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Friday, 24 May 2013

The best experience birth

Hi all,

We, mothers had just celebrated mother's day about two weeks ago. What's there to celebrate? Some attention from the children and that we were being fussed about on that day. Actually,that's what really matters  to the many of us. We want them to always keep a little space in their thoughts about us. We want them to be beside us to share their innermost feelings with us. We want them to remain our babies forever even though that was impossible to happen. We saw them grew up right before our eyes and there's nothing we could do about it.

Sitting down alone after a collect call from Sophie a couple of days ago, and listening to her animated voice telling me about her hectic daily (college) schedule, got me thinking how time flies, I mean really flies. It seems like yesterday, when she and my three other kids were just running around playing hide and seek or pulling my hand gently asking for milk or getting excited about their first day of school. Those were the days when we thought why didn't we all have four hands.Two ain't enough! Boy, we hardly had any time to breathe luxuriously, let alone a time for ourselves.

I remember the first time when I went into labour twenty four years ago with my first child, Ariff.  The pain was excruciating. Everyone was saying the same thing. After the labour, you'd swore to never having another baby again, which is partly true but soon after that you started thinking about having another. Since the baby was 2 weeks overdue, the doctors had to induce me (medical term for accelerating the delivery process). I was admitted since 0800hrs and had to lie down on the hospital bed throughout the day. It was quite a smooth process actually. Not too much pain involved. Doctors came and went until about six something in the evening when one of them said I was nearly ready to deliver.The contraction came and went. A male doctor put a strap with a thermometer-like gadget on my belly and started counting. I asked him what was he doing. Counting the baby's heart beat, he said. Then as an afterthought, he asked me if I knew what sex my baby was. I said no I dont. I want it to be a surprise as this was to be my first. He went on again mocking me, if you wish to know your baby's sex, just count the heart beat per minute. If the pace is slower per minute (I can't remember the counting), then it's a boy and if the pace is faster then it's a girl. After he left, I thought what the heck, the baby will arrive very soon anyway, let's try and count. I counted and what do you know. It's a boy! I mean, my instinct was right all along, I even called him his name even though I never  knew it would be a boy since I never let the doctor to tell me whenever they did the ultrasound on my belly during my 9 months of pregnancy.
By seven something the pain was starting to get worse but I can still bear it. When I was about ready to deliver, the nurses were looking for the doctor but he wasn't around. Believe it or not, he went back to doctor's quarters to hit the shower. Seriously! They paged for him and other doctors but everyone was busy. I was left in the capable hands of the nurses. I delivered safely a boy at about 7.23pm, that was to be my first son. The story didn't finish there. I started feeling another pain inside but I don't know what. Again the nurses paged for the doctor to hurry over as my placenta was stuck inside and wouldn't come out. By now I was sobbing quietly. The nurses took pity on me and sedate with something and soon I fell asleep while they waited for the doctor to attend to me. I got my consciousness well after 10pm.

My second one was also a boy, Soffian. This time I chose a private maternity clinic as I was still traumatized by the first experience I had at the general hospital. The same process had been applied as I wasn't able to give birth naturally. I had to be induced again. While the drips was taking effect slowly, I brought out a book and started to read. My doctor came and saw me reading.  I can see a lopsided grin on his face. I asked why was he smiling. He said, throughout his many years of being an obstetrician, I was the first person doing the reading while in labour. After checking the opening, he said I will be putting away the book in not too long now. True to his words, I started having serious pain after about an hour. I gripped my husband's hand and said to him, you have to be with me when I am about to deliver. He promised me he would.
Soon after,I was wheeled into the labour room with my husband by my side. By now, the pain was out of this world. I was clutching my husband's hand tightly. I closed my eyes and started pushing following the doctor's command.
Then the miracle happened. It was as if out of nowhere the baby appeared. They wiped him and placed him on my chest for a few minutes. I choked on my tears of happiness.
I looked around for my husband but he was nowhere to be seen. I asked Patricia, the head nurse where my husband was. She said he went out sometime ago when he saw blood oozing out. Hemm..who's in pain actually..

