A Stranger That Inspires

I think it’s a bit weird for me to be talking about someone that I never knew. In fact, I never knew this person at all when she was still alive. Just right after she left this world, then only I got to know about her existence. A stranger that I couldn’t identify any mutual acquaintance between us, not even one. Nonetheless, the story of her life has gripped my heart in a very mesmerizing way.


Photo Source : Instagram @nikidznidalila


The Late Nik Idzni Dalila Binti Nik Mahmud – a grown girl, 25-year-old when she passed on, a student then a doctor, a wife, a cancer-fighter.

The day that she passed away on 27th December 2016, the social media has gone viral by the news. I was first not interested with it but the level of “virality” was so high that everyone was sharing the posts with crying emoji and I kept seeing the husband and wife’s pictures with screenshotted captions crossing through my timeline. Too much, I thought…‘What’s the hype?’ So I clicked on.

From one article to another, one Instagram post to the next, scrolling and scrolling, I then became very perplexed! It’s so like a made-up story. This girl was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney cancer, still wanted to continue study, stayed far away from home, found love to a very devoted guy, got married though she’s in that condition, finished studies, became a doctor, health got worse, resigned, came back home, passed away on the very first wedding anniversary! Are these all true?? I didn’t believe it’s a real story, did you?

I stalked all the pictures and was also directed to her blog. Days spent reading almost everything, it was first really heart-breaking but as I read and read, I found that this girl was truly a living proof of miracle! Her life, her illness, her very strong self, put together made one of a kind character that taught me so much real life lessons and impacted me in a way that left me thinking and reflecting about so many things in my life. I was like given answers I’ve been puzzling for so long. And what made me felt more touched was because all these things came through someone who’s no longer around. One whom I don’t and won’t ever get the chance to know in person. A stranger, but truly a godsend that had inspired me through her words she left visible.

I believe there were many other people in kinda similar situations like her but maybe she’s the one that Allah chose to flick my heart and send His messages to me. I learnt from her that being sick is truly a blessing from Allah, it’s not an unfortunate event, not a bad luck. That’s how we always perceived bad things – not just sickness but any difficulties. The way she treated this test from Allah was really extraordinary. She recognized every blessing she gained despite having the cancer and chose to be grateful for everything. When I felt like how lucky she was to be herself, I asked myself; ‘She’s sick, she got c.a.n.c.e.r, she died at only 25… How could I say she’s lucky for all that?’ From there I understand the true meaning of “blessing” in a way that I never deeply thought of.

She inspired me to blog. You know I’d been contemplating to blog for so long. I had long lists of things discouraging me from taking the plunge but most of all was because I feared that I’d regret of what I write myself. I was afraid that in future I realize what I’ve written was all crap. I was scared of being fooled by my own words. But in her blog profile she said this;

A single statement above was like resolving all my contemplations. She’s so full of courage to say this, I was so moved. I can read hundreds of blogs and get inspired, I can read fancy popular blogs and feel enthusiastic to do the same but nothing, nothing really beats my doubt to actually get started. 5 days after her passing, the New Year slipped in and I delayed no more. That’s how it started with many more blogging inspirations I obtained implicitly from her. Truly, she’s the reason for this.

In January this year, I went for Umrah and it was about a month after I knew about this wonderful soul. On my last round; I performed the Badal Umrah for her. It was just spontaneous when I was about to pronounce my niat, I thought of her in my mind so I dedicated the Umrah for her. After I completed the Badal Umrah, I was drawn with a sense of guilt in me. I doubted my action about doing it for her, who was a total stranger. I knew it was already my fourth round of Umrah, all our late relatives have been covered for Badal (by my mom and brother as well) but I still felt that I should’ve prioritized at least someone that I knew in person, not an unknown at all to me. But it’s all done, I wondered why must I still feel that way? I returned home with this unsettled feeling.

Back home, I told my husband about this ‘conflict’ within me. I thought I just wanted to express my feelings but finally my husband came out with something so relieving. He said; “It’s okay, you don’t have to feel this way. Maybe that was a blessing from Allah to her, through you. Maybe when the time you want to niat that, Allah made you think of no one else but her, though she’s just a stranger to you. It’s Allah’s will specially for her; I guess it’s nothing to be felt guilty of?”

I felt like a heavy load in my heart was vanished at all. That was really, really, really calming. Because true! I did not plan that? Her name instantly crossed my mind at that very moment. Indeed it’s Allah’s will, I feel so overwhelmed to be clarified this way. Because if really that’s how Allah blessed her for the strong faith she kept through her tough times in the dunya, isn’t it an ultimate success? Think that, if everything that we have to go through in life is to promise Allah’s blessings for us in the hereafter, what else matters? T_T

I just hope that my Umrah obligations were all valid and accepted and from up there, she would gain the rewards too. May Allah forgive her sins, grant her Jannah and reunite her with all her loved ones one day. This world is indeed temporary; we all will be there too.

