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“And what would you describe as painful?” He asked.

“Knowing that it will never happen. Knowing that.” She replied.

“But then what would you describe as contentment?” He went on, confused.

“Accepting the fact.” She turned away, ending the conversation.

It’s Raining Bliss

Drip drop
Non stop
cats n dogs
sewers clog
Faces glow
Streets flow
children yell
Greens swell
Clouds roar
Birds adore

We pray for more
A blessing huge
Monsoon deluge

It rained after an entirety of five months. No doubt how much every living creature needed it. A bliss of Allah came to us as a gift of Eid. ShukarAlhumdulillah:”) Below are some of the pictures I took after all the greens had taken a good bath. Hope you enjoy them.

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Polished and buffed

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Fresher pink

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Ring a ring of posies

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Colours of the Paki flag

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Dark clouds galore

 

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L’il birdie enjoying the in-between drizzle

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People rushing to their homes

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Message from the clouds: We ain’t stopping even after the sun has set

Remnants Of Ramadan

Note: The following post is mainly intended for Muslim readers, hence containing first person pronouns such as ‘we, us and others’. However anyone else in general, interested or curious, may feel free to read it^-^

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Most of the times we usually consider an ‘ending’ to anything good as sad or regretful. We usually connect endings with teary eyes, dull faces and longing sighs. On the other hand it is quiet the opposite when the end comes to a tyrannical rule, days of war or simply a malicious little pimple on the side of your cheek. One feels grateful, happy and relieved. It is however a bit different and same with Ramadan.

That’s the beauty of it. It leaves us sad but it ends with three joyous days of Eid. For whatever time I have spent on Earth, I have never witnessed such a paradox of sentiments within the same phenomenon. I might have experienced fractions of such a possibility at some instances but right now as I try to think hard, I can remember none.

What I experienced yesterday was very similar. I felt an immense sadness engulf me all over like a thick gray cloud because the days of bliss were over. That may sound exaggerated but I would be only dishonest to myself if I do not put it that way. I had emotionally and physically experienced a spiritual high, I had felt protected, less anxious and stronger during the month. Of course I do not force it upon any other Muslim in the world; it was just my own little experience. The realization that the inevitable end of the month had finally arrived made me feel so vulnerable, defenseless and melancholic. I really couldn’t just bring myself to the notion of celebrating Eid. All I could think of was could Eid really be this sad?

At the same time, however; I couldn’t help but feel a bit excited about the next day and as soon as it started, I slowly but surely gave in to the positive vibes of the joyful day. Even though Eid’s are not as home to introverts as they are to extroverts (as Farees puts it), I could still feel and observe the little spurts of joy throughout the day, Alhumdulillah. I would Insha’Allah write another post rounding up the happenings of all three days of Eid some other day but right now I want to come back to the actual purpose of the post.

In spite of all the reinvigorating and merry vibes of Eid, Ramadan is over and this year it has left me feeling a bit empty. It will not be wrong to say that I have been trying to hold on to the remnants of Ramadan. It does feel like a shield of protection has been lifted off and I can not help but miss the daily suhur, iftar, prayers and an air of holiness about my place. Perhaps what I will miss the most and have been largely uncertain about is the connection with the Almighty which had developed over the month. To put it very honestly, all of this is a highly individualized experience. Therefore, I do not expect anyone to relate. The reason why I am putting it here is just to give an outlet to the many feelings and thoughts which have left me quite confused and out of place.

However if there are still some Muslim brothers and sisters who ended up feeling the same, the next few words may comfort you a bit. If you feel like despite trying you were not able to make the most out of this month; if you feel that your Ramadan couldn’t be as picture perfect and neatly organized as many blogs posed it to be; if you feel like there still were days where you felt too drained (emotionally/physically) to maintain the soul in your worship; if you feel that you could have probably done away with a few more days of fasting and a few more days of earning extra thawab; if you feel like some of the days were simply wasted and some of the prayers you just could have made more-then do not tense yourself up or get anxious about it. It is okay.

