Archive for August, 2014

مش عارفة

Posted: August 29, 2014 in Uncategorized
 بطلت أعرف فعلاً أنا باحس بإيه أو مفروض أحس بإيه لما حد بيموت..

أفرحله عشان متأكدة إن الناس الحلوة اللي بتموت دي فعلاً مكانها مش هنا؟
والا أزعل علينا عشان بيفضلنا بس الناس اللي بيخلوا الدنيا دي مش مكان يتعاش فيه أصلاً؟
والا أفرح عشان الموت راحة وأكيد هما كده مستريحيين مع ربنا أكتر؟
والا أتضايق إني أنا اللي لسه موجودة هنا ومش معاهم فوق؟
والا أتبسط إني لسه عندي الفرصة إني أبقى أحسن عشان أعرف أقابل ربنا؟
والا أعيط عشان أنا لسه مش -وعمري ما هابقى- جاهزة إني أقابله؟
والا أحس قد إيه الدنيا دي بجد صغيرة وماتستهلش اللي إحنا بنعمله فيها ده؟
والا أقعد أخبط راسي في الحيطة جامد عشان الأحاسيس دي كلها وغيرها عمالة بتزيد جوايا كل شوية ومش عارفة أعبر عن أي حاجة فيهم خالص؟…

يا ربنا!

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“Happy Anniversary! You registered on WordPress.com 1 year ago!”

I received this notification over a week ago, and it brought back the memories of the day on which I created this blog. My 19th birthday. Back then, I wanted to challenge myself and write something every single day, until my 20th birthday. Yet that unfortunately did not happen, but for some reason, I still am proud of myself.

I am proud of myself because this can still be considered the year which I’ve done the most writing in. This blog currently has 103 posts, I have written a 50 page book during my writing course this semester, not to mention the very long messages and emails that I got to share with some beautiful people in my life every now and then. I have truly done so much writing, and even though I did not reach my original purpose, but before starting this challenge, I would have never thought I would ever end up with a little over 100 posts anyway, all written in one year.

Besides that, I have returned to some of my old writings on this blog, and noticed how much I’ve changed. Not just personality wise, but writing wise too. I have started writing more of what I felt, rather than what I thought I should be feeling. I have started not paying attention to the fact that this blog might have some readers, and started writing for myself instead, along the way. I have started setting aside the pieces of other writers that were embedded in me, for my own pieces were finally growing, and there was hardly any place for the old ones anymore.

Yet, I have definitely changed, personality wise too. This was one of the years that had so many depressing moments through its days, and I actually can’t help but wonder if the gloominess that took over most of the time this year, had to do with it being the year with the most writing? It doesn’t make sense though, because I still hardly ever wrote anything on my very sad days. How could there be a correlation between both then? Maybe there isn’t after all. But I have changed, that is what I am completely sure about.

I started the year with an amazing sense of contentment, which unfortunately kept disappearing throughout the very first months, and was only replaced by a new sense of contentment, towards its very end. I’ve grown quite attached to God as well, only towards the end of the year. Maybe it really is something about growing up. Maybe it has to do with aging. But it’s like all what I had in mind last year for how next year would be, totally vanished in the air, because of how unexpectedly it ended. I still seem to be content anyway.

I’ve learned this year that every person is messed up, in one way or the other, if only they allowed you to look close enough. And that no matter how much a person seems like they are holding themselves together, inside, you’ll see a very different side of them. Every walking human being on this Earth has something that makes them cry themselves to sleep every night, even if it doesn’t seem like it. It turned me into a more tolerating person, I guess. But more messed up person on the inside too, for all the messes that I’ve lately witnessed deep inside my close ones.

I’ve learned that no one will ever make you feel good about yourself, if you continue seeing nothing but the darkness inside you. And no one will ever be able to make you feel bad about yourself at the same time, if you learned to accept it, and become well aware of both; your strengths and your weaknesses. I’ve learned that the way you look at yourself is the only thing that governs your relationship with others. And if only you give yourself a chance, you’ll be amazed at all the things you never knew you could do. I’ve learned that it’s all within you at the end. Depending on people to define your self-worth, is the most degrading thing you can ever do to yourself.

I’ve learned that so many people will try to bring you down every time they notice you have something that they don’t know how to get. They’ll get you down, not by trying to acquire that thing, but by trying to make you lose it; by trying to make you think that you should have never even owned it in the first place, so that you’d let go of it yourself. People will do all sorts of things to you, and if you keep believing that every person has good within them that you reach a point where you can’t see any bad, you’ll have to suffer. And you’ll never reach the balance until you see all the darkness inside everyone at some point, then realize that extremes do not serve well on these issues. No one will teach you that, no books will show it to you, and no one will make you believe it until you try it all, and see for yourself.