Two years later when I got pregnant with Sophie, I was hoping against hope that this time we will get a baby girl. And this time around, I did the sonogram and asked to be told of the baby's sex. It's a girl. But this time I didn't want to deliver the natural way. Reason being, after my two sons were born, I had a bad hemorrhoids. I was bleeding profusely and I can't sleep or walk or sit properly. I was suffering terribly but I was too ashamed to inform the doctors so I kept it to myself and bear with it after each delivery. So, I promised myself that if I were to get pregnant again I would try some other way. I consult with the same obstetrician and he told me to try out the epidural way. They told me that I would be conscious throughout the delivery process but I will be anesthetized from my hips below. Therefore I wouldn't feel any pain. I agreed right away. Silly me. I was to realize later that it doesn't stop the hemorrhoids from recurring since I still need to push the baby out, pain or no pain. The only consolation was that it helped a little with decreasing the labour pain but the hemorrhage won't leave me. It usually subsided and healed after about a year. But the best thing that appeared through all the challenges, came my little princess, Sophie. The pain was nothing when compared to the little creature placed on my chest.

The last was to be Sara. Before her, I had a miscarriage when the baby was about 3 months in my womb. I cried my heart out because I thought she could feel that she wasn't welcome to be with me. I was feeling guilty towards Sophie as she herself was just a baby and I was pregnant with yet another child. I had many things on my mind and my beloved grandmother was dying. I went home to visit her and stayed for two nites but we had to leave as my husband had to be back at work. We came back to Langkawi and the moment we reached home, I felt something watery running down my legs. Pulling up my pants, I saw blood rushing down. I knew then that I had a miscarriage. I also received a news that my grandmother passed away and the first thing that came to my mind was that I can't be at her funeral. The person I loved the most in this whole wide world and I can't be with her to bid my last farewell. I cried for days and not caring about my health. I can feel that every one back at my grandma's home would be talking about me for not presenting myself at least for a while to see her for the last time. How can I be, I am sick myself.

Soon after that I was to have Sara. This time I thought of doing the C-section. I told the same doctor again that I wanted to deliver that way. Why, why, why was all he asked, many times. I said I don't want to have to go through the pain again (not telling him about my hemorrhoids.) He said it will ruin my skin since my skin was without any stretch marks and that I could easily deliver normally. I was adamant about it. So we agreed that I was to deliver my last baby via C-section. I was glad I chose this options. It was painless, and relaxing and just plain great. Only thing is, I was conscious the whole time they were processing on me. I was lying on that clinic bed half naked and a few male doctors with nurses were chatting away about the breakfast they had had that morning. Like, hello guys, I am still here! Does anybody care about me? Then, all of a sudden, when my eyes were wondering wildly across the room, I looked up the ceiling and saw the spotlight( I don't know the actual term name for that light) clear as a glass. It reflected on my belly and they had just cut opened. I nearly panic and breathed heavily. The doctors turned to look at me and asked what was wrong. Was I in pain. I pointed my finger to the light above. They had just realized about it and asked me to look somewhere else while they quickly grabbed a steel bar and placed around me and covered it with a cloth. I was still in shock when a while later they presented me with my last bundle of joy, Sara. I kissed her long and hard and say my gratitude towards Him for bestowing upon me four precious gems that was to bring me joy later in years.

Ladies, who ever says women are weak. We are some kind of heroes that had to battle on our own without fear to bring another human being into this world. That required a great courage and total strength to do what we did. So children, love, care and respect are all that we asked from you. We love you children of the world.

Good nite to  moms and courageous women all over the world.

24th.May '13


Thursday, 23 May 2013


Salam buat  anak-anak perempuan dan semua di luar sana!

