds. The feeling’s as though I’m losing my balance. Like I will fall on the ground. It’ll last only a few seconds though.

Hmmm. Hoping it’s nothing and just my imagination!

I’ll be living alone in Seoul yet again. Gonna be doing everything alone and it’s gonna be back to times where I have to rely on only myself to survive the days. So yep, praying that my body continues being healthy insyaAllah.

Just a few days ago I was feeling worried when I read news of someone who passed away suddenly. That compelled me to send a panicked WhatsApp text to both my bffs to tell them to start wondering if they don’t hear any replies from me for more than 3 days. Though seriously, who they have to contact to check if I’m allright is beyond me. I really do not have anyone in Seoul whom the people in Singapore can contact to check on me.

Okay. Hand’s getting cramped from typing this blog entry on my mobile phone. Gonna stop now. It’s pretty convenient to be using this WordPress app though!


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18 days to Ramadan, and 30 more days to Home!

I woke up to today with two thoughts: 18 more days to Ramadan. 30 more days (1 month!) to Singapore.

These are the two things I currently look forward to very, very, very much and I pray so much that Allah allows me to experience them.

Ramadan is a month whose impending approach I wait with bated breath every year. It’s one of my most favourite months of the year for the increased blessings that Allah showers His creations and the ease (insyaAllah) in gaining closeness to Him during that time. Maybe I’m reading too much into it but whenever Ramadan comes, the days always feel different from other months. I’m unable to pinpoint the exact aspects about this month that causes it to have a different feel than others but yeah, I always noted that somehow the whole atmosphere during that one month is just different from other months.

As for looking forward to being able to fly back to Singapore… That’s something new for me. I’ve never been in a position where I’ve been so excited at the prospect of going home. Been excited, yes, but not at this level!

I’ve been talking to some of my classmates and we’ve been sharing with each other our plans for the summer vacation. I’ve one classmate who will be flying to both Philippines and Iran as those places are where his parents came from. I’ve another who said she will be going back home to Uzbekistan. Then there’s yet another who told me she will be going back to Malaysia to be with her family.

In all of these conversations, one thing stood out to me: Every single one of them talked about going back home to someone.

I found myself being able to relate very much to their sharing. It seems to me that despite the laughter, smiles and excitement that all of us bring to class and at embracing the experiences that living in South Korea offers us, our hearts seem to firmly belong somewhere else. Well, at least that is how things are for me.

These past three months that I’m here, I realized that I left a very big part of my heart over there. On the one hand, I am truly grateful for the opportunities to grow, learn and see new aspects of the world while I’m here and admittedly, there have been many days where I woke up giving my thanks to Allah for placing me at a point in life where I’m contented with, alhamdulillah. Yet, I’m also very much aware that despite being contented, my heart isn’t entirely whole either.

This is because all the people whom this heart beats for, and the ones that it has never ceased longing for since Day 1 that its owner arrived in Korea, are all there in Singapore.

So this journey back home – unlike the ones I made when I return from a holiday abroad – is one where I find myself not merely closing the geographical distance between Singapore and I. It’s also one where, insyaAllah, I would find myself making the journey to connect back to the portions of my heart which I’ve left in Singapore.

Until then, I pray so much that Allah allows me to go back home safely. Yes, that paranoid part of myself do sometimes ask myself this: What if I am able to go back home but then it’s only the lifeless body that reaches Singapore?

Many things happen in life. In this past one week, I knew of two deaths that occurred which reminded me of how fragile life could be and how our ultimate home, as well as where all the pieces of our heart should rightfully belong to, is with Him.


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It’s 7 March… and I’m another year older!

It’s my first ever birthday overseas.

During each of the previous birthdays before this, I’ve never been one who expects to celebrate it nor do I expect to receive gifts for it. To me, it is enough to have my family and close ones by my side. I believe that their presence in my life forms one of the biggest blessings I am ever granted and to know that they’re there with me is enough. That on its own is already a huge, huge, huge gift for me.

So to wake up for fajr to silence and no glimpse of the dad peeking his head into my room to wish me a happy birthday, or the mom singing me her rendition of the song in her off-key tone, or the brother going “Kak, it’s your birthday today?? I didn’t know sehhhhhh!“, or the two bffs attempting to pull off some birthday surprise to humorous results… Well I must say, all these have opened my eyes to how Allah has been so generous all these while in placing those people in my life.

That aside, those people never cease to make their presence known in my life.

In the past few hours, I’ve received birthday greetings from them through WhatsApp (seriously, the wonders of technology!).

I’ve also received a video which I could see required a lot of communication and logistical planning between the people involved. The video sparked off a variety of reaction within me: I was moved and appreciative of the effort that goes into it (they said it took two months to prepare! *salute the effort*); I was also tickled immensely by it and couldn’t help laughing out loud by myself as I watched it; it made me happy to see my friends coming together and enjoying themselves as they shot it; and I was just… grateful in general.

Lastly, I also received gifts from them! 🙂

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You know how sometimes you just share things with your friends? You thought it was just one of those usual conversations you have with them. Imagine my surprise when I opened the package from Sut, Kin and Fad and found a Pandora box inside. See, I have been raving to them about the sudden inspiration I had to add a pendant charm to my Pandora bracelet and even spent time with Sut to look through its website at possible ones to get. To open the package and be greeted with that… Well, that made me go “Wow! But weren’t we just talking and raving about it together like we normally would when it comes to our other buys?“. I had initially planned to buy it for myself as a gift for completing the semester many months from now (insyaAllah) but now that I received one as a gift, that made it even more special. I’ll definitely be admiring this charm as it hangs from my wrist whenever I put on my Pandora bracelet.

And that basket of flowers over there? Never ever in a million years do I expect to receive it from this friend. So to open the door to my apartment and be presented with the delivery, then to read the card and found out who sent them, and thereafter noted that they contain pink roses and carnations… I couldn’t help think “But wasn’t I just texting random updates about what I saw during my first day of school when I was raving to him about pink roses and carnations? He’s sending me some??“. Yet, I love the flowers a lot and shall appreciate its beauty while it’s still alive.

Amazing how these people can be hundreds of miles away from me and yet I can feel their presence as strong as ever.

So, I’m an extra year older in my thirties (and ever closer to meeting the Lord). I pray that He continues keeping my heart turned to Him in faith and grants me an increase in it, that I am never heedless of His blessings, that I am in constant remembrance of Him, that I never neglect His rights upon me and that I always have the love of Him and the Prophet pbuh in my heart.

I pray too that He grants my family and the people close to me His constant love, care and protection always; and that He grants them all that is good in this life and the Hereafter.