I’ve learned that people will love you for all the wrong reasons. You’ll always be striving to protect your self image and all that, but when someone really falls in love with you, they will do it because of all the things you never saw in yourself before, or even thought about. I’ve learned that the hearts of people are one of the few things that can hardly be controlled.

I’ve learned that time heals. That what you once thought you can never live without, would eventually be the one thing you’d willingly let go of at some point. I’ve learned that it’s okay to lose people, because if you keep hanging on to those who are meant to leave, you are the one who’ll lose themselves in the process, and no one will even care.

I’ve learned that words heal too. And that written words can say so much more than spoken ones, if only people put the effort in it. I’ve learned that pain pushes you to write most of the time, but nothing still tops the feeling of writing during the very happy moments. I’ve learned that sharing words with someone, and bonding over them, is one of the most beautiful experiences one can go through.

I’ve learned that everyone leaves. Literally everyone. I’ve always believed that sisters were the only ones in the world who never would, until I saw them physically moving away, one after the other. And I understood then, that this was His call back to me. That I need to stop replacing Him. That I need not depend on anyone but Him. For He is literally all what anyone would ever need.

I’ve learned this, and so much more as well. I believe that all the lessons will come out when it’s time for them anyway. I believe that this year will be the product of the long awaited development process, only that the process will never fully end. I believe that this year will be different, and I wouldn’t want to miss out on something similar. That is why, I’m starting a brand new challenge, not with the intention of writing on a daily basis, because I obviously cannot make such a long commitment. But with a new challenge of writing at least once a week.

Let this be a new beginning, and may this be the start of something new.

بسم الله!

My 20th Turning Point

Posted: August 21, 2014 in Uncategorized

Today I turned 20. Today marks the official end of my teenage years, and the beginning of the new road which I used to refer to those who’ve reached it as “adults”, yet it turned out to be very different than how I used to view it. Today is the birthday that I used to think I’d be extremely depressed on; and naturally, I did start my day with tears, yet this time, they were extremely happy ones. Here’s my story.

I’ve been away from home for almost a month now, and so I was certain that my birthday was going to feel very different this time. Yet today, I was blessed with people who made me feel loved, celebrated my birthday with the cutest cake anyone has ever made for me, sent me unexpected flowers all the way from Egypt, and bought me gifts that absolutely made my day. It was just all what I could wish for, and I thanked God for the existence of such people.

Just as I was thinking that this was the end of my 20th celebration, the most precious gift I’ve ever received in my entire life made its way into my room, and got me into endless tears that I had absolutely no idea why they were streaming down.

20 handwritten letters, from 20 perfect friends and family members, who mean more than the world to me. 20 handwritten letters from 20 people whom I’d never be able to thank God enough for sending them to my life.

I literally cried so hard all the way through them, yet I haven’t laughed this much before, at the very same time.

Most of the letters had ‘sorrys’ at their ends, for the handwriting or the spelling/grammar/punctuation mistakes (teasing me for being someone who pays so much attention to that!), but little did they know that those handwritings and heartfelt words made their way into the deepest parts of my heart, completely melting my internals, and at the same time doing complete magic to my eyes and brain. Because no one would really understand what “words” mean to me, and how deeply I’ve fell in love with them even more after tonight.

Words. Written words, this weird invention that is just the product of different combinations of letters, have the ability to convey things that nothing else can. I’ve read words about me tonight that I have never been told in real life before. I’ve read feelings being felt towards me, that their writers haven’t communicated to me in any way. That is how powerful written words are; they remove all boundaries between people. They have the ability to carry feelings within their every letter, that might not be clearly written down, but can greatly be sensed between the reader and their writer. They can brighten up pages, not because of the way they’ve been written, but because of the way they’ve been felt. I can continue talking about words forever and never stop, but let’s just say that those letters that had people so much believing in me as a “writer”, made me not want to settle for anything less than that. And I wouldn’t mind spending an entire writing career, writing about writing itself, because those letter-senders made me realize tonight that every person does have a writer within themselves, and I have this deep urge to get them all out to the world.

Moving on to the actual content, it all brought me into tears again. I’ve been secretly making a certain Duaa for almost a month now, and I could feel that God was completely answering it all through these letters. I’ve been obsessed with Duaa lately, and He just keeps making me hold onto it even more. What’s better than the feeling of having Him right by your side on a special night like this?