Dah agak lama mak cik Rose tak update post masakan ni. Bukannya apa, tapi tak mau nak letak sembarangan saja. Selalu masak tapi masak cincai ja bila malas.
Resipi hari ni pun, resipi yang agak malas (bagi mak cik Rose la) iaitu masak asam pedas. Amat ringkas dan cepat di masak, sedap dimakan. Kalau jenis masakan untuk makan dengan nasi, jenis berkuah, masakan ni adalah favourite mak cik Rose.
Resipi ni khas utk anak-anak gadis yg masih baru di dapur.

Jom kita sediakan bahan-bahannya :

  • Ikan kembung atau apa-apa ikan yg anak-anak suka
  • 4 sudu cili kisar 
  • 4 ulas bwg merah ,2 ulas bwg putih dan sebatang serai yg di kisar 
  •  sikit belacan ( dikisar sekali dgn bwg)
  • sikit serbuk ketumbar
  • Daun kesum
  • sikit garam dan gula
  • suku cawan air asam jawa
  • hirisan buah nenas untuk mendapatkan kemanisan dari buah ni
Kita mulakan dengan menumis bwg merah/bwg putih dan serai yg di kisar tadi bersama dgn belacan.
Lepas tu masukkan cili kisar dan serbuk ketumbar. (Kalau nak bau yg segar boleh campur dan kisar sekali cili kering dan cili merah.)
Masukkan sikit air dulu. Tumis sampai cili masak. (nak tau cili masak, warnanya akan bertukar ke merah gelap)
Sekarang bolehlah ditambah air, kalau nak cair lebihkan air, kalau nak pekat kurangkan air.

Buah nenas yg dihiris tadi bolehlah dimasukkan sekarang bersama dengan daun kesum.
Bila dah mendidih, bolehlah dimasukkan ikan, garam, gula dan air asam jawa.
Tutup periuk dan biar lebih kurang 4 minit atau sehingga ikan dah masak dan kuah mendidih.

Dah siap. Senang kan. Cuba masak kat rumah.
Ini versi yang mudah. Janji kita dapat makan masakan sendiri dan sedap.

Salam hormat,
24th.May '13

Friday, 17 May 2013

Birthdays and Heartaches

Hello everybody,

I haven't had enough time to write lately. I must find a way to juggle time effectively.
Anyway, yesterday,  I reached the big five o. Yeap, I turned fifty yesterday. How do I feel? The same, can't say I'd be jumping with joy and elation at the thought of being fifty. I feel birthdays are only for kids, teenagers and young adults. They appreciate and express it better than us, the older group.

When we are at this age, most of us would mellow down a little in everything we do. We became slow in our speech, slower in our strides and slower even with our brains. Not much but noticeable. There were things that we were passionate about years ago that now became of no importance. We were so crazily in love with our spouse back then that nothing else mattered. Now after twenty five years of blissful marriage, we had found a mutual comfort with one another that required nothing but understanding and trust. We don't go berserk when our man were ogling another woman. We don't automatically feel suspicious when our husbands were hanging on the phone longer than five minutes. We don't nag him like we used to. Instead, we feel cozy and content with our lives now. Men are insensitive creatures. I know that but sometimes, we need men to understand how we feel too. Not us only need to try and understand them always.

