I'm writing this because suddenly I feel like I need to. Because this person played a very important role in my growth. I consider her to be too old now, and I don't want to be writing this when she is gone, because she showed and taught as many things as she can to me. I hope anyone who reads this post, who knows her will tell her that I wrote this for her. No I won't tell her of course! Why? Because I'll cry before I get to end what I want to say. Yeah, I want her to know that I wrote this for her.
She's my grandmother. The one who has the life impossible to believe. The one who once walked with kings and ministers and great women, the one who always cooked for us (and yes, no one could beat her in the kitchen).. and now she's too fragile even to take care of herself.
I always observe her and I will always have the thinking that growing old is not fun at all. Especially after the age of 60s.
She came from a great family background. The family that brewed a few of the earliest national figures, and she herself was among those were involved in the the party who sought independence for the country. During her leisure time, she would be giving cooking lessons at the WI. I am proud of the fact that she was well-known. But the history has left us so far.. she could not really catch up with those days anymore.. only the stories of what is left in her mind.
She took care of us since we were mere infants. She taught us to recite the Muqaddam, to sing nursery rhymes, learn English and Math, and she would cook for us the wondrous dishes.. among our favorites were terutup, pajeri, masak kurma, masak semur, roast chicken, nasi tomato, roti canai sardin, roti jala,.. in short, we just name it. Whatever she cooked, it melted our senses. No matter how long it took for her to cook something, it never bothered her.
When I stepped into primary school, there were a few things that was hard for me to get. Like 'tolak-pinjam' mathematical operation in Standard 2. When she was trying to clear things for me, I was like, "how on earth can numbers know how to borrow. I thought only humans do that!" and I still remember how I told her to justify why the sound of the word 'knife' was pronounced without the 'k' sound. She seldom got mad at this cucu loyar buruk. In fact, to what I can remember, she never did. I used to hate playing 'congkak' with her, because I knew I would lose, but she was always generous of teaching me the strategy to win, even though I was full of resentment.
And every time I aced my exams, she would tell my siblings that I was exemplary. It made me feel great. No need fancy gifts. A praise like that was all I need. It was good in my quest to boost self-confidence.
There was one day, when she followed my sister and I to school, because we asked her to become our supporter for our all girl-band to perform during Teacher's Day. She came to cheer for us, and we won the juries' vote. Knowing that she was not so well, we were really touched by her gesture.
During exam seasons, she would be constantly performing solat hajat for us. She even knew what subjects we were sitting for each day. And when we got back from school feeling tired of answering the exams, she would make us lie down and massage our foreheads while reciting some doa.
She's a great fighter too. Dark life episodes, deadly diseases came her way. We thought we would lose her. But she made it through. That is also one of the reasons why I really believe she is an iron lady with a life impossible to believe.Yeah, who would believe if she told that she had dinner at the table together with the late Sultan of Johor? Well, we saw the pictures a few times before..
But yeah.. right now, age is really catching up with her.. and I feel bad of watching it.. I really miss the days when she was up and about. Thank God that my mom is watching her closely, like how my grandmother used to care for her mother, our great grandmother.
If any of you guys who knows her is reading this, please tell her that I wrote this for her.
To my sisters and brother, let's cherish her while she's here with us. We know she means the world to us. So let's prove it.