Like previous years, this year's Raya celebration wasn't any different. Went home to my mother's place in Seremban on the eve of Eid, visited my in laws and went back on the second day to visit relatives in our kampung in Kuala Pilah. Hectic but enough fun for the children - catching up with their cousins and relatives from near and far.
During my Raya visits, as we traveled the long winding road to where kampung really is - Kuala Pilah, as the serene and calm atmosphere of life in the village came into view, I got to thinking – what if there was a swap? Instead of me visiting relatives in the kampung, it was me they were visiting. It was me tucked in the traditional kampung house. How different would life be? Instead of attending to clients in corporate office, I was now tending to chickens and ducks.
If I lived here, what would I look like? And how is my lifestyle?
Funny that some of these thoughts came in to mind at this juncture in my life. It had been a rough month in a couple of ways. So many challenges I am faced both at work and home front brought me to thinking of the what if's. These events occur – causing me to stop, reflect and re-evaluate the many facets in my life that I have comprised.
As we visited one relative's house to the next, I felt a bit sad. Although the old kampung house looked the same, but as faith had it, we had lost a number of our dear ones. An aunt spoke very dearly of her husband who had passed on two years ago. I recall those early days in my marriage when the couple used to fuss over lemang and rendang during our Raya visit and how they insisted that we had enough to feast ourselves plus packed some home later. They were simple folks but they sure had such a big heart.
Then we met another aunt who has been providing loyal care to her ill husband. The old man who is almost 80 now, suffers from diabetes and selective amnesia. It isn't easy she said but she is left with no other choice. Tempers would flare once in a while but one could see that she's not going anywhere but be with her man – in sickness or in health till death do them part, remember?
I wonder had it been me – would I be able do it? Would I be as loyal as my aunt? Would I be willing to sacrifice my own physical and emotional needs? Will there be feelings of anger, anxiety, sadness, isolation, exhaustion? And how would I deal with it?
Now, reflecting back on all the choices I made in life, I hoped these choices will help make bring happiness and contentment. I know some have and some not – well maybe not yet. I tell myself that occasionally, events will occur. And during these periods I may need to re-evaluate and re-prioritize things, abandon what does not belong or is making life difficult and stressful, and seek out what truly matters.
If we didn't give it a try we would never know, would we?