Love is all around

Raya is a mem­o­rable time for bond­ing for Ha­nis Za­likha and fam­ily.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Showbiz - By AN­GELIN YEOH en­ter­tain­ment@thes­tar.com.my

WHEN ac­tress-host Ha­nis Za­likha cel­e­brated her first Hari Raya with her then-boyfriend Hairul Azreen, it was dur­ing a work oc­ca­sion. Ha­nis was co-host­ing a show on the first day of Raya with Datuk Aznil Nawawi.

“I re­mem­ber that night in 2014 very clearly. I had to do a Malam Raya gig with Pak Nil and Hairul was on the show as a guest artiste. It was a proud mo­ment for us be­cause we got to do a show with a leg­endary per­son like Pak Nil.

“The whole show was meriah (fes­tive),” she said at an in­ter­view in Kuala Lumpur. A year later, they got mar­ried.

As both of them are from Se­lan­gor, cel­e­brat­ing Raya with their re­spec­tive fam­i­lies is easy.

“We are very lucky be­cause our fam­ily houses are not that far apart, with one in Shah Alam and an­other in Ser­dang. I can’t imag­ine be­ing mar­ried to some­one whose kam­pung is far away, and he feels the same way,” Ha­nis said.

For Ha­nis, Hari Raya be­comes a more mean­ing­ful cel­e­bra­tion when there is tol­er­ance and ac­cep­tance.

She said as hus­band and wife, they needed to es­tab­lish an un­der­stand­ing on to how to di­vide time between two fam­i­lies.

“We want Raya to be joy­ous. I un­der­stand that he wants to spend time with his side of the fam­ily and I want to do the same with mine as well. So, we take turns.”

The one thing that Ha­nis looks for­ward to dur­ing Hari Raya is the mo­ment when every­body asks for for­give­ness from one an­other.

“Gen­er­ally, we feel a bit shy about ask­ing for for­give­ness. So, some peo­ple look for­ward dur­ing Hari Raya to do so.

“Peo­ple use this time as an op­por­tu­nity to open up emo­tion­ally and pour their feel­ings.”

She said what mat­ters is for peo­ple to let go of the past: “It’s a turn­ing point to start some­thing new and bet­ter. A new be­gin­ning.”

Ha­nis and Hairul now have one-year-old son Yu­sof Iskan­dar. She wants her son to be around their fam­i­lies as much as pos­si­ble dur­ing Hari Raya.

“Grow­ing up, my fam­ily tra­di­tion was to go back and visit rel­a­tives in our home­town. I want Yu­sof to know that our re­spec­tive fam­ily houses are his kam­pung.”

She also hopes that when Yu­sof gets older, he’ll make it a point to be with his fam­ily dur­ing the fes­tive sea­son.

Ha­nis, who of­ten shares tips on pre­par­ing baby food via so­cial me­dia, said Yu­sof loves nasi himpit.

“I’m go­ing to make him spe­cial baby-friendly nasi himpit. My hus­band loves le­mang. I have a sim­ple fam­ily. They don’t even like lauk, so I can have that all to my­self!” she said with a laugh.

— KAMARUL ARIFFIN/The Star

Ha­nis with hus­band Hairul and son Yu­sof.

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