October 31, 2010

Peace in the midst of chaos

Well the other day my sisters and I had our first book launch. Alhamdulillah, we managed to complete an ongoing project that now culminated in an all around, chaos induced, launch.
Now you can imagine how insanely busy we had all been- running around like crazy people trying to get everything done. There were invites to send, things to buy, presentations to be prepared and hall decor to be setup. We had a hundred and one things to do, not to mention that we were seriously short-handed!!!

The day of the launch, well... it was just plain down crazy. Apart from the fact that I was tired (and walking around like a zombie), there were so many last minute arrangements that still needed to be made that my mind was reeling at it all. I have to admit, I was stressing out! I kept freaking out about the crowds who had arrived earlier than expected, at the food that looked as if it was just too much, at the presentations we had to give and how unprepared we were... well, one can only imagine.

In the midst of it all, however, the time for Zohr salaah approached and I decided to leave whatever I was doing to first finish my salaah.
Let me tell you... that was all I really needed!!!

As I put my head down in sajdah, I allowed the inner peace to wash over me. Performing my salaah like this, in the midst of all the chaos, gave me such a feeling of satisfaction and contentment, that all the previous feelings of stress disappeared immediately.
Suddenly I was a whole new person. I made a dua to Allah (s.w.t) for ease and success and I simply stopped worrying. (worrying never helps anyway, does it?)

I left that room with a whole new outlook, with a sense of peace and calm. I was resigned to remain calm at the face of whatever may now come. Simply put, my salaah helped me to 'chill out!'

So next time you're feeling stressed out and unsure about yourself, just make wudhu and go perform your salaah. Really, if you let it, it can make a world of difference.

October 18, 2010

Communication these days!!!

Has anybody else ever found the urge to scream in frustration at your computer when you realize how ineffective they can actually be? (Probably not!)
Think about emails. You send someone an email with a certain tone, mood and message that you're trying to convey. But when they read it (unless they actually 'read' into the present situation) its all just words. How do they know what you're trying to communicate? You know what I mean?
So you wanna send a nice friendly message to a friend who you just fought with. You're write that you're sorry and that next time you wont do it (whatever you did) again. Your friend (who is still angry at you) assumes that you are angry at her, and when she reads your email she reads it with hostility. Her tone (in reading it) is hostile, and so she assumes that your tone (of the email) is hostile too. She takes your apology for sarcasm and anger towards her. Even though you really were sorry- she just didn't pick up on that!!!

Its really strange that despite the progress of communications technology, relationships and interpersonal skills have gotten so much worse! So you can chat for hours to a person- discussing anything at all, but if you see them tomorrow, you wont know how to talk to them... crazy right???
And what about all our virtual friends that we make. We don't even really know them do we? If we had to meet them tomorrow, would we have any idea what to say? (Though I suppose if it wasn't for virtual communication- then we wouldn't even know that person to begin with! I guess that in the absence of real relationships, virtual ones are the next best thing!)

Just discussing this reminds me of something my friend said the other day. She was feeling really bad for not realizing earlier that a guy liked her. See, he was emailing and chatting with her and was obviously throwing around hints that he liked her but she never even noticed. It was only a while after everything, when she was re-reading her old chats (for some strange reason) that she actually really 'read' all that was written and realized all he 'said'. That same guy now avoids her (I guess now she finally understands why!)
It makes you wonder doesn't it, how many things, feelings, moods, frustrations and problems are we missing out on with all of our virtual communication?
The world may be getting smaller, but I sometimes think that the distances between people are only getting bigger.

Oh, and I've come up with a crazy way of expressing my feelings when emailing. If I'm saying something important with a tone that's open to interpretation, i think I should include the following tag line: mood, tone, expression and outlook.
So my tag line for this post would look something like this:
Mood: happy yet reeling at the irony of communication today.
Tone: incredulous yet peppy.
Expression: slight smile.
Outlook: for communications in conjunctions with relationships- awfully bleak!!!

Have a great day folks!!!

October 11, 2010

No fairytale

Yesterday we all celebrated my parents 35th wedding anniversary...
35 years... wow...that's a really long time right???

My family and I leisurely spent the morning at the Zoo Lake. With kids running around, adults sitting around and everybody having a great old time, I wondered whether my parents could ever have imagined all of this 35 years ago. Seriously, I doubt it...

Often when we hear of people who stay together, we assume that their marriage must have been some kind of bed of roses, right? The truth is, and I've seen this with my parents, marriage is a real big struggle.

I've seen them argue over silly things, argue over bigger things, smile, laugh, cry, get annoyed with each other, happy sad, frustrated, calm. I've seen them having difficulties, and then Ive seen how easy things can be. What I learnt from them, however, is that marriage is no fairytale.
We often believe that the struggle comes when trying to find 'Mr Right'. Then, we assume, everything else will go smoothly from there on out. The truth, however, is that Mr Right is just as flawed as every other human out there. By the way, so is Mrs Right! So if you think you getting married to some perfect person who won't sometimes drive you up the wall... THINK AGAIN!

My parents' marriage has taught me that marriage is something that needs to be worked at. At times you will be forced to swallow your words (which so desperately threaten to escape). At times you will be forced to give in. Always you'll have to have loads and loads of patience. That's life. That's marriage...right?

Nothing in life is a fairytale and the sooner we get that silly notion out of our heads, the sooner reality can move in. Then when we're fortunate enough to sit joyfully, 35 years from now, with our spouses... we can look back at the road we travelled on and smile at all the bumps and detours that we once had to deal with. Believe me, it'll all make for many interesting stories for all the kids and grandkids!
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