Monday, February 28, 2011
Friday, February 25, 2011
First of all, I learned a lot about my family and how I took them for granted so, so much. And a home. The word “home” means so much more to me now, then it did when I lived with my family. What makes a home? Well, more than one person---that’s for sure. My apartment truly felt like a home when my grandparents came to visit. Now they are gone and it no longer feels like a home. Its just a place where I sleep, shower, breathe and cry. I have been trying to spend as little time as I possibly can at my apartment because it just makes me feel lonely and it makes my mind wander, which is not a good thing. Thank God for the comfort of my school and library.
I guess you learn about your friends too. I’m so grateful to have people who care for me and I really learned this so much more when I moved away. Honestly, I really learned how much some people cared about me. Its nice, and it also sucks sometimes. Its nice because its comforting and it sucks realizing that some people just want to be your friend when you are visiting “home,” but not when you are far away.
Oh. I've also had my first few experiences this semester of feeling "helpless." I mean I've felt helpless before. But I am far away from "home" and there were three instances I really felt that I could've been there for my family and a friend. I hated it.
Other than that I’ve also learned a lot of things I would’ve never learned if I never moved away. People always told me I lived in a bubble and I would get so mad. But I guess it was so true. And it still is, but now it’s a bubble that’s been popped, and still in the process of deflating. I’ve met so many different types of people and I’ve learned a lot about different different cultures and lifestyles—more than I’ve learned the last four years of my life. Fo real.
And there is still so much more I wanna learn. So many things I'm curious about and so many people whose stories I want to know. Everyone has a story. Everything has a story.
Anyway. I’m really really trying to force myself to like it here. And its kind of working☺ Well, kind of. I’ve started to enjoy and adore school, so that’s a start. God willing I will soon enjoy and be grateful for everything else!!
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Sunday, February 20, 2011
This afternoon we received an e-mail from one of the doctoral students RE her dissertation, she is Libyan, and her husband and other family is currently in Libya. She has asked us to let
people know what is going on. Please feel free (actually, please feel
compelled) to forward this message as far and wide as possible. I have
deleted the student's name for the sake of her safety and her family's
Begin forwarded message:
>> Date: February 19, 2011 5:45:42 PM EST
> Subject: Re: hoping that everything is well
>> Thank you so much Dr. xxx
>> I have spoken to him and my family in Benghazi. They are all well.
>> In Benghazi, the situation is terrible; there are massacres occurring.
>> People getting shot by helicopters and snipers; there have been reports
>> of poisoning of the city water supply and mercenaries from sub-Sahara
>> Africa and Algeria have been unleashed reportedly being paid $30,000 each
>> to kill innocent people. Please spread the word among your colleagues and
>> urge everyone you know to contact the UN, the Red Cross and Crescent, all
>> news agencies, the State Department, and the White House. Please tell
>> everyone you know; people are being massacred.
>> Thank you again for checking in. Please pray for the people.
I saw this on BBC new's comments page. Everything in the emailed matches up to things I have read on twitter, aljazeera english accounts from anonymous witnesses in Libya and etc. So I have no qualms and doubts in posting this up.
SO What Can You Do? Just spread the word. And here's a great site: www.libyafeb17.com
On a side note. Anyone watching the All-star game? Any bidders? East? or West? Kobe fan or LeBron?
EDIT: It's monday morning, the game is over, and its highlights are going to be played over and over again for the next week on ESPN. And the most important talking point will be on how Kobe schooled LeBron.
Friday, February 18, 2011
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Too lazy to type. Too lazy to think. Good thing my body breathes for me or else I might have been too lazy to do that. Isn’t it sad that I’m too lazy to type? I mean, could I get any lazier? I guess I could get those things that type for you. I forgot what they’re called. But you speak into a microphone and the computer does all the typing. My dad got that yearrrrrs ago. But he got frustrated with it since it didn’t work too well. Maybe it was the accent? hah. But his isn’t so bad.
So I am over the hill (25) and I feel kind of old, physically. My joints are giving way. I can’t work out anymore. Doing the work out video is killing my knees and my ankle joints so I’m sticking to running every other day. I’ve always had ish with my knees. Growing pains, they said. Haha. Is there such thing??
You know what I did? I did something dumb. I made a promise to God if I passed my exam I would fast for a month. Then I passed. And I was happy. And then I was like, “o crap”. So while the days are shorter I’m trying to do as many as I can. A month is a lot. I should be used to fasting since Muslims fast in Ramadan anyways, but it’s a whole different experience. I feel like God has mercy on us or something because the time FLIES by and I don’t realize I’m fasting.
