9 Pure Souls and I

I have never written about them on the Blog so I feel like I need to express about them here. Last November, I was chosen to become a teacher for children aged 3-4 years old. I actually wanted to teach 2 years olds but my boss was like they are just going to bully me so she placed me in nursery 4. I was introduced to my first kid and his nickname is E. Now E is really adorable even when he cries and frowns like no joke. Allaahumma Baarik lahu. Most of my kids were Chinese with a minority of Malay. It took E two weeks to accept me in play. I still remember when he called me to play with him and that was one of my greatest moments because I finally was starting to make a place in his heart. One of the kids left early so it came down to 9 children. There were a handful. My job was to be a teacher and not a mother so I was very clear that I would never want to replace their mother. Therefore we would always talk about what their Daddy likes and what their Mommy likes. So I had AVR, Ran, Ayl, Way, Cell, Zaa, E, Hay and ET. I didn’t know you could love people equally but I love all of them differently because they have different characteristics and personalities. It is truly awe-inspiring to see them succeed at academics and non-academics areas at such a young age.

My last day of teaching AVR’s Mom said “Teacher Sumaiya, she always talks about you.” I stood like a statue because I was literally in tears and I did not want to cry in front of the children or anyone in the school. When I went inside, I was wiping tears and I realised children don’t know what is goodbye because 3-4 years olds are egocentric. Then on 16th March 2018 was my official last day when we went on a field trip and I was making sure they had their breakfast without spilling juice or food on their clothes because they didn’t bring additional clothes. That was one of my biggest concerns and one of the kids I told her “Come on lets go.” Then I noticed she opened her shoes while she sat in the canteen. So I had to make her wear the shoes and it clicked in my mind this is why my parents hate to travel with us. For the first time in my life, I felt the motherly duties because we were outside the school and it was a totally mind boggling experience. I wasn’t too sure if I want to be a mother so soon because my life goal until that day was to become a mother asap. It is alot of hassle to be travelling with kids and imagine if they are toddlers. Plus the toilets were not built child size so were the tables and chairs in the canteen and it really bothered me because the kids were having a hard time. I had to help them sit on the toilet seat and all the teachers did the same with the other kids. Ayl’s little sister came and she is amazing and adorable. Allaahumma baarik feeha. I just couldn’t get over the Mei Mei (little sister in Chinese).  Another reason my parents hate to travel with us is because we are big kids, we have alot of opinions and dislikes. Not really my parents would either travel with us or not at all. As a child our favourite spot to travel was Jeddah and obviously Makkah and Madinah are different because we are religiously connected to them. It reminded me of my childhood and I came to appreciate my parents alot more. I mean the amount of sacrifices they did for us, it is truly heartbreaking.

However, the bus was also not made for children, I wish I could turn everything into child size. Sometimes I had to stand up to make sure the children are sitting properly and are comfortable. The best thing is I didn’t fall on anyone in a moving bus: that would be the end of my career and worse it would be caught on camera.

On the other hand, I really enjoyed it Alhamdulillah. It was the best few months of my life and I spent with so many beautiful children. Basically, I didn’t eat them because obviously they are not edible and it is not professional to be kissing the kids all the time. We always hugged and we played hide and seek in the library. Yes, learning through play. I learned to spend my last day and my farewell day with them by not letting my emotions come in the way which was a huge lesson for me. You know sometimes we cannot enjoy the last moments with people or in a place because we are overcome my grief that we will be leaving forever, I didn’t let it affect me. I treated 16th March as any other day but I made sure I had lots of fun with them and let them know I am leaving for good. I told each one of them “I love you.” I expressed my love without sobbing and wrote good qualities about them.

So, here are some pictures to mark my last day with them. I hope to remember them forever because they were my first class who I taught in my life.

