Continuation from Mak 1.0
My heart ached for her. "Allah, please don't let her die, please, please, let her stay alive. I've not told her that I love her!" "I've not spent enough time talking to her. I've been busy with work. I've been busy with my husband. I've been busy tending to my kids. I've been busy traveling. I've been busy doing other things, but spent time with her. I've been neglecting her!".
"So Allah, please, please give me another chance so that I would be able to spend more time with her and allow me an opportunity to tell her how much I love her!" I fervently and quietly prayed to Allah.
And my mind flashed back to 1984, 1986, 1989. When mak heard that I was almost due, she rushed to KL to be with me when I delivered my babies respectively in 1984, 1986, and 1989. That's mak - never failing her duty as a mum even though I myself was going to be a mum.
In 1984, when I delivered my first child, a son, mak came down from Penang to be with me a few weeks before I delivered. It was just as well, as my first bundle of joy decided to peep into this world 2 weeks ahead of schedule.
And every night, she would begged me to hand over the baby to her so that she could take care of him to allow me to sleep peacefully. I was adamant in not allowing the the baby to be with her, as I wanted to spare her from having a sleepless night, and more importantly, I wanted to care for my baby myself as I was nursing him and I was steadfast in my stand not to bottle feed him while I was at home.
Mak took great care of me and my baby, giving me delicious pantang food and making sure that the baby was well taken care of, given that this was my first child.
And in 1986, along came another son. The little rascal followed his brother's footsteps by peeking into the world ahead of schedule, this time 15 days earlier. Hence, Mak couldn't make it in time for his delivery, but she rushed to the hospital, together with ayah, upon hearing that I had given them another grandchild.
Again, she took great pains to cook yummy pantang food and helped to take care of my eldest son, while I tend to, and nursed the new kid on the block.
My second son, Khairil was sickly as a baby. He developed asthma and it was a challenge taking care of him, as the slightest irritation can trigger an attack. When he was 2 years old, he had an acute asthma attack. Thank God, Mak was with me at that time, so when we rushed him to the hospital, Mak took care of Khairul, our eldest child. Mak, was always there, when I needed her. She was truly my tower of strength.
In 1989, I was pregnant again, and this time, mak came down a month ahead of time to be with me, as she knew my history of delivering babies well ahead of time. She was spot on as Khairina (my little girl) decided to beat her brothers by venturing outside the womb, 22 days ahead of my due date.
On the day I went into labour, Mak prepared me well for this delivery as she recited special Quranic verses and apply Air Kacip Fatimah on my tummy when the contractions started.
That morning, I had a check-up at Assunta Hospital. And because of my past history, I decided to pack the necessities in a bag and also took my mum along for my check-up.
And when the doctor did an IE, he was shocked to discover that I was already dilated. So, I was pushed to the labour room. Nevertheless, I recalled him mentioning that even though I was dilated, it'll take a few hours before I delivered. And I still remembered the nurse telling him to go for breakfast after he had examined me.
But, lo and behold, even before he could step out of the labour room, I could fill a very strong urge to push. And at that time, the nurse had not even prepared me fully, i.e, my hands were not at the hand bar to pull, and my legs were not positioned properly on the push bar.
As the urge to push grew stronger, I screamed and when the doctor turned, he realised that the baby's head was almost crowning. He rushed in and I actually delivered within 30 minutes of the onset of the first contraction.
Mak, if not for you, my deliveries would not be so effortless and almost painless. Due to God's grace and your faith in the special water of Air Kacip Fatimah, and your relentless effort in reciting the Quranic verses, I had a wonderfully easy births for all my deliveries.
Mak, I also recalled how excited you were, for me, I believe, when Amir told you that I had delivered a little girl, because you knew how much I wanted a girl.
In fact, when I was pregnant with Khairina, I had this strong instinct that I was carrying a girl, the feeling was so different from when I was carrying Khairil, because at that time, I knew I was going to have another boy.
During my entire pregnancy with Khairina, the name "Khairina" kept surfacing in my head, maybe because the two boys' names begin with Khai, so I decided to use "Khairina" as my computer and email password (I was using a totally different password before).
It was really uncanny and amusing that I did not select any boy's name this time around. And when she came along, I told ayah that I had aptly chosen "Khairina" as the first part of her name and I gave him the opportunity to select the 2nd part of her name.
Ayah then consulted the Babies Names book and carefully selected "Izzati" which means...
Mak doted on little Khairina, and bought her lots of little dresses. And it was during these period before 1993 (my last delivery), that I had noticed little things about her which did not seem right.
Sometimes, when she was trying to put on her slippers, she'd just slipped on one side and left the other one behind, without even realising it. I was later told, that that was the first signs of stroke. When she was in Penang, she used to tell us that sometimes, when she was trying to turn the door knob, she would fall to the floor. Again, another sign of weakening of the body system.
But, mum being mum, she refused to believe and think that there could be anything wrong with her, so she gallantly kept on doing household chores and taking care of my dad. And occasionally, she would come down to KL to spend time with her 8 children and the growing number of grandkids.
She kept her house spotlessly clean. When everyone has long retired to bed, she would still be scrubbing the floor until it's spotless. She would not stop until everything is kept away and clean.
Mak, I miss you so. I long to touch you. I miss your warmth, your caring voice, your special touch, your superb dishes, your deep concern and scarifices for all your kids.
And I remembered once again 1993. That was the year I gave birth to my youngest child, a son.
To be continued.