Ring on my finger

It’s 7.38 am. Owing to the winter times, its still pitch black outside and that hint of
coldness surrounds the room.

Baby – who is now named as Zayan Ali (nama passport nanti: Zayan Mumtathil Ali) – has just had his feed. He is currently feeding at 2-3 hourly, I’m demand feeding him, when he cries, I give him the goods. But he’s slowly sorting out his own routine Alhamdulillah.

Anyway, back to the original topic I wanted to talk about. Two of my best friends have just gotten engaged. Aside from feeling ‘Finally!’, I am beyond happy for them. I hope their engagement wont be too long for there lay a better and more awesome adventure ahead of them. Plus when you’re wifey, your good deeds to your guy counts as ibadah, MAJOR bonus!

Anyway, I think back to my engagement/courting period and see if I can give them any words of wisdom. Firstly, our engagement/courting period was relatively short – for british & bruneian standards (perhaps not so unusual for british asians tho). We were together for 10 months before lafaz nikah diucapkan. And our ‘engagement’ time lasted for four (sweet yes but stressful too) months

I say engagement loosely as we didnt have a proper engagement ceremony. But his parents flew the miles that fateful June and met up with mine. On the first day they met, my family and his parents sat down and after dinner and with tea, chose the date. I remember feeling shocked – I just couldnt believe it was that easy. I also remember both of us trying to hide the huge grin on our face. They came, they met, chose a date and it’s sorted: we’re getting married.

Now if that’s not being engaged, I wont know what is. Do I regret not having a ceremony? Not really. It wasnt necessary, both families are happy and I get to cut cost (hehe!).

Anyway, we had four months to organize a wedding. And for bru standards, that ain’t long! We were only in Brunei for less than a week and spent a few days in KL with my parents. The result: stressed out trying to sort the kad jemputan, pelamin, baju kahwin, get started with barang hantaran (like kain jongsarat), hadiah kawin, photographers. Basically all the things that needed our presence and face to face input. Oh there were tears and there were tension. Imagine all that stress over organizing a wedding packed into one week and a half.*shudders*traumatized*

Anyway I digress. My dear bride to be friends, just remember:

1. Ask for help and advice. Turn to those who just got married – theyll know where best to buy things or get good deals.

2. Be organized. It was probably the
most organized Ive ever been. I had a notebook that jotted lists of things to do and buy, sketches of my dream baju and pelamin, prices of EVERYTHING we spent our money on, friends guest list. I stapled receipts and kain samples on the pages.

It was my brains to withold all information to do with the wedding. (In a dramatic moment though, I left the book on top of the car before getting in one day and realised it was missing when we were on road in Kiulap! Atu ya, panic going out and retrieving the book before it gets blown away or worse, another car comes!! bimbooooooo moment)

where was I? oh yes….The last three advice is the most important so listen carefully and dont say I never told you.

3. Listen to your parents and try to compromise. One wise dr said to me (after seeing me all stressed out, wanting to rebel) – listen to my mom’s heart. I know what they want and it’s best to just listen. I don’t know jack, he said. He too rebelled in his days for what he think is right – but now as he got older, he realised he didn’t know jack. Setting on the right foot to your marriage, with happiness and parental blessing, is the bigger picture.

And so compromise or let go, be happy or at least redha.

::::::::: My utmost concern was having malam bebadak. I didnt feel it was necessary
and not part of our religion (plus the whole red kain and dragon on head freaks me out just a lil bit). But I knew my parents wanted it. So in the end, I agreed with the only condition being that the males will membadaki my husband to be and the females membadaki me. And actually, I was glad we did it. It was very traditional, macam
malay princess ada jua rasanya hehe. We had a lot of fun it turned out. I loved the dress Mama chose for me and my parents were happy. Yay! :::::::

4. At the end of the day, once lafaz
nikah diucapkan, nothing else matters. That particular flower arrangement, the family dress colour codes, whatever it is that HAD to be just right – it wont matter anymore. Cos you are now husband and wife and you just wanna party with the rest of your kampung now 🙂

So dont get too hung up on the small things. Be clear of what is really important to you (for me, my dresses and photographers were the ones I invested the most in) and the rest – dont stress too much on it!

5. And lastly, from the words of my brother’s mother in law on their besuruh day, ‘You are now just an engaged couple. You’re not yet married, remember that.’

And so my girls and all the bride to be out there, have fun pondering over wedding mags and websites and blogs. All the different options and colours and themes – ahh, what fun just to look and dream!

Love me

ps. From watching Four Weddings and ahem experience, spending insane amount of money does not necessarily equal to fun and happiness. And remember: the wedding business makes us all suckers to part our money to them! You have been warned.

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