Thursday, September 10, 2015

Moved To Wordpress

Hi guys, I have shifted my blog from blogger to wordpress. Its still going through a lot of changes. Anyways, here is the link to the new blog. Life & Times

Everything is pretty much the same. But I have been meaning to move for a long time. And I finally got the time to do so.

Hopefully, I will see you at the new address. It is

Adieu !



Sunday, August 02, 2015

A Letter To Strong And Independent Women

Dear Nataliya, Nadia and Waliya Khan,

May 29, 2015. 

You do not know me but I know you guys quiet a bit. You see, I have been following you as a blogger and as a photographer for almost three years. That is a long time. Sharing a part of you on the internet lets the other person see that version of yourself.

The first time I came across you guys was through a friend who showed me this photograph, taken by Waliyah of your Dad's army uniform. Then I  read about your father passing away from cancer and the hard time you guys went through. I cannot say that its over. Because losing someone is never over. Its an ongoing journey that just gets older as time passes by. That does not make it any easier or any less painful.

Picture taken by Waliya Najib
When I read about your father, I thought to myself that I could feel the pain you guys felt. Because I have lost loved ones in my life. Things that you go through everyday. The fact that he is not at the dining table for breakfast in the morning. Or his empty wardrobe are all reminders of who he was.

I never fully realized what you felt until now. My father was in an accident on April 5. Long story short, he was unconscious for 23 days and underwent 8 major surgeries and numerous minor ones. The first time I saw him, lying on that hospital bed, hooked to a million machines, I thought of you guys. I thought of the hole that is in your lives. And I could not get over on how you do it.

He is a lot better now. He is awake. He is still in ICU but he is doing much better. You see you lost your father and I was about to loose mine. Now I know what you all endured. I know how it felt sitting in that hospital numb to the core, praying for your father's recovery.

Losing someone you love is very hard. You think that you cannot function without them. You believe that that loss is the hardest thing you will ever endure. But when its a parent on that losing table, the story completely changes.

I do not know why I am writing this letter to you guys. Maybe because I want to convey my words to you all. Or because I want you to know that you guys are strong beyond words.

Life is very hard. And the society we live in, is also very cruel. It doesn't wait a second to take advantage of you.

I prayed a lot for your father. He must have been a great man because he has left behind his daughters as his legacy. And when I read Nataliya's thoughts, I see the upbringing you all had. I see the love and care he bestowed upon you guys. And I see you all, living life the way he taught you.

One day, I want to meet you guys in person. I want to see for myself, those people who have been through so much in so little time. I want to experience your courage in real life.

I want you to know that our society needs more girls like you. We need more independent strong women who can handle things themselves, who are not afraid of anyone.

I wish I could say that it will all be okay. And it will be. But it will never be the same.

Your kids will never get to hear about the time you guys moved houses 9 times. Nano won't be there to plan the holidays 6 months before their arrival. Or stock the pantry with their favourite snacks. Or give them endless rides as a horse or a lion.You won't get the chance to have long discussions over a cup of Chai. You won't be able to tell him that his tie is crooked. Or that his laugh makes you laugh. Or that you will miss his views on Imran Khan's second marriage.

August 2, 2015.

My father finally came home on 22nd July 2015. We spent our Eid in the hospital, eating Biryani for breakfast and lunch, eating Almond Delight out of a dish. He had another 3 hour surgery on the third day of Eid, where steel rods were put in his leg. But he is okay. He is home. And he is okay.

You three are an example to many of us. You are a ray of sunshine because looking at you makes me realise that you can get through hardships in life. You can do it. Whether you are a girl or a guy, that is irrelevant. Gender has nothing to do with being strong or standing up for your parents.

People say that boys are ones shoulder in old age. I give these people your example.

My prayers and best wishes are always with you guys. I hope Anya grows up to admire her grandfather as much as I do. I hope that your mom continues to pain, write and inspire many more people. I hope all of you get the best of everything, today and always.

Yours sincerely,



Thursday, July 02, 2015

Day 4, July 2, 2015

12:20 pm

I am on a very good sleeping schedule these days. I mean, I am sleeping less and am still active throughout the day instead of dousing every few seconds. I sleep after Fajr which is 4:00 am in the morning and than wake up at 10:30 am.

Here is the problem though. I haven't been productive like I always dream to be. By that I mean, I have been watching Scandal. That is all I have been doing for the past four days. I would not mind it in normal circumstances but when your life is on the line, it kinda becomes important.

I do not know how to stop. The only way I know is to finish it.