I went through a vanity crisis, which could have been associated with my quarter-life crisis. Months before my birthday I realized I was turning a QUARTER OF A CENTURY old. I got sad. Then I noticed I had dark circles under my eyes. I didn’t want to use chemical junk on my skin nor did I want to conceal the circles, since I don’t wear makeup on a daily basis. I wanted them gone. I was getting sufficient sleep so I had no idea why they were there. So I stuck tea bags on my eyes. And cucumbers. and I put some vitamin cream on the area to strengthen the capillaries and skin. And then they were gone. I heard water is good to prevent these circle. But if it runs in your family, you might have a harder time with them.
Alhamdulillah I have very low maintenance skin. I don’t even use soap. So when I get a stubborn pimple or anything that doesn’t go away in 4 hours I go crazy. But my reaction was escalated due to the fact that I realized I was getting older. If people asked me how old I was I would say 24, but think 25 in my head. And then I became a quarter of a century old. And then. nothing.
It’s not so bad. I’m glad I’m old. No drama. <3
This is a random random post. But that’s how my mind goes. And I type how I think and I can’t help it. Peace. <3
Monday, February 14, 2011
Texas is an interesting state. The people here have a ton of pride for their country and for their state. It is also home to the most conservative cities. The funny thing is, I am from America’s number one liberal city. Being a Muslim and wearing a scarf on my head, I get a lot looks. But, the people here are also SO KIND. The term “Southern hospitality” is so so so very accurate.
Unfortunately I live in the south, in a very urban city, just like the city I come from. Every day crazy things happen. Boyfriends run over their girlfriends, husbands put their wives on fire, and you know—other totally normal things. Just kidding. I mean those things do happen, in fact those two stories were both on the news yesterday. But its not normal. Its completely crazy.
There are crazy people everywhere. Ever since I moved here I’ve felt so scared and unsafe. Yesterday my classmate’s apartment was broken into. That makes me so sad and scared, especially since he lives in a gated community.
I don’t feel safe at all where I live and the only thing that’s kept me going is the fact that I will move to a different community that is gated. But I guess that’s not even safe. So I don’t know what to do. I kind of just want to stay here because I don’t want to go through the trouble of looking for another place and starting all over. Though the community I live in is scary, I have kind of started to feel comfortable here.
I have my pepper spray in my hand and protection from God so God Willing, I will be ok. Everything will be ok.
Saturday, February 12, 2011
Not really sure how to put all this momentum and energy into solid words. But the feeling is just amazing. Its not only about Mubarak stepping down... its the fact that the whole world was behind Egypt united, standing for justice, and continuously supportive. Im not Egyptian and outside of a few friends in Egypt, I dont have much of a connection to that country. But I still felt part of this revolution... I cried, I cheered, I held hope... I just couldnt physically be with the thousands on Tahrir Square day after day.
From January 25th to February 11th, 2011, Egypt is finally FREE!
As a twitter junkie, I found some inspiring tweets about Egypt from celebrities to scholars to journalists to everyday Egyptians:
ArabRevolution تباً لك ياطاغوت by NickKristof
So the Danish are the first to stand up for #Egypt. While we vilified a whole nation for some cartoons. Puts things into perspective
DawudWalid الملا داود والد
#Obama gives credit of uprising in #Egypt to young people.
andersoncooper Anderson Cooper
Mubarak's lies continue.
YasirQadhi Yasir Qadhi
Mubarak everyone!!! Mubarak has gone :)
naveensyed Naveen Syed
Congratulations, #Egypt! So amazing, inspiring, motivational. You deserve it!
jamaaldiwan Jamaal Diwan
The largest non-violent protest in world history prevails!!! Pouring out tears and prayers for those who we lost along the way...
The ppl of #Egypt have affirmed that liberty is not a Western construct but a universally shared aspiration.
iansomerhalder ian somerhalder
Congratulating the people of Egypt- freedom is every living person's right! You deserve it! Dictators be done!
Alyssa_Milano Alyssa Milano
Happy Birthday, #Egypt!
Ghonim Wael Ghonim by LowkeyMusic1
Dear Western Governments, You've been silent for 30 years supporting the regime that was oppressing us. Please don't get involved now #Jan25
Spent the last couple hours giving out candy on the Diag. People's faces are hilarious when you tell them "Happy Egyptian Revolution Day!"
#Egypt did for itself in 3 weeks what the US could not do for #Iraq and #Afghanistan in nearly 10 years. Peace, not war, overcomes #terror.
Today I'm so incredibly proud and inspired by the power that #egypt claimed back for itself. I'm proud of my family that contributed to it.