Sometimes we try our best and do not get what we have been aiming for, sometimes we do not make half the efforts and end up with more than we have expected. The consequences in reality are just a step of ladder to what comes ahead. Your effort should be the actual source of contentment and so as long as you tried to make something out of this month, as long as you intended to perform acts of goodness and kindness; you did a great job. True the month is over and we are left feeling a little empty and suspended, there’s still something we can do.

Out of all those charities we made during the month, let’s not discontinue the one to that old lady who sits by the nearby shop. Of all the stray animals we fed during the month, let’s not stop hanging that water bowl for the birds. Of all those nawafils we offered during the month let’s not miss the two we prayed on Saturday nights. Of all the tasbeehs that we recited over the month, let’s make one of them our everyday habit. Of all the days we tried to restrain from lying and backbiting let’s select one day of the week when we would restrain from them throughout the year. Of all the Ramadan that we spent, let us keep a remnant or two of the Holy month for the rest of the year. With the hope that we are able to stick onto some of the good habits that we developed during the blissful month, I can safely conclude that even though the month of Ramadan has ended, we can still let it continue its existence in some aspect of our lives until we get to witness the next Ramadan Insha’Allah.

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50 Posts

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The extremely unintelligible title shows how my mind has rusted over time because of not writing here.

But I had to break this block that had built over time and kept on getting uncontrollably bigger. I want to talk about so many things and yet none is worth an entire post. I was writing my diary a few minutes ago and there I wrote, ‘the reason why I am unable to write something on my blog for a while is either I do not get the right words or I feel like I won’t be writing for the relevant readers’.

I think I was caught up in one of those loops where the longer you stay away from the blogosphere, the harder it gets to come back in again. You are actually avoiding to post something because you fear it would be stupid so you keep on thinking for a perfect restart yet the more awkward it keeps on getting the longer you do not write. Tautological.

It is then that you have to write such a post as this.

As much as I fear that this is going to be such a banal, uninteresting, even obtuse piece, it is also equally important in nature because this would immensely help me to get back on the writing track again.

And what else other than writing about my writings could be a better topic to write upon? (I know there is something wrong with that line). WordPress notified me that I had made 50 posts here. It was congratulating me on the achievement. And although I am not quite sure as to how come ranting, venting, bleeding, puking and pretending you know something on a digital platfrom could really count as an achievement, I am highly pleased and impressed by WordPress’ acknowledgement. One does not find that kind of encouragement elsewhere let alone a well-wished appreciation.

So maintaining my humble composure, as I usually do, I would like to thank myself (this time) for actually letting myself being me. I realized that I suppress my true self at a lot of places either because of some sacrifice I have to make for a loved one or because of societal norms or because I may get more virtues or sometimes simply because I cannot afford to be myself.

In writing however, I never gave up and as much as I am thankful to Allah and all the other people who helped me to get here, I am also proud of myself for not stifling the writer within me. Ever since I was a child, I loved reading and writing. Many of us do. Then most of us grow up and leave our hobbies behind. Most of us are encouraged by our parents and other family members to only seek this useless activity in leisure time. Some of us are even looked down upon, or just dismissed as misunderstood, hard to comprehend individuals of the society.

Fortunately I got a couple of those misunderstood, hard to comprehend individuals of the society as my friends and I entered this safe haven where I could freely write whatever and whenever I wanted without any time limits and word limits to take care of. I would like to thank all those friends and would have loved to put their names in here but today I want this post to be about me. I want to be a little selfish and narcisstic today.