4:38 pm

It was suggested today that I am a big spender. Unlike a loyal obedient wife, I don't save every tiny penny that comes out of my husbands pocket. Instead, I get late night ice creams and eat out on weekends. I buy shoes, clothes and books. I indulge in things that I shouldn't. I spend money when instead I should be saving it to buy property, build houses in Pakistan and buy Gold as a means of saving. Property that will sit there as some sort of back up, houses I will never live in and Gold that will sit in a bank locker only to be weighed and paid Zakat for, every year.

First of all, I don't think that I am a big spender. If I look back on this year, my biggest expense would probably be my books. All of whom are paid by the pocket money I receive. I have bought one pair of shoes, that also in sale. Its not because I could not. Its because I did not need any more shoes. I already have a lot.

The one thing I did go all out on was Abdullah's wardrobe. And trust me, that needed updating. Because it looked like a homeless person's wardrobe where half the clothes didn't fit him and half weren't even his. So, yes. I did buy a lot of stuff. Because I like men to be well dressed. They deserve to.

I am pretty proud of myself for the fact that I have controlled the way I spend money and have bought things that I know I will use. So when you hear someone tell you that what you are doing is wrong. It hurts like a bitch.

It makes you realize the mistake you have made of considering your husbands money as your own. It makes you hate yourself for getting married before finishing your studies, before standing on your own feet, before being independent enough to not listen to someone slap you across your face with words.

The worst part is that we did save money. And we spent it, doing something good for them.

People say that I don't have responsibilities. That's why I can spend money on things like food and clothes. As if living with In laws was not the biggest responsibility ever.

Nonetheless, let me make one thing every clear.

Even when I am responsible for feeding, clothing and educating my family, I am not going to spend money buying houses in places I do not know whether I will live in or not. Instead, I will continue eating out on weekends. And watching movies. And going bowling. I won't buy heaps of gold to add to my stash. Instead, I will be taking a vacation. Somewhere out of country, where my kids will get to experience different cultures and acquire knowledge. I will be spending on Disneyland tickets, ice skating rinks and seeing the view from top of the Burj Khalifa. That is how I will be fulfilling my responsibilities.

And if need be, I will be okay to cut down on all these things. But don't for a second think that I will deprive myself and my family the chance to live a life in the moment in order to make a life in the future.

I have been blessed enough that I was given a lot of things on my wedding. And I intend to keep those as my saving. I don't need a lesson in saving money for the hard times. I don't need to be told to keep it in control.

If there was one thing I was taught, that was to spend what is my budget. And believe me when I say that, even when I am buying a double scoop ice cream, I know that its in my budget. You can set your own budget. You can set rules for how you have spent your life and want to continue doing so.

But please, I don't agree with your views. Please, let me set my own budget. For once, let me do what I want. Let me be who I want to be.

Adieu !


Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Day 3, July 1, 2015

Here is the thing. I love birthdays. I love buying flowers, blowing up balloons, spending 5 hours baking and decorating a cake, buying the perfect gift, wrapping it Pinterest worthy and then surprising the person in question. I love all that. And I try to do that for everyone. At least family members.

The problem is fitting these celebrations has become a challenge in my budget. Not that I ever have a budget. I try to be all sophisticated and save money. But I end up using Abdullah's card on everything then. Technically that is still saving. Anyway, I was just figuring out in my head the various upcoming birthdays, welcome backs and congratulations. And it dawned upon me that I am going to end up in debt even before the month is up.

Story of my life.

I do not know why I am in love with it. But I am. And I would not have it any other way.

I didn't do much today. I went to Ikea and ended up coming back empty handed. Which is no small accomplishment, I tell you. I love Ikea. My first visit was to the one in Jeddah as a tween. I loved it back then and I still love it now. I love how you can take so many individual pieces from all across the shop and create something beautiful out of it. It is one of those shops that lets your creative side free to dance around and throw paint on the wall.

I have a weird obsession with house makeovers. It is like a guilty pleasure. Looking at different people's personality through how they decorate the room is a fascinating thing. Although, you would never know that it is my room if you looked at the one I have now. Me and Abdullah always joke that we are like a bunch of lazy laid back people who live in a grey/black/white themed room with fancy candle holders on our side tables. Its when you open our side tables and see the mess of headphones, coins, diaries, all sorts of junk that you get who occupies the room.

Sometimes I feel like my head is too big for my own good. As in, I get distracted so easily because I have another great idea. But then I am forced to be grateful for having an idea in the first place.

Adieu !



Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Day 2, June 30, 2015

1:29 pm.

I started reading Out Of The Easy by Ruta Sepetys. It is so hard to pronounce her name. I read about the book on Pretty Books blog. She is a huge fan of both of her books. And this was the one I got my hands on. So far I really like it.