But, too much coziness and contented life is not good for us, I would say. It will lead any one of us to become static with our lives and productivity .We would also take each other for granted. I believe we should show some appreciation towards our spouse while they are there and still with us. Don't wait until one of us is gone coz by then it will be too late.
Ariff got me a book by my favorite author for my birthday, So did Sara. That was sweet of her! She saved daily and bought me something too. Sophie had gotten me something but she wanted to give it to me in person once she got home for semester break. Soffian totally forgot about it and my husband didn't seem to think birthday is important since both of us are now in our fifties. I felt hurt. I could get all the gifts and presents from everyone but I still look forward to receiving something from him, even a bouquet of flowers or just a wishing card would make my day.
 There was once, years ago when both of us were still working, he at one of the hotels on this island and I was with a Japanese travel agency. From inside my office I could see everything that moves outside. So, that day on my birthday, I saw a hotel van parked just outside my office. Then I saw the driver and his colleague pulled out flower bouquet and a cake from the back seat. I thought to myself then, how nice if those were for me. Surprisingly it did. The boys came into my office and straight away looked at me (well, I was the only Malay woman inside there, the rest were Japanese). They were like angels bringing me some pleasant gifts. "Miss, this is from Mr Ismail". I was shocked. That was so sweet of him. I said my thanks to the boys and while on their way out I saw one of them took out his mobile and called someone. Most probably my husband. Minutes later, while my colleague were admiring the bouquet and ogling the cake, I heard the fax ringing. As my colleague and I were about to cut and delve ourselves into the inviting cake, Mariko, shrieked, Rose-san, look at the fax. I took the fax and there written in bold letter was Happy Birthday and enjoy the cake. All of them were clapping with excitement. That was memorable. They were chattering in Japanese excitedly saying how lucky I was to have a thoughtful husband. That was then.
 I am not a romantic, well I was years ago but now I am not into this mushy stuff anymore. Though I still need some kind of acknowledgement from him that I matters to him.
We still get along well, we still can communicate with each other but like I said earlier,silently we fell into this static group. We were so well versed with one another that I know precisely what he wants or about to say by the slightest move he makes. Sophie once said to me, "Ma, you are creepy. Can you do that to all of us?"
I said yes so be very careful when any one of you think you can get away when trying to lie to me.

After my mastectomy, as you all know it, I was ashamed of myself and slowly I detached myself from him. After a while I felt sorry for him. So one day, I told him, I am giving him permission to find another wife. I don't want to feel guilty and living in sin by denying him his physical needs. For my non-Muslim readers, in Islam men are allowed to have four wives at any one time PROVIDED they can be fair in every way to their wives and to avoid adultery. Funny though to think I once told him when we were about to be married that if ever,ever he wants to have a second wife, I want him to let me go because I don't like sharing basis. Again in Islam, women cannot ask for a divorce just because we feel like it or lost interest in our husbands. We had to have a solid and good reasons according to syariah law. Thus, I warned him prior to us being husband and wife. Ironically, now, I am giving him a green light to find a second wife. See how mellowed I became.

I know, some women might think I went out of my mind. What? Letting her husband marrying another woman? She must be insane. I'd like to think it this way. The first reason was as per the above. The second reason, I will have some time to myself. I am a loner. I have always like being on my one. Not always but at times. Third reason, by allowing him to marry again, my responsibility was reduced to half. The second wife will take the other fifty percent of responsibility. I don't have to cook when I don't feel like it, I don't have to tidy up the house when don't feel like it and I can be in my pyjamas throughout the day without having to worry what my husband would think. The final reason is, I still have a husband to look and care after me. So what's to not like having your husband on sharing basis. From the way I see it, I am on the winning side.

