Finding My Way Home

I guess I should've mentioned this earlier. I'm back in Malaysia!

I arrived safely on Tuesday night, alhamdulillah. I'm happy to be back with my family and it's so good to see my Mum again. I never told you guys this but I spent the last three months in New Zealand on my own for the first time ever. In the beginning I found it very hard. I had to do everything on my own and I didn't have the family support I was so used to. It was especially hard for me because I'm doing my post-grad at the moment and it's a completely different experience compared to being an undergrad. It's double (possibly triple?) the workload and my lecturers have high expectations therefore I'm constantly pushing myself thus always feeling tired and overworked. I remember being in the elevator with a classmate after we finished a three-hour lecture on a Monday afternoon and she said meekly, 

"Oh... I'm so tired."

"Oh my God, me too!" I exclaimed.

"Yeah, no, I don't have a social life anymore," she went on.

"No way! I thought I was the only one," I said with an odd sense of relief. 

Truth be told, I'm exhausted and I have a million things on my mind. All I want is to just be at home and with my family right now. Alhamdulillah, Allah's given me that opportunity. Believe it or not, I still have an assignment due next week. It never ends. Sometimes I kick myself for continuing my studies instead of graduating last year but I know this is what I've always wanted and I have to make sacrifices. I'm also good at keeping myself busy and doing more than what I really should. Too good, if you ask me. If you're familiar with Marxism, well, I definitely see myself as a human being who believes that the essence of my existence is in performing labour.

That's how I measure my self worth.

So I read, contemplated, articulated, wrote and I continued to do so even if it meant sleeping a mere few hours a day. I always wished we could have more hours in a day so I could get everything done. Unsurprisingly, I fell sick and I was always fatigued. There were days I was so tired that I couldn't fall asleep. Nevertheless, I never wouldn't have gotten through these past three months without God's protection and guidance and the support of my wonderful and caring friends in Dunedin. And I know I'm extremely lucky to have a supervisor who is very encouraging. He believes in my potential and is constantly trying to draw the best out of me.

As much as I love what I do, it's time for me to be with my family right now. I need to be away from the world. I also need to focus on my deen. I'm still learning how to balance dunya and akhirah. These days I feel so distant from Allah azza wa jal (the Mighty and Majestic) and I desperately want to strengthen my relationship with my Creator. I need to feel at home again and there's no feeling at "home" quite like feeling close to Allah subhana wa taala (the Glorious and Exalted).

It's clear to me what I need right now is to find my way home once again...


Ayuni A. said…
Welcome home Sha :)
R S said…
hello there!

its exam season for me atm and I feel somewhat distant from Allah, too. =( I'm not used to summer solat times and I always seem to miss it or do my prayers in a rush. bad me!

and heyy you want more hours in a day too! my latest blog post talks about my struggle with time. =D

either way, I know u can do it. u have so much determination. u just gotta keep pushing yourself. your hard work will bear fruit in no time. =) have faith.

lots of love!
Shahirah Elaiza said…
yunayuni: Thank you!

RS: Hello right back atcha missy. Yes I've missed prayers in the midst of my never-ending stream of assignments too. Thank you so much for your words of comfort *hugs* I perceive time differently these days. I keep track of hours instead of days lol but I remind myself that at the end of the day my hard work and sacrifice will be worth it inshaAllah. I would regret not giving my all.
noname said…
dear,may i know u study in what course? :)
Anonymous said…
Sister, the best advice I can give anyone in this situation is to give your best to your studies AND to Allah. If you’re up studying late, try to throw in night prayers or some dikir. Listen to Quran on headphones when rushing around, it helps to remind the heart and keep it humble. I know it’s hard, but God sees how hard we work and dedicate ourselves to our jobs/education/family life, and He derseves nothing less.

Zara A said…
Salaam Sister Sha,

Awwwww, I've missed you so much! I've just nearly completed my final exams (2 More to go!) Alhamdulilah they've gone well, except Maths. But I just want to say I've been feeling the exact same way and like Sister RS!
Insha'Allah I hope to just find myself in hope I come closer to Allah (SWT)Ameen.

Insha'Allah I hope to catch up soon
This always tends to happen during exam time, your head is everywhere and you're just trying to find the balance and the time. And don't even talk about the sleep!

take this time out to focus on your relationship with the Almighty and have a little bit of me time too. Focus on the positive and stay strong!
Shahirah Elaiza said…
Raja: I major in Communication Studies and minored in Politics and Marketing.

Stranger: JazakAllah khair for your advice. I listen to recitation of the Holy Qur'an while working on my assignments. It definitely helps to calm me down.

Zara: Salaam sis! Did you get my reply to your e-mail? I hope so. I've missed reading your comments. InshaAllah your exams are going well. Only 2 more to go, yay! Yup, I feel like I have a lot to catch up on in terms of my deen as well. May Allah swt give us the guidance we need. Hope to see you around here a lot more soon *hugs*

Smiley: My mind is definitely EVERYWHERE. I really do need some time to sort out my thoughts. Thank you for your words of positivity, as always.
Elisa said…
What are you studying? I have debated whether or not to continue on to grad school once I finish my B.A. this August. I'm leaning more towards a NOOOOO at the moment. LoL I'm sure one day down the road I will go back though. I love love love learning and wouldn't mind being a full time student if that's ALL I would have to do. It's a full time job in itself :-) Good luck to you and I pray Allah makes it easy on you.
Also, I will pray you feel a closer to connection to Allah (swt). It's only natural for us humans to have these ups and downs, but I know how terrible it can feel when it's down. It's almost like you feel lost and in a dark hole. Now that I have experience the beauty of high faith, nothing else compares!
Please feel free to talk to me about ANYTHING if you ever need someone to confide in. You have been such a loving sister to myself and it would be an honor to comfort you in any way I can.
I love you!
aishah amin said…
you here already! yay!:))