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Memoir With Lil Maria #04 – It Was All Our Fault We Chose The Wrong Course!

Featured Photo By: Sidney Sims via Unsplash

Maria & I were damn hurt. 

“Let’s forget about the fasting. It’s pointless. It’s useless. We tried our best. We lived our best till to date.” I said

We gave up. We don’t care anymore about how the World will judge us. We don’t care about the religious phrases, lingo, and judgment of religious people too. 

“It was your fault! You chose the wrong course! If you had chosen SIM University like your sister, you would have finished your bachelor’s degree faster! But you chose the course in religion. You do not have the foundation, that was why it took you long. It was your fault for choosing to study the religion!” – mom.

In 2020, she rubbed my dad too.

“Didn’t you regret allowing her to go to Yemen and stay there for so long? Look at her. What could she work as? What much could she earn today? If she had taken the normal courses like her siblings, she would have finished the university by now. Look at her siblings. Bachelor degree. Manager. 4k salary. She?…” – mom.

Let’s get back to 2022. Now.

“It was your fault! …” – mom.

My father was lying in the High Dependency Unit that day. She had never got anything better to do except rub everyone against each other and picks all the bad things about anyone. Welcome, world. That’s my mom. And I don’t care about anyone telling me whether it is a sin or wrong thing to be complaining about mothers. I lived in a very toxic and narcissistic environment. 

That morning she nagged about my younger brother. 

We fell apart for many years already. He could not see what good others did for him because he held to the principles that whatever you rendered goodness to him, you kinda owe him a life. So do not remind him of it. Perhaps the born 90s are people who have these personality traits. Once they claimed the top ladder or power, they started to be aloof. He has not been talking to my mom or dad for 3 years solid! 

That night I broke the news that dad had 4 tumors in his brain. 

Usual shenanigans. Mom cried. Wept pathetically. She forgot how she treated her husband. During the first 3 weeks of Ramadhan, I kept hearing her nagging and screaming at him. Tired of the household chores, but not tired of going in and out of the house more than once or twice. Was tired of the household chores being an excuse? Yes.

She screamed at him.

“Wear your pants in the toilet. Take off your pants in the toilet. Do not take it off outside, your urine on your pants will touch the floor mat and it became najis dirt on the floor. I have to keep washing your pants and rugs many times!…”

My dad kept washing the pants himself each time he peed without control. He was having difficulties walking. He seemed disoriented. His motion was slow. He could not swallow food properly. His mind seemed elsewhere. Even when I talked to him, he seemed to be elsewhere. He seemed not him at all.

Suddenly, she screamed again at my dad.

“Do not wash your pants! Do not wash it! Enough! Every day we use a lot of water and the bill goes rocketing high.” 

I felt she was making him so confused. Since she complained of being tired of doing household chores, he washed his own clothes. He remained silent because of the nerves being affected by the tumor in his brain. We did not know that yet. But he was not talking much. 

He had difficulties raising up his legs to wear the pants. He wore it in the toilet when the floor was wet. Would he not fall down? He wore it or took it off outside, but my mom screamed at him. He wore inside the toilet and the pants got wet due to the floor. My mom screamed at him too. 

“Is that your urine? Are your pants wet with urine? Did your urine again? 

“Dad, do you need the religious teacher to come again?” I asked.

He shooked his hands. He did not want.

“Dad, would you like to go to the hospital clinic? Not the hospital, but clinic at the hospital.” I asked

He shooked his hands again. Money. He did not want to use my mom’s money. Whenever she paid for something, she made a mountain out of a molehill. She bragged about it. She would not cook. She only cared for her own food for dinner. She bought my dad’s breakfast and sometimes that became his lunch. There was no dinner for him. Often. 

I had enough of it. My sister was turned off by her. They fell apart too because she tried to entice me into looking at her bank book shared with my sister’s name. The amount was decreasing as my sis withdrew multiple times. 

