Consoling Her

She tried to distract herself. She talked. She listened. She even threw her most entertaining chuckle but her heart won’t let her rest. She tried again with different people, with different theme but the big thick cloud is still expanding and drizzling silently inside of her.

She closed her eyes. She tried meditating. Maybe she could ignore this one, probably soon it will go away.

Like always. Nobody has to know. No one likes a sad story and she had too much of them. She wished that she could bottle them all up and throw away everything to the ocean where she could set her soul free. Forgive them, she told herself.

She’s not sure if she could forget.

Focus. Inhale. Exhale. This too will soon pass.

But this is too much. Where should she do it this time? In the shower? Somebody would notice, doesn’t it being inside too long. She can’t do it in the room. There is another person there. Questions would be asked. Information would be dispersed and extracted. Rumors would be spread.

Why can’t she do it alone? Why is it so difficult to cry?

Maybe when the other person is fast asleep. That will do.

So she waited and waited and the time came. She didn’t dare to sob. It feels like a dam on the verge of breaking, she barely contained it all but the pain drips one tiny drop after one, endlessly and she couldn’t stop for hours until the dam was empty.

How would she look tomorrow? She was horrified just thinking about it. What will people think?

Stupidly, she cried some more.

Oh, what the hell. She probably will die like this too.

In the dark she saw a pair of eyes, yellow and blinking. Purring, he silently climbed onto the bed and sat on her pillow looking in her eyes.

Don’t look at me. Go to sleep.

She stroked his black fur and hopefully feel fine after this.

You wouldn’t understand.

He probably didn’t but he did a bold move. He came closer, kiss her face and lick her tears.

Must have been salty, she smiled. Oh, stop it! She started to giggle but still he couldn’t stop. He kissed her nose, her eyes, her face, her hands, the lot. He knew she was squeamish and ignored her protests to stop this nonsense this instant!

So this is your idea of consoling me?

Well, someone has to console her and he was there.

Thank God for furry little creatures!

Favor

You are sad. You want to say something. You have this terrible pain in your heart. You want it out, as soon as possible.

I’m here. Start with what happened.

I promise you won’t catch a glance of me watching the television, or texting my best friend about the latest online gossip or yawning or chatting online with my faithful laptop.

I am here. Tell me what’s bothering you.

You know you can trust me. You start pouring your heart out. You state your doubts, your options, your choices, your problems, your solutions. You may even cry or grew teary at certain points of explanation.

Go on. Feel free to do anything. I am giving you my full attention, my time and both my ears to listen. I’m all yours.

You sniffed. It’s all over. You feel better. You’re relieved that it’s out. You smile. You might even give a big hug to say thank you for listening. If you don’t want the secret out in the public then you must not forget to mention but you know that I am as good as my words. You sleep tight.

I twisted and turned. I thought of you. Poor little soul, tortured. How can I help? I don’t have anything that might help you. I have no money, no power, nothing that I own could give you that sense of completion.

But I know one person that can! I trust Him with my life.

So I asked Him for a favor. Please, I have a friend in need. I have nothing to offer but You can. I am weak, another wretched soul in unknown faces of similar crowd but You need to help this person as this is very important. I’d do anything. I’d give my time, my words, my soul. I’d even give up my longing for food if that’s the favor that I could do.

Please. I beg You.

Let it be easy, let it be light. Let it be more strength than the person would imagine. Let it be happiness, let it be true. Let it be bright enough that all the dark pain washed through.

Don’t tell this person that I asked You.

Take all You want from me. I have nothing else to lose. Let this debt settled between me and You.

All I need is a tiny little smile from you. So next time when you see me, tell me how do you do. I hope everything is all fine and you’re blessed with all good news. Tell me how it goes again, how did you get that light in your eyes? Tell me again how you laughed and how you thought this rainy days would never end. You said thank you for listening, that I am a good friend.

I said it’s o.k. That’s why I’m here. (Thank You. Thank You. Thank You. I owe You one.)

I came home and I told You that I could never thank You enough. Take some more of me. I don’t care. Let it last.