These 50 posts on WordPress are 50 proofs of the writer that lives within me and the amusing part is I do not have to prove this writer to anyone else but myself. These 50 posts are an exhibition of my pain, relief, sadness, happiness, reflections and retrospections but above all they are the exhibition of my ability to weave words into sentences for all of us do feel, but all of us do not write. These 50 posts are an answer to my question which I made on the same blog of When would you write like a writer? These 50 posts are 50 power punches to all those who made me feel I was not good enough or that I was not meant for this or that studying Literature was an emotional decision or that although I could write but there will always be people who write better than me so I shouldn’t waste my time after all or even that writing was too hackneyed a concept which a productive person like me should not waste my intelligence on. Looks like I didn’t quite make a fool of myself, did I? These 50 posts are also an indicator of your love and encouragement. This your refers to all the readers who are reading these words right now. All my followers, all the silent readers, all the accidentally-dropped-on-this blog people; each and every one of you is responsible for this number 50. I know I am a sucker for motivation and encouragement and would have soon given up on maintaining this blog if it weren’t for all of you.

Thank you for sticking with me and thanks to myself for sticking to the writer in me. Sometimes one just needs to let it flow, to appreciate all the typing effort and thinking effort one makes to create a blog post. Sometimes its okay to be selfish and narcisstic. Sometimes one needs to write that first post to reach the 50th and sometimes one just has to start off with an unintelligible title to make it to the 51st post.

Upon reading it from the start, it doesn’t sound that bad after all;D

Happy blogging and stay tuned for more!:)

You Are a Reflection of What You Love

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Dear Farend,

You say that you love me
But never do you show
Whenever I tell you, “You move me”
Surprised, you reply with an ‘Oh!’

You say that you love me
But never do you believe
When I tell you, “You are lovely”
You negate in disbelief

You say that you love me
But never do you realize
That you are a masterpiece-to-be
What with that fire in your eyes?

You once told me, that you love me
I discussed the power of your words
You replied, ‘They are not worthy’
So I made all the ‘I love yous’ unheard.

You always talk of love with me
One that you say you have for you
Then type a detailed self-critique,
Making all that love untrue.

You always tend to shove me
When I number things at which you’re great
You dismiss all my numberings
With one of what I enumerate: debate

Though your skill with numbers is above me,
You astound me with words too,
But always you interrupt me
With an ‘Oh it is just you!’

So dear Farend, how come you love me?
When you can barely ever agree
With my opinions of how you are
I suppose I have the right to question thee
Why this pretense of hypocrisy?
When I am just a reflection of who you are.

Death will always hurt the same

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I do not know how to quiet my mind

I do not know how to hush my soul

They are speaking yet words are hard to find

Nothing can ever stitch it back to whole.

I will never know perhaps. The answer will always be too blur and my irrational thoughts will always be too vivid. Perhaps my irrational thoughts will always appear too rational to me. This is perhaps the third post I am making about death. First it was Amjad Sabri whom I was connected to through just some qawwalis he recited. Then it was Junaid Jamshed whom I was so much more connected to, because of his inspirational speeches, transformation and naats. Then it was my maternal grandmother’s (nani’s) turn (whom I did not post about). The first two were not related by blood. The third one was surviving through those extremely feeble days of age when one has accomplished most of the goals if not all. It was still bearable. I had no memories with the first two people I mention in the post except that they were public figures. With my nani, I had enough memories, more than I will probably ever recall in life.

But this death….it just hurts so much. Or perhaps it always hurts the same.

First it is the drowning. You get the news and seconds later it is all going down. Not like someone pushed you into the ocean but more like you dived in and are making no efforts to move your hands or legs. Calmly, yet unwillingly you are going down down down into the the depth and darkness. Few minutes later, you are okay; you are not crying…obviously because it hasn’t really sunken down. Too hard to believe. Too unusual to believe? Then the realization strikes that it has happened. You will never ever ever see that person again. They are gone. Forever. Your mind produces continuous images of them lying dead, sleeping peacefully, eyes closed..coffin? This is when a deep and strong heavy wind of grief encircles you and just stays there. You sit with it, stand with it, move with it. And along with the exasperation of this heavy air the feeling of helpessness starts to cave in on you. You cannot do anything. It is as it is. Everyone has to die. All are equal in the eyes of death. You have no excuse to complain. Complain to whom anyway? It is no one’s fault. But I feel so hurt. Perhaps it is the only hurt in the world which you cannot blame over anyone neither yourself. It is just a hurt one has to bear.

