A grace filled Lent

Tell me, which boss consulted everyone about firing you but did not even talk to you about accusations she heard? Well, that was what I get. A Whatsapp to ask me to resign. Not a private one but to a whole group about some baseless accusations.

So began Lent. A period of 40 days in the desert. A boss who put you on public persecution based on what she claimed she heard. Told to you through third parties.

I am much too dignified to embroil myself with emotional woman. So the obstinate me put on my obstinate mode to fight it out. By remaining silent. If there is no God and if there is no Christ, I would have kicked up a fuss. But I remind myself with Psalm 56.

In God, whose word I praise,
in the Lord, whose word I praise—
11 in God I trust and am not afraid.
What can man do to me?

But I chose to remain silent and took up the matter to the highest office. I got no time to debate with someone who cannot even speak the truth. Someone who flung all sorts of accusations.

I told the big boss. I am not resigning because if I do so, it will give the woman the chance to throw even more lies against me. Moreover, times are challenging ahead and I will want to be part of the waves to go against the injustice that enveloped us.

How do you feel when 20 people spent an hour throwing all sorts of accusations against you? In your absence! Then the woman started to get everyone on her side. Dude, I am not even your equal, I am merely a lower rank staff. I am what I am because that’s how I am. IF I am more famous than you, I can’t help it. Even MPs asked, “Lilian’s boss? Who? A woman?”

I could feel so Jesus-y at that moment. Like Jesus doodling on the grounds kinda scene. So, if there is a Lent that I will remember, it is this one. How turning to the Lord is what kept me what I am. Let the other woman rant, plot, gossip, telling more lies and such because I will just tralalala doing nothing.

Of course, the core of Christianity is forgiveness. IF I dont have that in my heart, they would all get my laser tongue. I am a much better debater because I live by principles and I know right from wrong. So, yeah, I kept silent. For over a month.

So, I applied for leave for Good Friday. And I also submit my hospitalisation forms. She refused to sign. Never mind, throw it by the door like those are pieces of rubbish. Never mind, I take it to the higher department. And I asked an innocent question – Why didnt she sign my religious leave? How come she can sign unrecorded leave on the same day I was in hospitalised MC for three of her staff? So how now, brown cow? Is it also my fault that the higher office knows about it?

I am a drama queen. I am a social media queen. I can write things and convince eskimos to buy fridge, ok? I could have abused all that but I kept it quiet. Because I am much more matured than the one who screamed about sacking me, asking everyone else to take sides to say Yes or No.

I am so disgusted when new staff who are clueless were asked to speak against me. You know…like Pontius Pilate looking for people to scream Cruficy Him? And they laughed like a pack of hyenas when a new staff said “I am shocked. I do not know what to say.” Those laughs make me sick to the stomach. What kind of heartless people are you?

So I went through 47 days with that sort of nonsense every day. Do I feel sad? At one point, when a few people messaged me they are worried about me. I did almost break into tears. Not because I fear for my job. My husband can feed me, I don’t need the salary. Everyone knows that, that Lilian work for her belief that she can change people’s perception with her words But I was so touched that many that I didn’t expect contacted me.

To those who are unsure, yes, you have all been lied to. When she said, Dia panggil saya cibai x 3 times….as if I scolded her in person or to others, I did not. It is nothing like how she had lied to all of you. I had kept quiet because I wanted to be sure.

Now, I am sure. There is no such thing. Thats why I challenged her to show proof, lodge a formal complaint where I said it, whom did I say it, how I said. Give me a formal showcause letter. I will deal with that. In truth, I DID NOT speak to her at all nor did I verbally shouted at her or even to another person.

Stations of the Cross had been so meaningful to me. I actually am lucky to know that I can focus on God more. I have more time. Like I told the youths in the camp, praise the Lord for this incident. I learn what tough cookie I am. I learn what Jesus means about turning the left cheek, right cheek. I discover total surrender, inner peace, trusting in the Lord and best of all, know who are your friends and who are the chaffs.

Finally, Lent is over. The time in the desert is over. Christ is Risen. And so will I. Now I have said this in public, I hope all will not be misled like I had killed someone’s grandma. I was being abused by people who abused her power. I took it silently because kicking up a big drama earlier when I was very angry will have repercussion on the whole system. I stayed low because I care about the whole system. Now, I don’t care about any emotional woman. But I will stay faithfully as a servant to the system.

So yeah, finally Lilian speakth. Even a few of my close friends did not know about it.

The mob mentality kills

Am reflecting on the last days of Jesus. Today (Sunday) Jesus entered Jerusalem and was hailed as King. The people cheered and welcomed him by waving palms. However, within a few days, people shouted for Him to be crucify.