It’s been exactly a year since the day she returned to the Creator, and it’s been a year too I’m living life through her wisdoms. If I were to be asked; who is one person that has changed my life in 2017? I’d say it’s definitely her. On earth, we’re two total strangers that had never met eyes, never crossed paths. But in two different worlds, I feel so related to her and this connection I believe comes from Allah as spiritual guidance for me to cruise this life more wisely. Thank you Stranger, for all the things you had done.

Rest in peace, Allahyarhamah Nik Idzni Dalila Binti Nik Mahmud (1991-2016)


Photo Source : Instagram @nikidznidalila


Till the next post,


Forever My Girl Crush

In life of an every girl, there must be a moment she’s struck by a feeling of Girl Crush! A feeling of liking another girl. Either she’s an outstanding senior in school, a popular young singer, an acquaintance or can even be, the girl-next-desk? It’s clearly non-sexual, a positive jealousy I might say or more likely, an intense feeling of admiration just because she’s awesome!

I had a girl crush too. That happened when I was only in standard 5 and she was……the magnificent, the one and only….. ERRA FAZIRA!!! A popular actress, singer and also the Malaysian Miss World 1992. Well that’s enough to tell that she’s so beautiful that’s why I liked her!

erra estee lauder

Source : The Star

It started out when I was watching her film titled “Gemilang” in 1997. From there I became her fanatic fan until today and I just realized that it has been a remarkable span of 20 damn years! For 20 years I’ve been sticking to her, following her journey, her ups and downs in life especially in her marriages and with those, all I can say is she has made and is still making a noteworthy biography I adore so much. She’s not just beautiful. She’s a devoted daughter, an independent lady and a very mature person – these three main qualities that attracted me so much into admiring her.

Well, I may be not the kind of fans who’d run to her concerts or events just for the purpose to greet and have a picture with her. I’m not accustomed to that. My old-school mom disregarded this entertainment obsession so I had no access to go see artists. But, every time she’s out on the screen, I’d be on the front line watching without blinking and my mom would be shaking her head. She’s so gorgeous!

I still remember when I was in school, there was a campaign to encourage students to make it a habit to read newspapers daily. So everyday every classroom was supplied with a set of newspapers and that was the time Erra got married to Yusry KRU. For days the media was flooded with her wedding pictures and for that every single day too, I’d be the first one to grab the papers before anyone else. I’d quickly flip the entertainment section and keep the pages away. Hahaha! I didn’t want it to crumple they’re for my collections, “don’t touch”. The cynical boys in class were teasing me they said; I gotta pay for the class’ papers fees. Haha, hello! It’s freee.

After she married Yusry – the famous, the richest boy band in Malaysia – she still worked hard for her career. She got the choice to take-it-easy and rely everything on Yusry but no, she continued working and she said; this is herself, she was born to be independent and that she has her mom she’s taking care of, so she would hold the responsibility on her own. With that, my 18-year-old self was so impressed. I was about to live a semi-freedom life, from there I knew that being a woman, we have to be independent. In certain things in life, we really have to be assured of ourselves and know why we do what we gotta do. My Erra taught me this. Hiks.

Most people who’re close enough to me knew about my thing towards Erra. When she and Yusry got divorced, the news was out on TV and I was alone at home. I was shocked and so devastated but at the same time, my phone was beeping with so many incoming messages from my friends updating and asking me about the divorce! ‘What?’ ‘Why?’ ‘Are you OK?’ ‘Any comment?’ Hahaha… That was so funny.

Oh ya, for your info, we have one similarity. And that is….we’re both MOM! Haha.. Yes, yes… I copied her, exactly! When she had Aleesya and I knew that she was called by Mom, I was again fascinated. She’s so unique okay. So when I got preggy I decided for that too, hehe. It’s uncommon in Malay community and sounds weird when I first announced it to people that my kids will be calling me Mom but later, it’s just natural. I didn’t tell people that I chose it because of Erra but knowing me well, my friends finally found it out! Haha. Whatever, this one thing, we matched!

