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Teaching Experience

I feel like writing but I don’t feel like editing. So this post will most likely be my raw thoughts i.e all over the place and grammatically wrong.

One of the things I’ve learnt after teaching for around 8 years now (oh wow?!) is that Allah grants people with different talents. Very different strengths and weaknesses. Rezeki orang lain-lain.

Take for example me and my best friend. I am good in maths, I got distinctions over the years, maths is something I am comfortable with, a subject that I dare speak up in class if the teacher is wrong.

But english, nope. That’s my best friend’s territory, that is her A1 subject (and my worst subject ever). Up until today, I must think hard whether to use has, have, had, has been or had been…. it does not come naturally for me.

You get what I mean?

And these differences in strengths and weaknesses is also a result of how we have been brought up.

I sometimes teach Quran. There were times I asked students to memorise the sujud tilawah prayer. I chose for them the shortest one I can find, which is around 6 words. As a madrasah student, I can memorise the prayer perhaps in less than a minute. Why? Because I was brought up in an environment where I need to memorise a lot and of course because I understand arabic.

I can tell you that my student can take up to 20 minutes just to memorise that line. Why? Because she don’t understand arabic and she was not trained to memorise things.

When I am teaching, I always need to know my students’ background, strengths and weaknesses.

If I don’t then I might accidentally blurt out things like ‘why are you so slow???’

Get it? We are all different and we are all trained differently.

I was perhaps trained to study. I literally enjoyed studying. And I am someone that had tuition for literally every subject since kindergarten up till PSLE. Students are usually sent to a weekday madrasah or a weekend madrasah during kindergarten, guess what, I was sent to both.

I rarely played sports. I hate getting my hair wet. I prefer books. And talking to random people I don’t know can freak me out.

Personally I think people don’t realise how much time I spend my life studying and not meeting people that talking to people can really take a toll on me.

Do outgoing people get it? Maybe some would. Or not. Why? Because it is ‘just talking to people’. If I were to use it to these people it will be like ‘it is just maths, why can’t you do completing the square? Really.’

My body was not trained to endure much physical training. Maybe you can let me sit for a 3-hours lecture and maybe I am still concentrating. But a half hour training? Maybe not. But maybe someone else can. But in the future, with the right training, can I endure it? InsyaAllah yes. But it might take time right?

Once I understand this, I have stopped expecting people to get the grades I have achieved. I began to understand how something that I enjoyed so much like maths can be torturous for some.

What teachers need to do is to acknowledge these strengths and weaknesses: Okay I know you are not good at this, but slowly okay, we can do this. And for some, it will take time, believe me it will.

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Numb

I never thought of it this way, well until one fine day.

I am not judging anyone of you people out there, but I always see is as an aib or a flaw if I was caught continuously watching something. Like how messed up am I that I continuously watch shows or videos. How low can my standard of living be. No, you were not made for this. How could you stoop so low watching things that could never benefit you and worst, harm your afterlife.

But interestingly enough, I am simply numbing myself aren’t I?

‘No, don’t think of that office job. No, no more bursting your lips. Nah, no more Macs during lunch. Nope, no more nasty toilets. Nope.’

And for some reason, unless you mix around with the right people, nobody is going to highlight that to you. Nobody is going to ‘Hey, you are kind of getting too deep in this mess.’

Except for some, or I mean, well….one.

‘You are watching Finding Dory?’……and ‘Your motive? (of sending me your funny pictures)’

Not many people will remind you your purpose in life. What is your intention in doing that? Will this benefit you or anyone? You are not created to waste time, please wake up, you are getting good at that (wasting time).

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Not what it seems

It is usually the case that when God take away something from you, He will give you in other ways. 

To most, a holiday is something you plan and usually something you look forward to. But it could be, for some, torturous. 

Maybe you got jealous over some lifestyle, not knowing that was part and parcel of them healing.

May the following excerpts shed some light on you: 

(https://www.mentalhelp.net/blogs/ocd-and-the-holiday-season/)

So what should OCD sufferers do when faced with all these holiday events fraught with doubt and uncertainty?

The answer is clear. They should push through their anxiety and embrace the doubt and uncertainty that is holding them hostage. Yes, there is uncertainty that comes with traveling or vacationing or entertaining. Indeed, there is uncertainty in every aspect of our lives, and we all need to learn to accept, not fear, it.

I know it’s not easy. My son Dan suffered from OCD so severe he could not even eat. He was barely functioning. I have seen firsthand how OCD can destroy lives. But I have also seen how it can be overcome. I have written before about Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) Therapy, the frontline treatment for OCD, and in a nutshell, this therapy is about facing one’s fears as well as accepting the uncertainty of life. Giving in to what OCD demands only fuels it; standing up to OCD takes away its power. And while ERP therapy is difficult, it’s in no way as hard as living a life dictated by the disorder. Therapists who are properly trained in ERP therapy can help those who are suffering from OCD regain their lives.

If you have obsessive-compulsive disorder, I propose that you give yourself a gift this holiday season and make the commitment to stand up to your OCD. Reclaim your life. You deserve to enjoy the holidays, and every day, with your family and friends instead of being controlled by obsessions and compulsions. It will not only be a gift to yourself, but just might possibly be the best gift you could ever give to those who care about you.”

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Psychic

I think I have been watching The Mentalist a lot these days. I think it is a fun show to watch, very intriguing I must say – how Patrick Jane can solve the case out of the blue.

I think it is, perhaps, cool to become a psychic. But then again, would you want to be one?

The truth hurts, not all the time. But it still hurts sometimes.

I asked one of my almost psychic friend to list down the names of the people I love. She gave a name of someone that I have not talked to nor have I even talked about for a very long time(long as in years), but I still loved her anyway.

And although she accompanied her reply with a capital HAHAHAH when I asked her how she knew, her answer kind of hurt.

Because I think you love her more than me

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Tired

Have anyone ever had those moments where you kept on thinking and thinking till thinking actually hurts? Almost like an overworked machine and you somehow tried to stop it but you can’t? But at least, it is better now. It used to be vivid voices inside my head. And in those days, there is such a thing as a voice call. So when the voices got louder, I’ll call her till I fall asleep. But things aren’t so simple now. Apparently all of us don’t hear each other’s voices over a phone call. We whatsapp now, most of the times, void of feelings. We hide our true feelings behind emojis. Everything is complicated now. It used to be just school. Now there is work, other relationships and other stuffs. Even people are not okay. Now everyone is tired. Isn’t that what everybody says?