I bet those crowd did not really know what they are doing except to follow the mob. If one says so, the rest follows.

I am seeing that a lot online on social media sites.

So in life always use the mind given to us. Think, ponder, see for ourselves and never follow the crowd. Be the brave one to stand out, to stick to our gut feelings and to stay till the end. When Jesus was carrying His cross, only a few were left to follow Him. Only a few continued to hang on, follow through and never leave Him. I prefer to be that few and never with the mob. It is always easier and more popular with the mob but it is meaningless as we do not challenge our own mind.

Adios, 2016

The year is almost coming to an end.

I have a bag of medals that I have earned. Whether it is running, cycling or some other activities.

I have a stash of money that I have somehow did not spend. Though my salary is not much, I am glad that I did not spend much either and have some left.

I have thousands of photos that I had snapped along the way, daily to remind me that I have a privileged life. It may not be luxurious or very special but I have fun living daily. Not a day passed by when I felt too sad or too depressed to take a picture.

Life has been good to me. Nothing to worry health wise. Never went a day short of money.

Minor worries and lousy stuffs did happen but nothing that affected me.

Travel wise, been to Hanoi, up the hills in Sapa and Hokkaido. So again, I am blessed to be able to travel with my family and my adult sons.

My BFF said I narcisstic and never keep any frens for long. I reminded him I had frended him like 6 years, so shut up. But yeah, some ladies are very hard to keep as friends. Women tend to think too much, puak puak (or tribal) too much. So fren-wise, didn’t make much difference to me if I have a host of friends or not. Still, I got two who stand my nonsense, emo and perangai. So yeah, thankful for that too.

Church wise, I didn’t ponteng church too much. I still have the vigour to serve, doing little things. Never like to do big things because I believe Christ is also laidback, cincai and low profile.

Work wise, I am blessed too. Had been given tough situation but I handled them well. I think the hardest task this year was when I was left behind in Komtar while the MACC took away my Chief Minister. I was like What now? What do I say? And glad I have the foresight to find the right words to update for him. It was See you tomorrow or something like that. I knew the whole world is looking at his update so it was very very tough.

And my scariest moment was when I was shoved into the room where there was a closed door meeting. That moment when it really dawned on me that the MACC is serious in taking him away. No time to feel fearful nor tearful but my hands did shake a lot.

So, I can stand tall, look back at 2016 and said it has been good to me. Oh except one silly episode when I went to a park and cried and cried over a decision I made. But that has been solved when someone said sorry.

Oh another episode of cried and cried because partly due to fatigue, partly due to unwinding of scary shits that I did not have time to digest.

So yeah, bye bye 2016. Thank you for being good to me.

And welcome 2017, I am ready to fight come what may. Elections? Court case? Fats? Wateva, I will fight it all. And I will live life to the fullest.

I almost achieved all my 2016 resolution. Except for travelling solo.

The eclipse we allowed in our lives

My Facebook Timeline and my Whatsapp groups (which I have MUTED FOR A YEAR LOL) are filled with the eclipse of the sun this morning.

I was like yawnnnn…I had seen before. Nothing new, let’s move on. I was a little emo by it, actually. Cos I remembered an eclipse many years ago and I remembered a person. I mean, how could I forget that awesome ‘OH LOOK! The dog ate the sun, there is no sun’ moment but instead who was there watching an eclipse with me?

So, anyway, I brushed off that part. I played the song Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler. The stupid song that got me even more emo. No, it is not about past love or whatever nonsense many of you may be thinking of. But it is about past friendship and how some of them stayed with us in the heart but not in the physical realm.

This time around, I see that many people had the eclipse of the sun in photographs. So, I got a song for everything. Then I played Ed Sheeran Photograph. And I think photographs take away all the magic in life.

I mean, if I have the last eclipse sometimes in late 80s or early 90s in selfies, would that person still be special? I probably would have forgotten. Because we tend to push whatever we have taken in photos out of our memories.

Anyway…..the eclipse word jolted a part of me. I was in the blue lift, going to the yellow lift and as usual, I was thrilled to be in the lift alone which enables me to take photos. Saw how cheerful my yellow corporate shirt is against the yellow lift. I hate yellow and I think I have only two.

Wonder why I hate this sunny colour? And in that few moments in the lift, my mind whirred and this thought came to me.

Are we allowing our lives to be eclipsed? I look at myself and I can safely say that Yes, I do but I tried to avoid that. It is kind of sad how many women tend to fade behind everything in their lives. Their shine disappeared. They no longer shine because so many responsibilities shielded the shine.

For example, motherhood. Being a wife. Being wanting to be proper. How each of us women tend to set aside our feelings, our needs, our passions, our wishes for everything else and everyone else.

