July 1 and 2, 1988
The phone rang beside me; it was my wife asking me to pick her up because her contraction was getting closer. I put down the phone and rushed to see Mr. Kaw telling him that I had to go. The guys were telling me to take it easy and drive carefully. What flew in my head was how to get to Jln Raja Laut as fast as I could. Somehow I managed to calm myself down and drove carefully to the National Library. When I got there my wife was already waiting. She said the contraction had already eased off. ‘What in the world is going on’, I said to myself, ‘is this what they called a false alarm?’ Alarm indeed. My wife decided to go home first. So, I drove home carefully and kept asking her is everything all right.
When we got home, the false alarm proved to be false alarm indeed as thing quite down and my wife lied down in the middle of the house. We waited the whole night for something interesting to happen. But, everything had to be in the early hour of the day, my wife’s contraction beginning to pace itself. I decided there and then to go ahead to the hospital. Abang Ibrahim, my Bro-in-law, followed.
My wife was safe in the delivery room; we were waiting outside counting minutes and soon hours. Both of us were getting tired I decided to go home to take a bath and pray. I called Eddy, my wife nephew, first and asked him to come over to wait for my wife for a while. When he came we went home, Abang Ibrahim said he was too tired to go again and would like to catch some missed ZZZZZ. I went back to the hospital late in the evening and still nothing happened. Amir, also my wife’s nephew, who came with Eddy was getting restless, how do you think I felt? Soon to be a father, a very proud one you might add, yet the minutes were getting longer. Maghrib came and Eddy decided to go home leaving Amir with me. What else could we do, but sit and wait. The clock was clocking hours in front of us but nothing happened, then suddenly the delivery door swung opened. I saw Sam on the stretcher; the nurse was taking her upstairs. I rushed to her and asked the nurse had she delivered. ‘Haven’t you been told’ said the nurse. Well, what else is knew the father was always the last to know. The baby had been delivered at 10 pm. and it was already 11 pm. What! an hour passed and nobody care to tell me that I am a father. I asked Amir to follow his aunt so that I could go see the baby first. As I walked in all thought went blank, I didn’t know how I really felt. I guess the long wait killed off all the suspense. But, one thing for sure, the minute I stepped in that room I knew I was a father at last.
I picked up Muhammad Ghazi, I decided to name him Ghazi so that he will grow strong and has the mentality of a warrior, so small, a red nose and a lot of hair sleeping peacefully, the nurse showed me the direction to the Kaabah, I Azan and Iqamat my son, kissed him. I didn’t want to put him down I wanted to hugged him endlessly. But, I had to let him go for a while. When I got out Amir was already outside and told me his aunt was at the third floor on the second row on the right. I went up, so my lovely wife so pale after her Jihad to bring one human being out to the world for the first time. How much I love her, you cannot even say the words because it would never be enough. I told her to take a rest, I had to go home and would be coming back tomorrow as early as possible
How could I celebrate this special occasion with Amir? Where else but my old favorite watering hole, Jaleel. Met Pak Anjang there and told him the good news, Jaleel too. I had the best sleep ever in my life that day.