Saya,Jamal Abdul Kadir dan merupakan adik kepada kakak kesayangan saya, Allahyarham Wafa Abdul Kadir. Wafaa adalah panggilan saya kepadanya.
Sebelum saya mula menulis, saya memohon untuk menulis dalam Bahasa Inggeris. Saya bimbang jika saya menulis dalam Bahasa Malaysia, sukar untuk saya luahkan perasaan saya.
Grief is so private, unique and personal. It can be at times overwhelming and at times cathartic. The feeling of loss is indescribable.
My sister, my Wafaa, my Kak Long, passed away of cancer on Saturday 16 March 2019 at just after 1 am.
She was surrounded by her husband, siblings, including myself, her sons and other family members at home when she passed away, kissing her forehead and her hands, and telling her we love her and to remember Allah, till the very end of her last breath.
Whilst she was physically in pain, and mildly helped by morphine, she passed as peacefully as she could have. Nevertheless, it was hard for us all to witness but I was glad we were all there for her as she has always been for all of us.
At times, I have struggled with coming to terms with her life and death, and my grief. My sister was an amazing woman who did a lot, spoke her mind, and was open and honest and a straight shooter. She was driven and had high standards.
Many of her friends try use words and phrases like “she is something else”, “larger than life”, “caring and compassionate, “generous and loving, “inspiring, strong-willed and determined” and the list goes on.
To me, she was the best Kak Long anyone could ever wish for. She was not just my sister, she was my rock and my best friend, someone who I could trust with anything.
The tyranny of distance between us – between Kuala Lumpur and Melbourne – did not dampen our relationship. Technology was our bridge. WhatsApp, FaceTime, and Skype or Zoom.
And now, she’s gone. She’s no longer around to laugh with me, cry with me, encourage me or share family stories with me.
Sometimes grief come in waves like a tsunami, whilst at other times the good memories comfort me and make me smile.
When my WhatsApp pings, for a moment, I think it’s from my Kak Long. When I see something beautiful like a sunset, I want to take a picture and share it with her. I have always shared photos of beautiful things with here wherever I was or travelled to.
Whenever I came back to Kuala Lumpur, I always hung out with her, especially this last couple of years. Friends would message me asking me to go out for “teh tarik” but I would not even entertain going out or leave her at home as she was home-bound.
In the last few years, Wafaa was no stranger to illness, accidents and hospitals, and as always she’d fight back and survived and gone on living life to the fullest as best as she can.
January this year, after celebrating her 53rd birthday, she was taken to the National Cancer Institute, again, where she underwent surgery to attach an epidural to her spine so as to reduce the amount of morphine she took to a more reasonable level.
Dr. Ednin Hamzah, CEO of Hospis Malaysia said my sister has taken 1,000mg of morphine daily – enough to knock out an elephant!
She had extreme gastrointestinal distress and a blockage in her upper abdomen. She had difficulty eating and drinking. Her abdomen was filled with cancer cells.
Whilst initially she had ovarian cancer, Wafaa was diagnosed with peritoneal cancer, which is closely akin to ovarian cancer, stemming from the same type of cells and acting in much the same hideous and aggressive way.
Many would have given up, but not my sister Wafaa, My Kak Long. She wanted to enjoy every minute she could with her family and many, many friends. She managed to do this due to the amazing care by Hospis Malaysia.
Stephanie, you are an angel sent from heaven, you looked after my sister in amazing and most compassionate manner never before seen. She loved you as you listened to her concerns and tended to her needs.
As an actress, TV and film director, and having run KL International Film Festival, Wafaa met many people from all walks of life. During her illness, she rarely turned down visits from family and friends, even when her energy or spirit were lagging or diminished.
Wafaa’s husband, my sisters and brother-in-law were with her, as they had been throughout her illness towards the end of her life. On her last day, before she passed away, close friends and relatives came out of town. Local friends came that afternoon and evening that day. Most, reluctantly left, with heavy hearts and tears.
Sadly, there were no more days. After holding court with family and friends on that Friday, even though her eyes were closed, she began to fade fast.
That afternoon we called her eldest son and asked him to return from Penang as soon as possible. He drove all the way and arrived some hours later with his wife, to be beside his mother’s side.
Seven hours later, at 1.10am Saturday 16 March 2019, Wafaa left us.
I know this grief will ease with time. But there’s no replacing my sister, my rock and my best friend. See you on the other side my darling Kak Long.
Kredit Gambar: Jamal Abdul Kadir
Jamal Abdul Kadir adalah penulis bebas untuk artikel di atas. Pandangan dan pendapat penulis adalah hasil karya asli penulis dan tidak mewakili serta tidak mencerminkan pandangan dan pendapat dari Gempak. Gempak tidak bertanggungjawab atas sebarang kesilapan atau kesalahan kandungan artikel ini.
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