Wednesday, 22 December 2004

Happy Birthday Dearest

2 important people in my life celebrate their birthdays in December. My elder sister, Kak Yah, celebrates hers on 16 December while my younger brother, Adik, celebrates his on 18 December.

Kak Yah and Adik are special in their own ways and yet they share a common trait – they are devout Muslims. Religious as they are, they never make us feel we are in any way lesser than them or try to shove sermons down our throat. Their humility and mannerism speak volumes of their religious stand and I’m hoping that I too, will tread the same path some day.

Kak Yah is my big sister in many ways. First, physically, she is bestowed with a well endowed figure. I shall not delve further into that, though. What touches me is not her big frame, but her big heart. When I was a kid, she would sew clothes for my doll, clip my fingernails, buy me books and introduce me to the likes of Hensel & Gretel, Rapunzel, Secret Garden and many more. She spoke to me with that gentle voice of hers and encouraged me to memorise the surahs of the Quran. At one point, under her guidance, I managed to memorise the whole of Muqaddam.

Sometimes, the strong woman beneath that demure image would surface if provoked. One particular incident was when I was about 10, and she, 17. That afternoon, she took her nap as she usually did in the prayers room at home. I peeked on her and without any reason at all, gave her a slap on the face! She woke up with a start and proceeded to run after me. I ran to the living room and she managed to control her temper without inflicting any harm on me, or so it seemed at that moment. Later, on that same day, I was asleep in the living room when suddenly I felt a slap on my cheek. I woke up and cried. Kak Yah got her revenge and I learnt never to provoke her again.

Now, Kak Yah is happily married to Abg Wan. She’s doing a good job raising their big family and expanding her already big figure.

Adik has a special place in my heart for many reasons. He’s my only younger sibling. While my sisters were busy gossiping about school (and boys), Adik was the one who had time to play with me. He was with me all the time. I dragged him everywhere and even influenced him to join me to the river without my Mother’s knowledge, skip Quran classes, and many other mischievous stuff. If there are any black dots on his heart, I could be the reason for that. He joined me at boarding school and later on, to England. Despite the same upbringing, we turned out very different people. He is everything that is good and pure, while I am a complex mixture of many colours. Nevertheless, we do not let the differences come in the way of our relationship.

Beneath the surface of his cool image, there’s a fire that could flare in one instant if ignited. Maturity and religion helps him to keep it in check.

Now, Adik is happily married to Lin. He has a good job with an Oil & Gas company and I’m so proud of my little brother who has turned into a fine young man.

To these 2 special people, Happy Belated Birthday. May your life be filled with happiness. It’s a blessing to be your sister. I love you.

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