My husband is a very quiet type. He keeps to himself most of the time. He's not the type to go around and throw a pick up lines to any woman. When we were young, he had a few serious flings but it was just a fling and was initialized by the girls not him. Whoa! Hang on, as for me, he came and court me okay. Not the other way round. I was a shy, terribly shy girl, remember, so there was no way I went after him (though he was cute then). Since I am on this topic about him, there was one incident I wish to share. I was furious then when it happened but now it sounded funny. There was this girl, his staff, who's got the hots for him  (did I use the right phrase?)  Some friends said she resembled me slightly. They would go out together for a drinks or watching football, etc.. I don't bother much since they were working together. But after a while things started to get a wee bit serious. She would call or page for him every now and then and the messages started to get and sound serious. By now I don't find it funny anymore. One evening she called. Quite late, close to eleven pm. We were all asleep. I picked up the phone angrily and said a groggy hello. It was quiet on the other side. I said hello again, still no response. I knew the line was still on because I could hear a weak thumping on the other side. A second later the line went dead. I knew right away it was the girl. I called the hotel and asked to speak to the girl. She came on the line and without any pleasantries I asked why did she call my house number.She denied strongly. I was hundred percent certain it was her. I asked again slowly why did she call? She was angry and said I was crazy to accuse her. I told her I was not stupid. "When the phone rang just now, I can hear a thump on the background. That indicates that the hotel is under renovation. Can you tell me how many hotels are there in Langkawi  and how many are under constructions? "
She went quiet. I continued, "Next time if you wish to speak to him just say so not just hanging up the phone. That's very rude and you're intruding our privacy ". What she didn't know was that I got the instinct of Mac Taylor and the head of Sherlock Holmes. I  placed down the phone and went back to sleep.

At times, I am tired of trying to please people. You can be chirpy and nice and go all your way out to make them feel good (especially those close to you) but they never seemed to appreciate what we are giving. It's like I want more and more and more but I won't give. I am the type of person who'd give and give and when I see and feel that it's not worth my time and not appreciated, I would turn myself cold towards that person. By then, it's too late. Yes I will still be nice but my heart was not in it anymore. I hated it when I turned that way.

Well, that's about it then. Heartache comes and goes. Like days and nights. We live and take things one at a time. Have a great weekend everybody.

Lots of love,
18th.May '13

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Sambal Tumis Sotong Special

Salam sekali lagi buat semua,

Hari ni mak cik Rose nak ajak buat sambal tumis special sikit. Tak banyak specialnya, sikit ja. Sambal tumis memang kegemaran orang melayu kan? Jadi walaupun semua orang tahu macam mana nak buat sambal tumis, mak cik Rose turunkan juga resipi dia, mana tau anak anak gadis kita yang baru nak mencuba2 di dapur.

Sambal tumis sotong kita buat hari ni. Ikut selera masing-masing lah nak masukkan jenis nya, ayam ke, udang ke, ikan ke atau apa-apapun.

Jom kita mulakan :

Sotong ( ikut banyak mana yg kita inginkan)
6 sudu besar cili kering yang dah dikisar
Bwg merah/ Bwg putih/ Sikit belacan ( semua di kisar sekali)
Sikit garam
1 sudu besar gula merah
1 sudu besar air asam jawa

Untuk hiasan:
Bwg besar di potong bulat dan daun bawang

Cara memasak :

1) Tumiskan bahan-bahan yg dikisar tadi

2) Bila dah agak kuning, masukkan cili dengan sikit air (dalam suku cawan dulu). Masak biar lama supaya
     cili masak elok.
    Separuh orang letakkan sikit rempah utk aromanya. Yg tu ikut hati kita.
3) Okay, bila cili dah masak elok, baru masukkan sotong. Jangan tak tau kalau dimasukkan terlalu awal ia
     akan menjadi agak liat pulak.
     Sekarang bolehlah masukkan gula merah (atau gula putih), garam dan air asam jawa.

Tips untuk sambal tumis yang lebih ummph nya . Kita boleh buat sambal tumis sotong kering (mungkin seminggu atau dua minggu sebelum tu) untuk di jadikan stok buat sambal tumis yang lain. Caranya, sambal tumis sotong kering tu, kita kisar semua sekali gus kemudian kita simpan di dalam chiller/freezer kita. Bila kita buat sambal tumis, contohnya sambal tumis sotong seperti diatas, bolehlah kita ambil dalam dua atau tiga sudu stok sambal sotong kering itu tadi dan dicampurkan kedalam sambal tumis kita hari ni. Rasanya memang sedap.

Dah siap sambal tumis sotong kita. Tak sampai lima belas minit pun nak masak dia.
Selamat mencuba and enjoy your lunch!

10th.May '13