Ease of peace…

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Every day there comes a time where my patience starts running extremely short and my mind is so exhausted that all I want to do is nothing. Think about nothing, act on nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing. In those moments I crave peace. The kind of peace that I feel can only come from a cool ocean breeze blowing in my face on a remote tropical island, or the sound of rain would bring while I watch it snuggled in a blanket on a comfy couch looking outside a window with a cup of hot chocolate in my hand, or when I drive on an empty highway without worrying about reaching on time or destination.
To keep my cool during that time seems to be the most herculean task in life, especially because this time usually arrives right before the kids’ bedtime where both of them are crankier than usual and pulling on each arm of mine to get a piece of whatever’s left from the day. I still have two or three errands to run after putting them to sleep yet when I lie down besides them all my body says is don’t move now that you are here.
What is it that makes me calm and decide to get up from bed then? I do it every day yet never thought about it without a hint of sulking and envy from everybody else who is asleep at that hour. Its the faces of my husband and kids peacefully sleeping away, the rhythm of their slumber slowly getting deeper, away from needing me and getting lost in dreams. Dreams they run after in their sleep. But for me that right there, looking at their faces brings an immense peace and tranquility, the kind that nothing in the world could bring. And I close my eyes and slowly thank Allah for Blessing me with the opportunity to experience it.
Family is the most underrated and taken for granted treasure bestowed to us in this world, I feel. We only cherish it when they are no longer there, and we mostly only value it after its worth has been shown. All the cheesy one-liners about family that I read throughout life now make solid sense. It is also the only thing that ties together every human emotion and relationship in one bundle thus being indestructible and unmatched when strong. The kind of peace and ease having a complete family brings is unmatched with any riches of the world. So I remind myself that, “Verily, with hardship comes ease.(94:5)” This little Ayat, to me, is applicable in every hard moment of life no matter how small it is. The ease following any hardship is what makes it worthwhile. Families are made with the ease that follows endless hardships but in the end they are the greatest blessing of all.
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Falling in love…

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Love is something that never grows old in that, as long as there is life, the notion will remain as intriguing and attractive to everyone as day one.

I’ve always found it absolutely, mind blowingly amazing that each and every soul in the world falls in love at least once in their lifetime. And this falling in love defines who they are at the core. This fall makes them unique and precious. Sometimes it lifts them while at others it lets them remain fallen. Nonetheless, it is this fall that gives everyone wings. Wings of expression, breaking norms, being unconventional. And when two souls fall in love together then the outcome is nothing but divine. I mean I don’t even have words to explain that feeling and sense of belonging that starts in the moment one realizes their love is reciprocal, as well as moments that follow for a lifetime thereon.

Writing about love is like trying to count the number of breaths from birth to death. It is immeasurable and impossible. Love is perpetual because if it stays, it leaves a lasting impact, and more so if it leaves, it stays forever too. There is no escape from it either way. Wherever we stand in the walk if life, whenever someone asks us if we have ever fallen in love, the first name to pop in our mind, the first face our eyes imagine at that moment, the first scent that we recall from the fog of memory, the first voice that rings in our ears, and the first smile and tears we think about, all in the first thirty seconds when someone asks this question is what is love.

It is incredible though when you fall in love yet it makes you rise no matter it stays or leaves. It is up to us how we handle its capacitance and voltage. Love has the power to burn or build. Those who get burnt eat nothing but dust, but those who build are the ones that leave behind legacies. For love only creates more love and it always wins.

Here’s to love’s victory for the good and the bad. May love rule forever.

Enough…

Anyone remember Elan Kurdi, the 2 year old Syrian boy whose dead body washed ashore in a foreign land? The day I saw that photo I hugged my two year old a little longer and a bit tighter because as a mother it gave me the chills and made me want to throw up looking at that innocent child who tasted the absolute worst and ugliest tragedies of life at such a tender age. I can’t let go of my child for more than a minute and Kurdi’s father had to let go of his hand and his brother’s in the middle of the ocean, knowing the waves would eat him up.

You want me to believe that Elan and the thousands of others like him, and their parents, who are fleeing terror and war themselves are the cause of everything wrong and malicious with the world? As a mother I find it beyond appalling. As a human being I find it beyond common sense.

I am as fearful of my children’s lives and futures as the average person. My life, and my family’s future is as much at stake as everybody out there being fed with lies and fear mongering. I’ll get one thing straight out. My religion does not even allow stepping on a spider because it helped our Prophet escape assassination. It does not allow cruelty to animals, and excused a prostitute her previous sins because she gave water to a thirsty dog in scorching heat. My religion gives as much rights to neighbors as it gives to one’s family, regardless of whatever religion or ethnicity they belong to. My religion propagates peace. Peace and peace alone. Humanity and humanity alone.

I cannot and do not want to stay silent anymore. I cannot afford to. My life is as much at stake as yours, probably even more because I cover my head and “look” dangerous. I cover my head because Mary covered hers, because Khadijah covered hers, because I feel precious and protected when I do so. My husband has a beard because Moses, and Abraham, and Jesus, and Mohammed PBUH are all respected and honored and loved by him. The reason we look different is because we love our peaceful religion. We’re different than those posing to be us, trying to make the world believe we’re dangerous just because we look different.

And just to reassure you, here are some ways we are exactly like everyone else:

-We love icecream
-We love reading books and long walks in fall
-We love bbqs with friends and beach days in summers
-We hate shoveling snow and every year have car trouble during winters
-My husband and I have a love marriage our parents were forced to arrange cuz we were just so madly in love!
-I crave sleep just like any sleep deprived new mother
-My father has Alzhiemer’s and it affects our family just like it does any other family
-My brother has Down’s syndrome and is like any other DS kid out there, loving and pure
-We cry and we laugh and we get frustrated, and we cry and laugh some more

I’d make this a long, long list but I think I made my point clear.

Whoever you are, whatever you do, please know that I am speaking on behalf of the majority of Muslims who wake up worrying about breakfast and what to make for dinner, to what to wear to work, and go to bed with the same worries; work 9 to 5 yet still live hand to mouth; love our families and friends to death; and also have personal faults like grunting instead of laughing, or having really bad sense of humor as anything related to farts or poop makes us laugh.

We need to use our ears and eyes more, and our mouths less. We need to think before we type/talk or even think. We all have the same colored blood in our veins. It doesn’t matter whose is shed in the name of what. In the end it will always be red, and the ones shedding it will always be driven by hatred and lies. Acts to widen the divide between humans will continue. What we can do is overcome them by showing them we are united. If we don’t act now there won’t be a world for our children to enjoy. Heck, there won’t be any children for the world to enjoy.

Truth always wins. Humanity breeds love. Knowledge overcomes ignorance. I’m human and I’m Muslim, and I have had enough. #notinmyname #islamispeace # children #forourchildren #enoughisenough