DawudWalid الملا داود والد
we bombed Iraq to replace a dictator we propped up.#Egypt, it happen without bombs. So much for the inherently violent Muslim talking point.
NickKristof Nicholas Kristof
Muslims and Christians praying together in #Tahrir. Very inspiring. Le'ts hope--and pray--that that unity persists.
**While we're in the midst of celebrating Egypts freedom, however, lets just not forget that it all started with a man in Tunisia who set himself on fire in protest to the Tunisian dictatorship. This is proof. One person can make a difference.**
-Empty Words (Guest Author)
Friday, February 11, 2011
There are times when I feel troubled but I can't put my finger on the source of the problem. I feel crummy inside and I don't want to share my feelings with anyone in fear of gossiping or wasting time.
A long time ago I realized how important it is to look for the fault of problems in ourselves. Meaning, there are ways we can change a situation. As the old saying goes, if you're not a part of the solution, you are a part of the problem.
I am a person who used to get sad a lot. For no reason. Or because I wouldn't get over things. Alhamdulillah, thank God, that has changed.
I am also a writer. I have sudden urges to write. At those times I scramble for paper, pencil, and start writing on anything I can find. Sometimes even napkins. If I don't I will forget what I have in my mind at that exact moment. (I wonder if poets can relate?)
It also helps with meditating, figuring out emotions and for me, often helps me think of a solution.
So on an AT&T mailed envelope I wrote:
...The deeds of a man cannot pay for even one of the many blessings of Allah (subhana wa ta’ala), because even the smallest of Allah’s blessings and favors on us far outweigh the deeds a human can perform. So bear in mind the rights which Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) has over us.
Trials & hardships and how to deal with pain: Navaid Aziz – He Who Has No One Has Allah: http://www.halaltube.com/navaid-aziz-he-who-has-no-one-has-allah
from the group "Ahadith per Day keeps Shaytaan away: part 2!!"
And I watched the video.
He said, Those who have no one, have God. Those who have God's pleasure, have everything.
Monday, February 7, 2011
Instead I did the next best thing, I sent out frantic text messages to all of them, telling them to come home asap!
And the most magical part was that I never had to move.
They came home eventually, and of course one of the cars is gonna get stuck in the snow. And they tried getting it out for Godknowshowlong. Eventually my brother C and my mom come inside and I find out about the battle going on outside.
I tell C about my miraculous like ability to get out cars that are stuck. And he says, "Of course its miraculous if you can manage to do it".
(He didn't actually say that, but if he was witty like me, he would have totally thought that)
So upon my mom and C's hailing of me, (is that like idiotic english?) I unselfishly lifted myself out of the computer chair, sadly turned back to look at the chair that wasn't sat in long enough to be imprinted, and marched over..... to the bathroom.
I had to pee.
Anyways, eventually I pulled on a second layer of pants, kept my super funky and bulky prayer scarf on , and pulled on my oldest jacket with my long, completely mismatching kurta sticking out from underneath, and went out to help my family get the car unstuck from the snow. It's not like there's anyone out there other than my family.
I step outside, see our neighbor's car and at least one of my brother's friend out there helping out my dad and my brothers, and turned back around and walked straight back inside.
Not really, I ran into C who yells out "who cares!", and I say, "You're right! Who cares!"
And I go back out determined to show my ability to take out the car. I get into the driver's seat, turn the wheel completely, and yes, miraculously pulled the car out in ONE go.
Then I yelled out to C, "I TOLD YOU!"
Brother B remarks, "It could have helped that there were at least 5 guys pushing from the front," He always got stuck with the minor details.
P.S. If you're curious about what a kurta is, look it up! It's a south asian clothing.
P.P.S. My title has nothing to do with my post. So don't focus on it. You will get confused
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Personally, I think its amazing. It's history in the making! A new revamped Middle East? Who knows, maybe. All I know is that these people have been living under fear and injustice for 30 years. I remember once asking one of my teachers back in Cairo why he didn't grow his beard out, a common Muslim practice. His response: "I fear the government will kill me."
Its hard for us Americans to understand the hardships lower class Egyptians have been dealing with. There is such an insane discrepancy between the rich and the poor. The rich are living it up in their Californian houses behind gated communities while the poor are living in tiny apartments or shacks piling up families of 10 into a bedroom or two.
When I first went to Egypt several years ago one of the first things I was told was not to talk about government or religion in public or on the phone. Imagine living that of lifestyle. Couple it with not being able to get properly educated or solidify a good paying stable job.
Yea, its a revolution. And its about time.
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
So much thought put in to try and prevent any outbreaks of violence BY the protesters yelling against their poverty and their restricted freedoms!!
And that was enough to jinx it.