So, my mom fell apart with her son and her 1st daughter. She had always been provoking and gaslighting me, targeting me ever since I chose to study Islam. When I wanted to be a Christian at 15, the whole fam was against it. So what was wrong with me studying Islam?

“It is your fault! You have no foundation. If you took SIM University like your sister you would have finished.” she said

My mom. She had never been admitting her mistakes. She would never. She would twist and turn her words and change her stories all the time. She would use anyone’s name too. 

Maria and I had been avoiding her. We knew there was nothing good to be seated in her presence. She would always start a conversation to provoke others. 

“Fine! Let me just say this. It is my fault! My fault for choosing the wrong course. My fault for choosing to learn the religion, Islam! Do you know why I learned Islam? It is because I hated this religion since I was young! You knew I wanted to be a Christian! You remember at 15 I attended church. You told me nobody else had been anything but Muslim. Your father had been a Muslim, you said that. But when I learned Islam, I found out your father has never been a Muslim. Islam doesn’t teach us to call out to evil spirits as helpers! Your father did that. So was he a Muslim? You tell me! This is Ramadhan. I am saying this to you! My heart and soul have always been Christian! I did my best to learn Islam to see what was so good about this. Truly, I was wrong to choose Islam. So, bear this in your mind! As a mother, bear this in your mind, I preferred to be a Christian! And you told me I was wrong to choose to study Islam. Bear that in your mind too!” 

Silent. She was happy and peaceful.

Maria and I had been hurt since young for being fooled by her most of the time. She played drama and emotions with us. Most of the time. She bullied our father. She disrespected him. She made everyone think she was pitiful and my father was bad. 

Why did my father come back from Jerusalem disoriented and begged me not to believe her? 

“Maria, whether we are Muslim or not, we can never make someone believe something. We can never force someone to feel good about it. It’s okay. Let’s hope we can get out of this darn family, and not even have her with us. She will destroy marriages with her vengeful heart.” I said to console my inner child. 

“Well, she can go to heaven by herself. With no residences and neighbors. Only she can go to heaven. We don’t…” said my inner voice. 

“Even if she marries me off, even if anyone had sex with me upon marriage, even if I give birth to a baby, it will not change I am her daughter, and I can drag her to hell if I want to. You know what…why do we even care about her? So what if the world thinks we are bad children? Do they know what she did in our life? No!” I said.

“I never want to hate who she hates. I also never want to get near who she hates or likes. They are toxic. Perhaps she just loved to create havoc and then put the blame on others. Who finishes a degree study in a year?” consoled Maria.

“She forgot the 1st daughter failed after 2 years of junior college which was the foundation to University. She repeated for the 3 years I was studying diploma course. Total 5 years to pass her foundation!!!” I said.

“Uh-huh…5 years foundation in total. Then 5 years of a part-time degree at SIM University, but failed again her sociology paper and repeated it 1 year! So 5 years foundation, 6 years Uni huh? 11 years before finally graduated!!!!” scorned Maria.

My inner voice was very hurt and so was I!

It was all our fault. We chose the wrong course – Islamic studies. We should have taken non-religious studies and we should have gone to the High Commissioner of Oath in the Supreme court to denounce our faith. Right? Yeah. This is the whole irony of living in a toxic old mindset fam.

There is no Ramadhan this year. There is no Eid this year. My dad struggling with his brain cancer tumor, and here my mom always instigates something to quarrel about every year. If not with my dad, she will do it against me. 

As for my readers, my inner child and I needed this space. Spare us your judgment if you have nothing nice to say, please. 

Other sources link to the featured photo: https://unsplash.com/photos/3zgllN5P7Mc

Recommended1 Simily SnapPublished in All Stories, Faith, Memoir, Non-Fiction, Opinion Piece, Personal Narrative, True Story, Young Adult (YA)


  1. Norlisa, I can’t even begin to imagine how you feel. I’m sorry that you are going through so much. Your father seems really I’ll and I hope that he will be in less pain and recover if that is possible. I hope that your mother will be more understanding. I wish I can give you a hug.