ربنا إداني هدية لعيد ميلادي، لأول مرة من ٢٠ سنة. هو نعمه عليَّ كتير في كل وقت طبعاً، بس النهاردة أنا حاساه بيحتفل معايا بوجودي في الدنيا، لأول مرة من ٢٠ سنة. ربنا بيقوللي كل سنة وانت طيبة. ربنا بيبتسملي. مش من فوق، لأ هو جنبي. وكان بيقرأ الجوابات معايا وبيخبطني على كتفي في وسط كل سطر ويقوللي أنا أهو ما بين كل الحروف، شايفاني؟ ربنا ده أحلى نعمة في الكون.

A year ago, I’ve been told that I should stop overreacting with people, especially when it came to emotions, and how I always used to tell everyone how I feel about them no matter how cheesy it might sound, for others might start to sense fake-ness in everything I do or say (or at least that is what I understood I was being told). That had a devastating effect on me, and since then, I stopped doing anything related for a very long time after, and I was literally losing myself. But I was convinced that this is how things should always be anyway. I eventually distanced myself from so many precious humans that I used to know, and I distanced me from my own self most of the time. Yet most of these letters pointed out facts about that old self who used to openly talk about her feelings and make everyone know how special they really are (because everyone truly is, in one way or the other). Those letters were actually living examples of the person that I used to be; with the overload of emotions that they’ve sent inside me and their very unpredictable effects. They reminded me of who I was and who I enjoyed being. They put back the pieces of me that had been fiercely removed over the past few months, that after I was done reading them I actually felt like “I am back”. How could I’ve possibly allowed myself to let go of all those pieces? How could I do that to myself? I’m just thankful that I’m at least on my way back to whom I used to be, and I can’t thank these people enough for helping me on that.

The memories. Those letters that had a flood of memories which I’ve shared with their writers. I’ve actually had friendship timelines written down for me :’) and memories being retold in ways that made my heart smile. I used to always miss old days and want to get back to them. Now I realize I simply cherish them, for how they strengthen my relationships with those lovely human beings that I’m forever keeping in my life. And the best thing that was written down a lot by my life-long best friends, was the fact that no matter how little I talked or hanged out with them, we would always stay just as close. Those are literal blessings, and those are people that I’m sure are forever staying insha’Allah.

I’ve always believed that everyone does make a difference in the lives of those around them, but I hardly ever regarded myself as one of them. And so that was the most intense part of the letters; those parts that talked about how I might have affected someone’s life, or how I was a source of inspiration at times; touching someone with a Facebook status, or affecting them with a few of my words. Nothing compares to the feeling of knowing you’ve added something to someone’s life, without even paying attention to that. And nothing compares to the feeling of having God sending me such words whenever I keep praying for اللهم إستخدمنا ولا تستبدلنا. And nothing compares either to the word “proud” when it’s written to you from those whom you’ve always considered your own sources of inspiration. More tears, and more ‘Alhamdulillahs’ for having such people in my life.

The fact that “Glow” was written all over most of the letters (and my birthday cake itself as a matter of fact) makes me fall in love with this place even more, and makes me so sure that I’ll never regret what I’ve decided to put myself through this year, insha’Allah. This place was the reason behind the existence of so many of these letters, and for the existence of Basma herself, the way she is today. And I thank God each day for sending me to this place in particular, during my very first year at university.

I’ve also realized I’ve been blessed with the funniest friends on earth, for it’s never that easy to have me literally laughing out loud while reading written words, but they were perfectly able to push the laughs out high despite the streaming tears.

Last but not least, I am completely certain that God has granted me with the best sisters on Earth. For despite how thoughtful the details of this gift were, you gave me a reason to say that “tonight was the best night of my life” and truly mean every letter of it. Today was a turning point in my life, and you were the reason behind it. Thank you for taking the time to do this, and thank you for every person who took the time to write me something – no matter how short it was, and lastly, thank you for every person who drew a smile on my face today, whether it was through a call, a message, or a lovely bunch of flowers. 🙂

الحمد لله حمداً كثيراً طيباً مباركاً فيه.
بسم الله، بدأت السنة الجديدة. 🙂

Safiyah

Posted: August 20, 2014 in Uncategorized

She was just a 10 year old whom almost one month ago, I knew nothing about other than the way she used to stare at me with her big, rounded black eyes, whenever we interacted. I didn’t know that a month later she’d mean so much to me, or that we’d both be tearing up as we say goodbye and part.