In my personal opinion, there are two types of deaths or let me say deaths of two categories of people which hurt the most. People we are dependent on: emotionally, financially, in every way. We are so extremely dependent that it almost feels like one or more tendons of the heart are invisibly attached to theirs. Honestly could be anyone, usually your parents, siblings but could be an internet friend, best friend, husband, wife, teacher. Anyone. Just someone very very close to one’s heart. And then the second category is those of children and adolescents. No matter who the child or teen is, his/her death claws on the heart in an eccentric way. Simply because they have been just too young too die? Specially the ones who have been so enthusiastic about their lives. Have had so many amazing goals and dreams in their eyes and on their minds. They have yet to experience the viles and ecstacies of this world: heartbreak, graduation, betrayals, marriage, job…life. they have yet to experience life but it ends.

I try my best to not get too over taken by this phenomenon of death. Perhaps I am more disentangled when it comes to death. I realize it has to happen, I try to swallow the bitter tablet, perhaps with a little more ease. I am aware of the fact that, I could just die the next moment or tomorrow and I believe in the uncertainity of life. Of course it brings shivers down my spine to envisage someone else, someone very close to me..walking down that lonely aisle. But it is there and I try to accept it.

My cousin, 15 years old, student of 10th grade aspiring to become a doctor, one of the sweetest and competitive, patient girl I have known, Areesha, passed away. Medical problems? Sure she had them, ever since she was born. Those are the best excuse anyway. But she had improved, she was leading a healthy perfect life just like anyone of us, going to school and studying hard. She had to sit for her board exams this year and I am sure she would have aced it. But life..sorry, death happened. Six months ago, her health starts to go down, a kidney has failed and transplant is not possible. She’s bravely averaging three dialysis per week, nothing but astonished at the sudden course her life has taken just before the final exams. She insists to give her papers even though everyone knows her education cannot really continue anymore, at least not the normal way. But she was ambitious, she wanted to live, she wanted to live like everyone else, like she had been living for the past 14 years. Determined as she is, she buys four dresses for Eid. I am still moved by the level of conviction she had about living up until it came. She gives her Physics practical, upon returning home she calls her mother to bring along a gift from work because it is her friend’s birthday the other day. And she dies that evening on her way to hospital, the gift still sits on her side table.

Medically, she was having great difficulty breathing, they had the oxygen cylinder at home and she was still breathing from that cylinder in the car as her parents rushed to the hospital when she breathed her last. Actually, this was all the time she had to live in this world.

I do not have the emotional strength to talk about the beautiful memories I have with her.  How she always looked up to me as her elder sister. I cannot imagine to explain how she told me elaborate details of what subjects she wanted to choose in college or how she always appreciated me taking Psychology in A levels. All I can probably manage to type is that she had once said, ‘I want to be like you. You are my role model.’

Obviously enough the reason to write this is not exactly share the grief. How can it be shared after all? It is not to gain sympathies either of course, because hey she is gone. And although the real real most painful grief is what her parents are going through right now (her younger brother is too young to even understand I suppose) but it’s just awful. It hurts me. I need to write it out. I need to blatantly announce that once again I am left utterly hopelessly sad. Sad for her, sad for her parents-and grief stricken for her younger brother who was so close to her. I am wondering how would he sleep alone in the room now. And it is just more horrible becuase she was young. She was ambitious about living. She had dreams. Such deaths may not be a rarity in this world but it sure was the first such case in my family.

Can I say I feel so dreadful, with the thought of it could be anyone next. Anyone very close to me? That it could be me too? It doesn’t make me anxious or upset..but it just makes me so so rueful about the fakeness of this world and life.

May she rest in peace. May Allah grant her jannah. Ameen.