THEY WILL ASK thee as to what they should spend on others. Say: "Whatever of your wealth you spend shall [first] be for your parents, and for the near of kin, and the orphans, and the needy, and the wayfarer; and whatever good you do, verily, God has full knowledge thereof." - Al-Baqarah (2:215)

Thursday, 17 May 2012

3 children, 3 different problems…

Right after I was done cooking for lunch earlier today, a call came in from the culinary school Azman goes to. I was hoping the call had nothing to do with Azman getting into trouble, but deep down inside me I somehow felt it was. I had personally met and spoken to a lady lecturer there earlier this month, and although when I spoke to her then, she said Azman so far (at that time) had been doing okay in class, I told her to inform me the moment Azman starts giving any more problems.

Puan, *Azman dah mula buat perangai la.”

Kenapa? Apa pulak dah dibuatnya kali ni?”

Dah pandai ponteng kelas. Minggu ni aje dah banyak kali tak datang. Pagi ni pun takde ni. Ada test pulak tu. Dia dah ada geng kat asrama kaki ponteng sorang lagi, tu yang makin menjadi ni.”

The lecturer then asked if Azman is doing any night time jobs, causing him to wake up late, and hence, missing his morning classes. Not that I know of, but that reminded me of the time when he was still schooling last year, in form 3, when he preferred to work at stalls until late night and ended up too tired to get up early morning the next day.

After the lecturer’s call, I immediately called Azman. He sounded like he just woke up from slumber. It was already 11.30 am. Not wanting to let him know that I knew he wasn’t in class, I asked him where he was. He said he was at the hostel. When I asked why he wasn’t in class, he said he felt a slight headache when he woke up, so he went back to sleep, but he would still be going at noon.

I then asked him if it was true he had skipped quite a number of classes within the week, he denied. He said it was only this morning that he felt unwell. When I told him that his lecturer just called me up to inform me that he had missed quite a few classes this week, all I heard were murmurs from Azman, I couldn’t figure out heads or tails what he was talking about. And when I said, “Ada test kan hari ni?” he sounded so surprised, “Huh? Ye ke?” So yeah, obviously he had been skipping classes.

I told him to go to class immediately. I think I need to have a one to one talk with him, but he always tried to avoid that, giving all sorts of excuses. He had been asking me if I could find him a laptop for him to use in his studies, and I have managed to get hold of a used laptop, free of charge, so hopefully I’d be able to see him when I send him the laptop. No meet, no talk, no laptop.

After calling Azman, a text message came in from Zainab, to tell me that she had spending time at the hospital for the past 4 days. Nope, it wasn’t her who was admitted, but her daughter, more fondly known as Kakak. I figured it must have something to do with the 9 year old girl’s kidney problems. So I thought I might as well visit after sending a sponsored laptop to Eira, Aini’s daughter.

Well, Eira didn’t really have much of a problem. Her only problem was that she needed to use a laptop in school for form 6 but couldn’t afford to buy one. Last week I had lent her my old laptop. Meanwhile I started asking around, and finally managed to get a laptop fully sponsored for Eira. So, although Aini is away at her sister’s house in KL this week, I made sure Eira was home so I could send her the new laptop and get back my old laptop. I promised to visit her at 3 pm and so yes, at 3 pm I was at her house. Eira was alone at home, just got back from school at 2.30 pm, and was watching TV when I got there.

Eira was so excited to have a laptop of her own. She said when she read my text message, she was so happy she felt like jumping! She had already started using my old laptop in school since Monday. She had even sent the laptop to a nearby computer shop for servicing so that the internet would run faster. She paid RM30 for that. I jokingly told her that since she had already paid RM30 for the old laptop, I didn’t mind if she wanted to continue using it and I’d just take the new laptop in return…

I did take the opportunity to have a chat with Eira. I even told her about the problems I’ve been facing with some other kids including Azman. By telling Eira, my hope was so that Eira herself wouldn’t get herself into any sort of trouble. So far she had not been giving much problem to her mother or anyone else.

After leaving Eira happily smiling away with her new laptop, I headed straight to the hospital to visit Zainab & her daughter. It wasn’t necessary to wait for visiting hours since I already had my special pass renewed. It wasn’t 4 o’clock yet when I got to the hospital, and so getting a parking space wasn’t too bad. Wore my special tag and so the guards didn’t stop me when I walked in. Then up the stairs to the paed’s ward on the 6th floor. Good to note that now there’s a sign at the staircase on every floor of the hospital building, telling how many calories was burnt after walking up each floor. :)

The first person I saw the moment I walked into the ward was Adik, Zainab’s younger daughter. She too had been spending time at the hospital, together with her parents, and the patient, her sister. According to Zainab, every time the housemen followed the specialists for their rounds, Adik would tag along, with a small notebook in one hand and a pen in the other, as though she was one of them. And the housemen all would layan her as well. :)

Anyway, I got a surprise when I got to Kakak’s bed. Initially I thought her problem was only kidney related, but what I saw was her left arm in a plaster cast. Apparently she fell and broke her arm while playing with her younger sister recently. So yep, she needed 2 specialists to oversee her case, one related to her broken arm, the other related to her kidney problem.

Zainab had not been going to work ever since Kakak was warded, and that means no pay for her this week. Her husband, Zaki, is still not working, and in fact needs to go to the hospital every day for his supply of methadone.

Both Kakak and Adik, are excited about the coming Family Day. In fact when told that it will be on 1st July, they said, “Alaaaa…. lambat lagi….”

Lambat lagi? That’s less than 1 1/2 months to go! Eeeks! We’d better get all the preparations moving fast!


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