As I stood there in the lift, I asked myself if I am only a shadow of my real self? Yeah, the lift between 26th floor to 14th floor takes mere seconds but my mind works like lighting. I asked myself, “Lilian, are you merely a shadow of your real self? Have your life been eclipsed?”

And I smiled back at the image and can face it and said, “Nope, I will never allow anything to eclipse me.” This is me and I don’t care what comes in front of me, the shine is mine and I will burn through it all.

Maybe the eclipse of the sun did things to my mind like what full moon does to werewolf. What have I rambled that turned into a Note? Never mind, I am rather free today. It feels good to see my own image in the yellow lift in my yellow shirt and know that it is me, the real me.

A new bragging point

Blog followers from the good old days of my earlier blogging would be familiar with my style of bragging about everything and nothing. I suppose they were addicted to this woman and her daily rants, occasional wisdom and all those nonsense that pop out of my mind daily.

So, yesterday on Mac 6, I ran my first half marathon (HM). All TWENTY ONE KM of it. It was just an insane idea that I signed up one day, sometime in October last year. In fact, I signed up a few more after that eventhough I had not done my first HM.

As usual, when Lilian puts her mind into anything, she will carry it out. And I did. With dignity, lots of endurance and courage. Just imagine at the last few KM my calves where twitching like mad and the legs didnt allow me to run or walk to fast. At every few steps, I had to hang on to the highway rail and stretched.

However, the pain did not deter me and I kept going. All the while cursing and wondering what is the possible worst scenario. You see, I never prepared to get cramps and did not read what I should do. I even smack my leg and said to it, stupid leg, just stop it, will you?

Oh well, during that 3 hours and 30 minutes, I did talk a lot to myself, in my head. I mean, what else can you do beside looking at the tar road, the rails, the lamp posts and etc?

I am not sure what propel me into this crazy world of running lah, zumba la, cycling lah and soon, swimming as well. Maybe it is because I am tired of the mundane life. Maybe I am part man, part woman. Maybe I enjoy fear and pain.

Whatever, I am into it now. With half marathons scheduled even up to November this year, I wont change my life to shopping, taichi and yoga, I suppose. So it will be more cycling, swimming, running and zumba.

Just thinking how lucky I am to have that one person who actually FORCED me into cycling. OK, maybe two of them. The evil one who put the bicycle in front of me, and the other one who kicked my butt to move it, move it.

In the beginning, I was all part of the mob. The Zumba mob who went everywhere together, run Fun Run together and never step out of the boundary. I guess when I was pushed into cycling, where there were no friends, I began to step out of my own.

I recalled when there was a MACC 6KM run, I did not join the Zumba gang but instead ran 6KM around George Town on my own. Then, there was one time when I was doing an 8-KM peace run and I enjoyed cutting thru all the stragglers and want to be ahead of my own time. Some stupid aunty later on bitched behind my back that I kiasu and did not follow the pack but instead overtook everyone. Anti-social wor….

That too I was glad because I would suffocate if I have to be running beside bitchy aunty for the rest of my life. So all these made me take my legs and go further.

Today, I told someone that he has been my greatest motivator. I think one good point about me is I am very generous with my lashing. If I hate you, I will make you know so that you can go play far far and don’t let me see your face. World peace.

But when I appreciate people, I do tell them as well. So yeah, for the rest of this year, I have set my eyes on doing more half marathons. In fact, in this March alone, I have a cycling event on 19 Mac, a triathlon on 27 Mac and another half marathon on 2 April.

My mind is too full of accomplishing all these, I have little space for other things. Including Godly stuffs. But then, like I always assured myself, I make sure I live longer to do Godly works. And like my friend said, Jesus will prefer a fit body at resurrection. Oh well, when I run or do anything extreme, Jesus is my bestie. The night before, the moment before the flag off, the time when I was struggling, Jesus got to run with me because that’s when I would go calling His name.

Like yesterday, at the beginning of the marathon, I did a quick signing of the cross and did my prayers. In the dark. Later on, as I was struggling in the first 2 KM when everyone was chasing the pacers non-stop, I took out a date (kurma) and at that moment, we were passing by a mosque with the azan subuh. LOL, as if on instinct, when you hear such loud azan, so close by, I asked Allah to bless me and my kurma cos I know Nabi Muhammad SAW promoted the kurma (somewhere in the Quran or Hadith or whatever). So yeah, running keeps me close to god, however I see the Divine.

2016 started with a bang

I am pretty insane lately. But I am also a lot happier, a lot less constipated with what used to be normal life.

I started the New Year 2016 doing bizzare things like cycling to work. I had an assignment at the Esplanade and I woke up at 630 am to drive to Karpal Singh Drive and left my car there so that I could bring my bike and cycle a short stretch to town.