But good news don’t last forever. You’ll see me again and ask me to listen.

I, of all the people!

So I ask You to listen because you matter to me.

If only I could matter that much to you.

Wake Up Call: The World Needs You Now

This is a beautiful poem by Rachel Snyder, a talented artist with words. Her blog is http://rachelsnyder.wordpress.com/ where you can find more poems. I am in love with this one in particular.

The world needs you now.

  More than you know.
More than you can imagine.

The world needs your gifts.
Your heart.
Your compassion.
Your understanding.

Your ability to listen
To speak
To feel
And to act.

The gifts that only you can give,
In the way that you and you alone can give them.

The time for holding back is over.

The time for believing that you are not good enough,
Not ready enough
Not wise enough
Has passed.

The time for fearing that you are too good,
Too powerful
Too magnificent
Too intelligent,
No longer exists.

You have run out of excuses.

You have exhausted every reason why you cannot be
Exactly who you were placed here to be.

Your usual distractions no longer distract.
Your strategies for staying small
For resisting the call to awaken
Are dead.

The world needs you now,
More than you know.

In the Great Circle of Life,
A space has been held for you
Since before Time began.

As you wandered, as you explored,
Your shoes waited, marking your place.

No one else approached,
For these shoes could only be filled by you.
You agreed to step into them when you were ready
To take your rightful place on the Circle.

And now, you are ready.

You are bored with your own self-absorption.
You choke and gag on your endless self-reflection and
Your belly is filled with an urgency
To leave jobs behind and embrace your real Work.

Now, at the exact moment that the world needs you,
You have uncovered and recovered and discovered enough
So that your authentic self can see the light of day.

So that you can step into the shoes that have been
Waiting for you since before time began.

Every moment that you delay,
Widens the hole in the web of existence.

For you are an essential ingredient,
Without which Creation is incomplete.
Global harmony rests in the palm of your hand.
Planetary peace will simply not be attained without
Your heart
Your mind
Your spirit.

The world needs you
And the world needs you now.

More than you know.

                                         More than you can ever imagine.



Paying Kindness

I was introduced to Random Act of Kindness when I was 16. Our English class teacher, Miss Nora distributed an article published in Singapore. The title was ‘Kindness Week.’

Huh?

Why Kindness Week? The same obvious reason why we don’t have Eat-More-Nasi-Lemak-Week.

We are lacking in kindness. Kindness, an element that has been cooperated in our blood, from the start of our being being composed. Its supposed to be our own natural compound.

Seen anyone helping a robbery attempt? Seen anyone helping a blind to cross the road? Seen anyone that really cares about their neighbor? Seen a car give its way to another without honking or a middle finger?

Is it true, then?

Kindness is quite common among peers or colleagues or neighbors, people that we know. But what about strangers? Would you help a person whom you’ll never see again? Would you consider helping a strange person on the street and never expect anything from him but good tidings?

In Malaysia, I have experienced numerous experience with kindness. I was short RM0.10 for my ticket to go back home and I asked another student if she could lend me RM0.10. She gave me more than I needed. A smile and a ringgit. Hawkers would give free goods or food. An Indian in Banting once helped me carry my luggage and asked everyone to give way for me. A cab driver said my ride was free because I was in such panic that my house was robbed though the meter said RM9.

Simple things that made me believe in goodness in human nature.

But when you throw caution to the wind, assume everything about you is perfect and you’ll be well look after, bought a one way ticket to Frankfurt and hope that ‘everything would be alright in the end.’ then you must be barking mad. Things could go from bad to worse to the point of no return but in the end, kindness saves the day.

It always does.

I once arrived in Seville at 3 AM and was scared. I can’t find a hotel, nor the way. There are drunk people, more people taking a night stroll and people coming and going to the bar. I stopped a lady to ask the way but it was useless. I got lost again. I was at the back of a street when I saw an old man and asked him for the directions. He was sleepy, locking his bike’s chain near the entrance of his apartment and suddenly he was wide awake.