“I hate it when people leave.” she said as we were going home, and it hit me right then, that this is exactly what I’ve been hating about my life all along, but didn’t have the courage to say out loud.

Safiyah, the 10 year old girl, taught me so much about life and about my own self, that hardly anyone could notice. She introduced me to the child within myself, who happened to bring so much happiness into my life ever since I knew of its existence. She got me dancing in front of a TV screen like a maniac, not paying much attention to the weird looks I was getting, and not minding doing it again – as long as I seemed to enjoy it. She was the reason we went to a carnival and rode the “freak out”, forgetting everything about life for a few hours and only focusing on the moment. She made me sing out loud to songs I had never even known before, just because singing with her was a joy. She truly got so many sides of myself outside, that I had previously thought they were already lost.

We played over 50 rounds of “Boggle”, and she hardly won a game, yet she never, ever gave up. She’d finish a round then start another one with the intention of getting me this time, but then it still wouldn’t happen and she’d just immediately go for another one, until she actually tied with me twice, and if we were to play more, she would have definitely crushed me. Every time we were done, I’d get the feeling that she’d just get bored and stop playing because she wasn’t winning, but she never looked at it that way. Instead, she kept paying attention to all the new words and techniques introduced in each round, making use of everything she learned during the next ones.

To me, she was a living example of Malcom X’s advice; “If you want something, you had better make some noise.” For every time she really wanted something, however impossible it seemed to be, she’d never easily take no for an answer. And most of the time, she’d really get what she wants. She always got me thinking about the whole “If you never ask, the answer’s always no” for all what she was able to get after simply having the courage to ask.

Safiyah had always noticed how everyone around was always on their phones, seemingly missing out on a lot. Instead of getting mad at everyone or keeping it inside though, she simply wrote a short article, that had everything she wanted to say, and forwarded it to all of us. She made us all think, and she personally made me want to start leaving my phone aside most of the time, as long as I wasn’t doing something that important. Eventually, I started not wanting to use my phone around her, because whatever that I was using it for, would never be more important than spending time with her. She just unconsciously encouraged me to let go of my phone more often, and live.

She taught me the real meaning of sisterhood, and how caring sisters can really get, despite all the fights that take place between them all the time. She taught me that honesty isn’t something bad, for how honest her opinions always were, about me and about everyone around. She taught me that age is literally just a number, for how she has already changed my life despite the 10 years difference between us

I absolutely love 10 year olds, and I love the 10 year old within me that they are the only ones who can bring out. May we all forever stay 10 at heart, despite how fast we keep growing up. And may we never stop realizing how life-changing a 10 year old can be.

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ضاقت، وهتُفرج.

Posted: August 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

إحساس إن ربنا شايفك في ضيق بس ساكت، وانت مش فاهم هو ساكت ليه. وبعد كتير قوي تفكر إنك تقعد تتكلم معاه وتدعيله، بس لسه حاسس إنه ساكت برضه. وبعدين تضيق عليك قوي فتدعي أكتر، ويبدأ يومك يكون عبارة عن دعــــاء كتـيــر، وشوية أحداث صغيرة بتحصل في النص – كنت زمان شايفها كبيرة بس دلوقتي مش قادر تحس بيها من كتر ما الدعاء بيكتر. وتفضل تدعي، وتطلب تاني، وتعيد، وتزن. وفجأة، تلاقي الحل لمشكلتك جي يخبط على الباب لوحده. وتكتشف إن الحل ده كان موجود طول الوقت أصلاً بس إنت عمرك ما كنت واخد بالك منه قبل كده. وتلاقي ربنا بيفرجها من عنده، وانت لسه مش فاهم إزاي اللي كان لسه صعب جداً من يومين ده، بقى أسهل حاجة دلوقتي.

هو ده بقى سحر الدعاء. بقيت باحب الأوقات اللي ربنا بيفضل ساكت فيها دي وبيتفرج عليا من غير صوت، عشان مفيش أحلى من إحساس إن فيه حد قاعد جنبك مستعد ومستني يسمع أي حاجة تقولها، بس إنت تتكلم! ومش بيغصبك تتكلم أصلاً والا يحسسك إنه مضايق إنك متجاهله، لأ هو بس قاعد ساكت ومستنيك عشان نفسه يسمعك بتقوله أي حاجة. وباحب أكتر الأوقات اللي بادعي فيها وألاقي ربنا لسه ساكت برضه، عشان بالنسبالي بقى معنى الدعاء هو “الإلحاح”. أي بني أدم في الدنيا لو فضلت تزن عليه عشان عايز حاجة، هيتعصب ويديهالك وخلاص عشان تسكت. بس ربنا بقى بيفضل مانعها عنك عشان تفضل تزن، وتُلِح، وهو يفضل سامعك، وإنت تفضل حاسس بوجوده بس مستني، عشان عارف إن كل تأخيرة وفيها خيرة. عشان هو أحسن حد في العالم ده كله يدبرلك أمورك. وعشان بجد، ما ضاقت إلا فُرجت.

