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"Everyone is working very hard because Hari Raya is just around the corner. The extra money will come in handy. But working hard is nothing new to me. After all, I am a woman"

Picture by Humans of Malaya

Sometime earlier this year, in the holy month of Ramadhan, a Facebook friend by the name of Mek Yam whom I came to know through my husband Ahmad Cendana posted the above photo on her timeline. The caption had me frozen for more than a few seconds, not really realising why. But there was something obvious in Mek Yam's comment, something that had inspired me to write this post spontaneously...her acute awareness and consciousness. She wrote:

"She's beautiful! imagine facing that heat and looking this cool, the amazing secret of the Malaysian woman."

Mek Yam posts and shares numerous amazing pictures everyday on her Facebook wall. Some are beautiful scenery from places all over the world, many are of adorable animals or plants, fruits and flowers of very rare species. Occasionally they are of unusual gadgets and foods. But I think, Mek Yam's favourite is photos of people, real people of all races and nationalities, tribes and communities. 

Many would have passed the seemingly blasé  picture above as just a normal, typical face of a Malay woman working for an income. But not Mek Yam...she saw something much more. She sees things in people many don't. And I believe she feels them too. 

The caption above and Mek Yam's comment had struck a chord in my heart and tugged at it, even as I write this. The woman above may be one who enjoys doing what she does and working just to supplement the household income. But there are countless women out there who have to struggle everyday and work hard to bring food to the table, education for the children and shelter for the family. 

Many have to do this without their own transport, equipped with ill-health, lack of sleep, food and nutrition and worse of all, without a husband for support. Some are literally without a husband by status, death or divorce. But the saddest are those who do have a husband, but one that instead of providing for the wife and children, lives off her. Just like a parasite. And the worse of all, men who not only expect the woman to put food on the table, but tops it all off with physical, mental and emotional abuse.

Sometimes I wonder, how the woman gets herself into such a situation. It may have started out as love, pity and then blind submission. I have written about women who can't find it in them to love themselves in my post A Bedtime Story. Either the woman is too weak to refuse her husband's demands and allows herself to be her husband's punch bag, or she is so strong that she is willing to takeover the role the family's breadwinner. I believe, it is the latter.

One thing for sure, many, if not most women would do it for her children. This is where she generates her strength. I suppose this is why God chose the women to carry babies for nine months in their bellies and not the men. Because, as the woman in the picture aptly puts it, "...working hard is nothing new to me. After all, I am a woman".

It's almost the end of October, and my husband Ahmad Cendana's birthday on the 12th of this month came and went without a post here for him. Not that it's in a pre-nuptial agreement or anything, it's just that we had "met" in his Recovery blog and I think it's nice to present him with a post on mine for each of his birthday. 

But things have been quite hectic, with Eidul Adha falling on the 15th, the introduction  of a new product and a few other "excitements" including a break-in at the clinic. Thank God nothing much was taken except for some money in a cash box, and all my remedies and equipment were left untouched by the intruder. 

Besides the time, energy and focus I'd have to give to this commitment, I knew what I would be facing once I start this upgrading exercise...tests, trials and tribulations. But my practice is almost my whole life, I don't know if there is anything that I wouldn't do for it. So I have to accept whatever is in store for me and brace myself. For nothing makes me happier than to know that God Almighty has granted healing and my patients are well after the treatments and healing sessions.

There isn't anyone who knows this better than my husband. And despite being married to him for more than two years now, it still surprises me that he seems to know exactly what I'm thinking or feeling. I hadn't expected him to be so supportive of what I do. I had told him that during the initiation period, I would have to do lengthy incantations after my Subuh prayers, and that it would extend way past dawn. At night I would be on the prayer mat from dusk for the Maghrib prayer right through Isyak prayer about an hour and a half later. 

That meant he'd have to wait for his breakfast which he looks very forward to. And at dinner time, he would have to help himself and eat alone. He would be left on his own while I attended full day classes. Yet he didn't protest or show any displeasure at all. My desire to commit myself further into spiritual healing didn't bother him one bit. In fact he seemed to be in full support of my decision. He was so understanding it moved me and almost made me cry.

I wonder if he realises how much his open-heartedness means to me. I know for a fact that many husbands would not allow their wives to do spiritual healing. Then there are those who are not in the least interested in what their wives do. Not only does my husband allow me but also vehemently supports what I do. Many times he even contributes when he opines on certain difficult cases I'm handling. He is genuinely interested and concerned in everything I do in relation to the practice, no matter how small or trivial. This is so crucial - it provides me the strength, motivation and inspiration I need. And my patients are the biggest benefactors of this synergy between us.

This marriage of ours is by no means by chance or coincidence; each and every happening was charted and planned by the Master of Plans. We both have seen the wonders of His superiority over every matter, at every angle. But the Master plan is far from completion and very much elusive to us. Many pieces in the jigsaw puzzle have yet to be placed and there will be uncertainties, misplacements and misjudgements all the way. 

But we know well enough that God's plans are so perfect we needn't be afraid of what's in store for us, and the pieces will eventually fit to form the big picture. Whatever happens, good or bad, it is, to His profound knowledge, the best for us and exactly what we need. As my husband says, we just have to keep doing the right things. Until we have fit all the pieces together, together.   

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