Thank you Teacher Den for the great experience and what you have taught me. Before I didn't want to teach English Language but you told me, it is one of my strengths. You have corrected me from the first week and you have been straight forward. I have never wanted to be a principal because of the ones I have seen but you have totally changed the definition of principal. You are the best principal I have ever met and you have formed a relationship with every child in your school and you even remember the number plates of all the students cars as well as your teacher. Miss J and I never thought we would be this fortunate and your passion towards teaching young learners is awe-inspiring. I have learned how to teach Montessori in creative ways from you and how to manipulate the lessons to suit the needs of children in the class. I have wanted to work in a diverse environment and you have provided just that. I have met the loves of my life here. You have also taught me how to be involved yet have an awareness of my surrounding. I am going to miss the children so much and the teachers. May Allaah bless them Aameen. The children are so precious. What a better way to end this journey than a field trip to a library. Hope you continue what you are doing and enjoy like you do because many people own schools but few people make a positive difference in the child's early years. I never wanted to be a teacher but after working with you I can say I am one. There is a long way to go for me in sha Allaah. #earlyyears #school #earlychildhoodeducation

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2017: It’s a Wrap

This year has been challenging to say the least. I have not only had experience to work with children but also learned a lot about myself throughout the process. I have learnt to care for my needs and also to tackle a good quality in me which could become bad if not used in the correct manner. My life has been turned upside down not quite so much yet did I face it all with courage? Continue reading

Scattered

We often seem to think we have pulled everything together yet one can only try to make an effort. I have been chosen for this role for 2017 and I thought it was a small role. There was no work to be done yet with time I realised the importance of the job and how seriously I have been taking. Few weeks back when we were deciding who is going to replace our positions  and who will take over. I stepped down mentally and thought to myself how much effort I have put in. I thought perhaps I took it way too seriously. Perhaps I should have been easy on myself. The job didn’t even require me to go an extra mile yet I did. I thought people won’t even notice my work so then we were given recognition for our roles.  I thought 2018 will be a slow and steady year and I will probably not socialise that much.Hence, I stopped Continue reading

Fear of Moving On, Uncertainty & Love

I have overstated my abilities so now I have due work and I just started about two hours ago and I am already having neck pain from sitting down and typing. I shouldn’t have delayed my work nor underestimated the designing work. I am not sure if I will be able to meet the deadline because there is too much to be done and I have other stuff to do. Worst part my lecturer said she expects a lot from my group. I am seriously Taboleh Pakau now. Tomorrow is a big day then I have got an event on Wednesday. That reminds me I have to wake up today at 5 am.

I had a lot of good stuff to say today but I have been hit by stress now. Tomorrow I  will sit with my group mate for 3 hours if she isn’t late to finish their part. I wish everyone knew me as this unreliable and lazy person then they wouldn’t depend on me to get their work done. I wish I was careless and absent minded.

We got our last Academic calendar before we part ways. Everything about 2018 calendar is nostalgic. I will write about it soon and my current favourite people. Thinking about next year always makes me melancholic and crave for all the past moments but we have another year to make memories; our last moments together. I always liked leaving places and things but this upcoming year is awfully depressing due to the fact that I will never get to meet these people after we bid farewell unless I or they make an effort to visit each other. The travelling is expensive Oh this is pure sadness. These people are the ones with whom I share my educational philosophies and goals. We have a countdown though 365 days until I leave this place. I am so familiar with the roads and transportation here. I even know my way around the fifth largest mall in Asia.

New place means starting all over again and forming new relationships. It is really sad. I hate to move on or to even think that I have to make an effort to know the new people in my life. My heart will be broken again and again before I find the right people. I will have to learn about the new environment and locality and which train to take and the cheapest and the less time consuming route to my house from malls, supermarkets, field visits, clinics and restaurants.

Sorry I wanted to be positive but how can I when my heart is attached to these people? Why do I have to leave and why do they have to leave? For the better.

The heart is grieving and the eyes are sad but we shall be hopeful that distance doesn’t become a wall between our souls. I shall pray that I don’t forget my effort in building such caring and helpful relationships and I shall pray that when I am hurt I can remember there were people in my life who were extremely kind to me once. Alhamdulillah for everything.