The Ease

"Bonda, Ikhlas rasa bumi sakit la. Sebab tu jadi macam ni."

(Ikhlas, 8 tahun)

I have a sister and a younger brother who are both doctors working at different hospitals. Though I may not show it or say it out loud, I worry about their wellness and safety every day since the outbreak. I mention them in my prayers, along with my elderly parents whose whereabouts I cannot control as we're not living under the same roof.

A few hours ago, my elder brother shared his relief with us family. Relief that his area has zero new cases as of today. He works at the district office and has been on duty at the disaster control operation center. I congratulated him on the news. Never have I thought I would one day congratulate my elder brother for not having anyone dying.

It's a trying time for all of us.

Not just Malaysians, but all of us citizens of the world. I'm so grateful for our country's MOH. As my sibs are out there dealing with the impact of this pandemic, at home I began to reflect on my role.

I started homeschooling my son today, and I discovered that many educational websites are currently slowed down due to heavy traffic. I could imagine how moms of school kids all over the globe are homeschooling their children right now, probably feeling concerned as much as I am.

Generally speaking, I feel okay most of the time. Whenever I feel overwhelmed, I would give myself a break from the screen. Because anxiety and panic does creep in every once in a while, making me question what else can I do besides just staying at home. Then I remember my dad told me to recite do'a qunut in the last raka'at of every solat. It's a sunnah for going through a difficult period. So I try to practice it. And it does give me a sense of peace.

Coincidentally a few weeks ago, before all these chaos took place, my husband printed a copy of do'a qunut and put it up on our wall at home. The wall where we face everytime we pray. He did so because my son and I often got our do'a qunut all mixed up and jumbled up. Who would've thought it'd be so useful. Now I'm just really glad that it's there.

My son today, for some reason, hugged me and said to me this one same thing, again and again:

"Bonda, you're the best mom in the whole world."

Oh, my heart.

I don't know why he repeatedly said that, but I think God wants me to remember my role in this moment of test. And that no one exists without significance.

This partial lockdown, this quarantine phase, could possibly prolong for up to 6 months. It is and will be affecting so many of us mentally, emotionally, physically, socially, and economically. But I decided that it will not in any way lessen my role as a homemaker and as a member of our society. My job is to create comfort within chaos; to maintain a home within a house. It doesn't have to be perfect.

I love where I live. So much. It's nothing grand, but it's where I feel safe and belong. My house is the nest that I wanna fly home to after every crazy storm. I appreciate our humble shelter more than ever now. Whether we all believe it or not, we need this experience for reasons we have yet to find out.

Rabbi yassir wa la tu'assir. May God ease and may this end with goodness.

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