He unbolted his bike. He brought me to another hotel nearby, cycling merrily, make sure that I have a place to stay and then wave goodbye. I had half of the price and I stayed for 3 days.

A Portuguese man tried to harass me and minutes after telling that to an Englishman who happen to sat nearby, the poor guy was punched (in a double decker bus) in the face and received a long sermon about not touching respectable ladies. Another Polish man was shoved out of the same bus by another Englishman because he was not done sniffing my hair. An Irish chef baked me a cheesecake because I just happen to be a Muslim, same like him.

That is the sole reason why I love traveling. I meet so many nice people (and not-so-nice ones) but they are worth it.

Why not try it? Kindness is good for you.

Start small.

Talk to strangers. Write thank you notes to old teachers. Invite a friend for lunch. Help someone to carry their heavy bags. Just be nice to a person.

Listen. It takes courage to truly listen. Sorrow has too many faces.

It’s unbelievable that such little things can make you feel like you’re standing on top of the World!

[Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle, Plato]

Kind People

Old post.

We meet a lot of kind people every day. There are some that we knew, some that do it because they are nice people, some that do it intentionally so that one day when they need to ask a favor from you then you would have no reason to say no and some people that we didn’t know but they do it anyway because kindness is in their blood.

Today a woman who sells curry puff at Ampang Park called me ‘sayang’ and gave me another sardine puff (for free!), which made my day because (I already bought 5 puffs) sardine puff is the best thing ever invented after the invention of wheels!

I feel on top of the world!

Everyday I would pass her stall. It was strategically placed near the LRT station and also the bus station. She would be surrounded by dozens of customers. There’s a lot to handle by one person. Her hands would go from this Tupperware to that Tupperware, plastic bags, a worn handkerchief, the money bag then asking the same thing from her customers “Nak apa?” then repeat the same routine all over again. The stall was set up with two folded tables, which sometimes refused to stand properly. On days that she worries most she would set just one table and the rest of the tupperwares would be hiding in the bushes (as if they were there naturally.) One day I saw all her tupperwares hiding in the bushes while it’s still full of puffs, sandwiches and other Malaysian common kuih for breakfast.

“Why, what happened?”

“Bandaran is coming!”

“Aah..”

This woman is not a Malaysian and I assume that the business needs a permit. Her accent placed her birthplace somewhere in Indonesia. Sometimes she would bring her mother to help her along but the mother is the paranoid one. She always sees the authorized person coming up to them from nowhere to throw them all out and she would give the alarm to the poor worried soul of her daughter. Both quickly pack up and run while the person they fears most was advancing towards them. When they realized it was a false alarm then the daughter would complain on top of her lungs.

“You made me worried for nothing!”

The mother’s face was crestfallen. I have seen that face a thousand times. How she reminds me of my mother. She was only trying to help. She would try and make things up for her daughter by helping her set up the stall again but then she would be pushed aside. Still she smiles and every time she sees the customer, especially me and then we would joke at her expense. What funny way for two grown up woman to play hide and seek, no?

I passed their stall for 2 years every day during my trip to work (I walk for 40 minutes.) It’s the drama I enjoy most. How those kind but terrified people serving us every day and asking little in return except for acceptance. It must be scary to be in a foreign country trying to adapt to local custom and local taste and local people.

She was never rude. She attends to each customer with quiet patience. She trusts them. When you took that plastic bag and fill in all sort of your favorite kuih and then she would ask you “how many?” and you would provide your answer. She would never test if it were correct or not. Whatever answer given would be given a price, a correct price and off you go with your prize. Many in her shoes will not give that privilege when there is too much at stake.

I honor her trust. She is a kind person and I hope that she’d get her compensation. I just wish that she would quit worrying and erase that frown on her face. I never did saw her smile until this morning when she said, “Oh heck, it’s not every day.”

This is my favorite drama every morning. It’s not every day you would recognize a kind person who has nothing to do with you, just happens that she sits in your path to go to work and you’re not even a regular customer but she decided to give you RM0.40 of her sweat and fears for free.

God bless you!