Getting into town in the early morning was easy. Getting out in the afternoon took more courage because I need to use regular roads with lots of cars and obstructing, bumbling, curious tourists.

If that’s not insane enough, I cycled to Telok Bahang and back the following Sunday. I didn’t expect I could finish but I did.

Then, the following week, I cycled to Kedah. And took a lorry or two to complete my adventure. It wasn’t that hard to cycle and it was a lot hotter and tougher to hang on a lorry with a box of bananas, a bunch of young men and women for an hour.

Just now, I found out that out of the 1,000 cyclists, there were only 84 female riders. And I am one of the female. Insane.

Then again, the achievement is priceless. Knowing that I have the guts to stand tall amongst those professional cyclists without freaking out is a top of the world feel.

Well, I am a lucky girl. I have some supportive friends who said I can. And I could.

The journey from Autocity to Kampung Terap, Kedah (where I stopped my journey) taught me many things. One of them is to focus on the road and my own safety. From before sunrise when it was dark to the break of dawn to the glorious morning, I was all alone on the road. I learned that I could strive out on my own and survived and not lost my way.

The other thing is how strong my will is. Along the road, when I lost the groups as I was slow. So I had many people asking me if I want to give up and take the lorry. Instead, I told the lorry driver from MPSP I am from Buletin Mutiara and I am going to keep cycling. Knowing where I am from, they stopped tailing me with the lorry.

Then, came the Red Crescent. And then, the police manning the traffic lights and junction. Everybody either asked if I am the last (how do I know lah) or if I want to carry on or take the lorry. It is kinda insulting but no, I did not allow my ego to be dented because I know for a fact that I am wayyyy below those professional riders. But I am still the best of those who did not try.

Barely half a month of January 2016, I had done those three crazy rides. It is really out of my comfort zone but sometimes, it is so refreshing to be helpless, scared, worried because thats when my survival skills kicked in and I pushed harder.

So far, I had signed up for two half marathons. I had never attempted even one but I had paid good money for two. I figure it is a small price to pay for the thrills of trying something I am not sure if I can achieve.

It keeps me focused. It keeps me fearful so that I can seek the guts within me. I think I would be miserable if I keep to the safe zone and live for the sake of living.

Now I have to spend energy to do things, mind focus on doing them and time to plan. I got no time to be angry with some people. I got no time to mull over things that displeased me. Cos when I was on the road, or on the verge of venturing out, Christ is what I seek to calm me.

These body shaming business

So I was reading some news about Carrie Fisher blasting her body shamers.

In case you do not know, body shaming is about people telling you that you are fat, you are ugly, you are not beautiful, you are old etc. And now a pack of very angry folks will bite your neck and tear you to pieces if you so much dare to do this body shaming.

Well, I had been thinking about this for a while. Though I have no daughters, I sometimes come across young girls who have very insecure feelings about their looks.

For one, I grew up with almost all negative inputs than any positive ones. Too thin, too this, too that. Back then, there was no social media, no women magazines and at least, I did not have that ideal image to live up to. Still, those negative inputs must have caused a lot of damages.

Then again, I was quite the tough kid so I had pretty good confidence of myself, or maybe over egoistic to make up for those negative inputs? Whatever…

Now, the scary thing is people are so into anti-body shaming. So they made it like it is so right to be obese. It is not. It is damaging to the health. It is not cool to continue to be obese just to prove that you are confident. Yes, now they have a lot of plus size women to model. But ultimately, we shouldn’t be making overweight and obese a fashion.

As a parent, if my kid laments he is fat or something, I will get him to talk about it. What is he going to do about it? Will he start to eat less? Will he change his eating habits? Shall we increase the physical activities?

I don’t know but I am quite sure that boys had it easier than girls. When I see the girls above 15 years and still continue with unhealthy eating, unhealthy image of themselves (i.e. refused to have their photos taken) and have bad fashion sense, I will secretly hope they will find an adult they can rely on (sadly, mothers arent very good motivators) to help them to change their habits.

It is bad to body shame others. But it is also bad when the person lives in denial because in the long run, the journey to return to healthier lifestyle is too hard to make a U-turn.

So if you are a young girl with a hard time dealing with your baby fats or whatever they call your extra weights, deal with it. Don’t get into unhealthy habits of diets but instead, eat less, eat more vegetables, get sweaty and physical and you will be able to see the difference.

And if you are being told you are old, you are fat, you are ugly, you are weak and useless, all the more to take charge of your life and start moving too.

As for Carrie Fisher, I think she should realise that she is in Hollywood and not Winnie The Pooh.