“ضاقت فلما استحكمت حلقاتها … فُرجت وكنت أظنها لا تفرج”

يارب

صلاة الحاجة

Posted: August 6, 2014 in Uncategorized

كنت باقعد أفكر كتير في الأوقات اللي بابقى محتاجة فيها لربنا قوي، وإزاي الأوقات دي بتقربني منه قوي من كتر ما بابقى محتاجاله. بس كل مرة كنت باحس بالذنب إني مش باقربله قوي كده غير لما باكون محتاجة حاجة، لدرجة إن فيه أوقات كنت بابقى محتاجه حاجة بس مش باقدر أطلب من ربنا عشان باحس إني بتاعة مصلحتي قوي، وإني أحسنلي أرجعله لما أكون مش محتاجة لحاجة.

لحد لما عرفت إن فيه حاجة إسمها “صلاة الحاجة”. أيوة هما ركعتين عاديين ممكن أصليهم في أي وقت وبأي طريقة، بس فكرة إنها إسمها صلاة “الحاجة”، مريحة بدرجة مريبة. إن ربنا عارف إننا أكيد بنحتاج لحاجات طول الوقت، وكونه مخصص صلاة للسبب ده بس، أكنه بيقولنا:
“It’s okay to want things, and it’s okay to need Me for that.”

من وقتها مابقتش باتكسف أطلب من ربنا حاجات في أي وقت. ربنا نَفسه عايزنا نحتاجله ونسأله. ربنا بيحب إننا نسأله. هو عايزنا نقربله كده. وبعدين أصلاً مفيش حاجة إسمها “أحسنلي أرجعله لما أكون مش محتاجة لحاجة”، عشان بجد إحنا عمرنا في حياتنا ما هنبطل نحتاجله والا لحظة في حياتنا، والا هفوة، والا فسوة!

Magic

Posted: August 6, 2014 in Uncategorized

“اللهم يا جامع الناس ليوم لا ريب فيه اجمع بيني وبين ضالتي”

This prayer has an extremely special place in my heart. To some, it might only be a prayer for when things get lost and they want to find them. For me, however, it’s my proof that magic does exist in this world, and that God is literally the greatest of all.

Not once have I said this duaa, without immediately finding whatever it is that I’ve lost. Not once have I said it, and not felt how powerful and near God really is. My phone had been stolen two years ago, and yet it made its way back to me a week later, in the weirdest way ever, because of it. I dropped my iPhone’s charger in the street last week, yet the minute I said the duaa, it magically and unbelievably appeared right in front of me. My bag was lost in the airport for over a week, and it just came back yesterday after repeating this one sentence over and over and over again. These are just tiny incidents, for countless are the number of times that this duaa has saved my life.

Now, really, what is so special about this prayer? Why does it work like magic?
Because it’s not just a sentence, it holds much more than what is there. It holds the idea of extreme Yaqin and Tawakkul, because even though you might be the one who misplaced a certain item, when you say it, you’re implicitly telling God that you know it’s only Him who can get it back to you. You can go around and ask everyone if they have seen your thing, but you choose to remember God instead, and ask Him to do that for you. You’re feeling extremely bad about your lost item, yet you still choose to remember Him through it all. Maybe God makes us lose things because He wants to have us back, asking for His help – and only His. Maybe He just wants to listen to us asking.

The funny part is though, I’ve just found out that I have another version of this prayer memorized, and even though I’ve been saying it differently all this time, its effect has always been the same. Because He is the only one out there who does not listen to my words, but looks at what might be in my heart and responds to it. He is the only one who makes me comfortable talking to Him, because I am always certain that He will never, ever misunderstand my words, if He’s sure of my intentions. He… is the best.

This all made me think that, maybe, just maybe, this duaa isn’t just for materialistic stuff. Maybe it works for getting back the parts of me that I’ve lost over the years as well. Maybe my “dalla” is my “nafs”. Maybe, all what this duaa really needs, is someone to look beyond the words and understand its core. Maybe magic does still exist in this world after all.

اللهم يا جامع الناس ليوم لا ريب فيه، ردني إليك.