Everyone’s life is not perfect, and so her. She was engaged once, broke up. Married twice, divorced both. Netizens have all the unproven reasons to criticize her status but she kept it cool. She responded things in a mature way and moved on life. And just recently, her second ex-husband Engku Emran remarried and she uploaded a picture of her with Aleesya and Laudya Cynthia Bella, and posted a very pleasing wish for the couple that touched many hearts including mine, of course. She’s just lovely in her own way, how can I not love her? And the way Emran treated her as the mother of Aleesya after the divorce somehow tells how respectful she is in the eyes of someone who had lived a significant life with her.

erra pepatung

Source : Pepatung

Being a girl who crazed over celebrities’ stories on the magazines was typically non-sense. But after 20 years of time travelling looking up to somebody, this has created one of the colors of my life. It’s not just a plain obsession; I knew I’ve learnt a thing or two. From someone who was scarred by life’s tribulations, the scars made her nothing but only more beautiful and till now she’s standing even stronger in a graceful way. Erra Fazira, you’re one of a kind!! I love you and may Allah bless you always. I’ve never met her, but she’s close to my heart.

These are pieces of stories about my Girl Crush that I grew up with ever since I was 11 years old. Nana Nerra, did you have a Girl Crush?

Till the next post,

A Ride Full of Messages


Since a year ago I guess I can say I am a regular customer of the increasingly popular public transport – GrabCar, or UBER sometimes. Not a routine but quite frequently I’d rather ‘grab’ than drive just because I’m lazy. Do you usually chat with the driver? I usually only take short trips around 10 to 15 minutes to arrive so normally it doesn’t really spare time to chat. Being in cars without having to concentrate on the road is the time we should steal to do our little things or just – scroll the phone, right? But today’s experience was completely different.

Today I took the longest trip in my record – a 50-minute ride involving highways so I had set to read a book all the way to kill the time. But then, after 10 minutes of muteness I felt really awkward because it was so quiet, the radio was low volume and the driver seemed bored. It’s still a long way to arrival so I thought let’s say a word just to break the silence if it’s cold, I can continue with my reading. Little did I know, from just a typical question “Hey do you do UBER as well or just totally Grab?” it turned into a conversation about life!

It went on and on to talking about doing it full or part-time, to his current other job, to his job prior to this, to why he’s doing this. This guy was really a talking personality he talked talked talked so openly. Haha. But of course because I also kept asking from one question to another just to relate anyway. He told about a major accident he involved years ago and that now he’s wearing an artificial backbone! It was so incredible that he broke his spine and not paralysed? MashaAllah.

After the accident, a series of drama happened in his life from having to quit from a governmental job, on how unfair the employer treated his situation, the tough recovery process, the devastation of not able to do his favourite thing before – cycling, he was an active cyclist by the way. After he somewhat recovered and found himself jobless, he went to Perth, Australia to find luck. With his brother and cousin, first they got cheated of 15 thousand dollars, which was another drama, but still managed to get there. The trials of getting a job there was another hardship so his brother and cousin couldn’t survive, because they have families, so they went home leaving him alone. It was really a rough journey he even told that sometimes he cried in shower. Erp, my God. An astonishment not because of the crying-in-shower thing but for telling a stranger so!

He managed to secure a job, and worked and lived a life for I’m not sure how long but earlier this year he returned to Malaysia to urgently settle his insurance case pertaining to the accident. It involved lawyers to fight for his rights but in the end, for what he’s gone through since then it only compensated an undeserved amount of money for him. How awful.

So there he was. Starting over in Malaysia with this GrabCar service almost full-time and also another job. With GrabCar was another challenge as well but I’d rather not continue here or it’s gonna be a novel, haha.

The ride was one of a kind. It left me reflective with a deep thought that how life can be so tragic for some people. Everyone in this world is tested, we all are. But for certain people we somehow would say they’re the chosen ones. Some tests happened once and they changed the person’s life completely after that. But some tests happened in a way to generate problems after problems like a never-ending story. Either way, that’s what life is! This life is a test for the believers and from time to time it will be difficult. And for as long as we live we in fact don’t know when actually the turning point of our life is. We could think we have been tested enough and that made us stronger but do we actually know Allah’s plans on us? Who might not know for one day people will look at us and say we’re ‘the chosen ones’? Honestly it’s scary to think of.

It was coincidence that we, husband and I, came across this ayah just two mornings ago so when I had this conversation in Grab, it instantly reminded me to what we just tadabbur. Allah mentioned in ayah 214 of Surah Al-Baqarah; “Or do ye think that ye shall enter Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you? They were afflicted with severe poverty and ailments and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those of faith who were with him cried: “When (will come) the help of Allah?” Yes! Verily, the Help of Allah is near!” – Telling us how difficult the trials of the believers (may Allah bless them) were for Allah to let them into paradise so what about us? Wanting such an easy life with a trial or two, getting over and expecting paradise? Shame now. We actually just forgot what we were here for.


To the driver, I may be just another passenger that came in and out of his car like the others. But to me, the ride was full of messages that still left me thinking about life.

Till the next post,