It is based in New Orleans. New Orleans is such an intriguing city. I first came across it in Vampire Diaries and then the Originals because Klaus and his family are from there and the story is based on that town. It is portrayed as such a cultural city with a bit of mystery hanging in the air. And that really makes me want to visit it. Some cities are famous for their landmarks which makes people flock on it from all the over the world. But New Orleans sounds like a landmark itself. It is known for its nightlife and the flow of music.

7:25 pm

I feel much better than yesterday. Still feel a bit woozy, other than that all is well.

I was talking to Abdullah about how the past few months, I have been focused on what clothes to wear to a party, recipe to try out, family feud to sort out or celebrate some occasion. A friend made me see the intellectual person in me after getting in heated discussion. Someone who had opinions about The Stanford Prison Experiment conducted in 1960. Someone who could prove her point. Someone who loved acquiring knowledge. It is not that I don't like makeup or to get all dolled up. Its just that I like being smart much more. I like to balance a bank reconciliation.

We all perceive ourselves in different ways. Some are content with one thing while other spend their lives hunting after dozens of things. It comes down to how you want to see yourself. Do you want to be a pretty face in a friends wedding ? Or do you want to be representing a friend ? Or maybe you want to be both. Maybe you are okay being neither of the two.

11:59 pm

Just came back from polishing off a Stuffed Crust Pizza with a Berry Mohito. The traffic on the roads is insane. Its like Qatar just learnt that there is a thing called having a life. I am going to go into hibernation so I don't have to face the horrific traffic everywhere.

Good luck to everyone who still has to shop for Eid.

Adieu !


Monday, June 29, 2015

Day 1, June 29, 2015

Well, this is not how I expected to start this. But here we go. I have been neglecting my blog a lot these days and one of the reasons is that I am doing other things.

I needed someway to get a little bit of that writing spark back and keep in touch with my writing side. So I decided to start using this blog as my diary.

One of the most dreadful diseases you can suffer from is food poisoning. Let me explain why. First of all, it is no fun puking your guts out and than passing out on the bathroom floor. Staying on a comfy couch with a box of tissues and a TV remote is much better in comparison. I speak from 8 hours and continuing experience.

I have been subjected to a lot of criticism and judgement in the past 20 years. I do not give a crap about what people say about my skin colour or eyes. Things like these do not annoy me. Because from my perspective this is not in my hand. I was made like this. So I cannot change my eye colour or grow ten inches in three months.

But once in awhile you get to hear some really mean things that go straight to your heart. Last year, this friend of my mother in law's came to visit her. She was not in the wedding. So upon meeting me, she goes like,

"ye tu aapki bahu nahi hosakti. Wu tasweer wali tu ziada piyaari thi."

"This cannot be your daughter in law. The one in the picture was prettier."

OMG ! I was being compared to my own self. The struggle is real people. I laughed off her comment. But imagine my disbelief when she showed up this year and said,

 "Accha, tum abhi bhi wesi ki wesi hu."

"So you are still like you used to be ?"

This was said as a statement and I wanted to reply, "Nope, I have grown another limb and am a herbivore now."

Later I came to know that the lady in question runs a school as well as looks after her husband's various businesses in India. I felt so disappointed. If these are the kind of comments you are making, then what the hell are you teaching in your school ? Do you realise that you are shaping a  future generation. Imagine having such a teacher run a school. It is a disgrace. If that is the kind of thinking we possess then Allah has mercy on us and our generations.

Right now I sit on my bed, eating Bukhari Rice while Abdullah looks at me in contempt, waiting for that chicken to fall off my fork onto his precious pillows. Well, we cannot always have everything the way we want.

Adieu !



Tuesday, May 26, 2015

I Am My Father's Daughter

If there is one thing that I have learnt in my twenty years of life, it is that life does not turn out the way you want. And you have to learn to be okay with it. Otherwise, you just stand in the middle of the road going nowhere. 

Somehow you have to find that one essential thing in your life that makes you happy. One song, one movie, one ice cream flavour, one person to talk to etc. And stick to it. 

You have to understand that things might not go your way. They might take a slightly different path to your original destination. The routes sometimes differ because even Google earth makes mistakes. And life might take you through the longer route. You just drive a little longer and get to hear the new Imagine Dragon album. 

I stood on the spotless marble floor of Hamad Hospital for 23 days, waiting and praying that Abbu is conscious once again. I stood there for 52 days in order for him to be shifted from the dreary ICU into a less dreary general room. In that time span, I could not do anything to help him except pray. My big mouth, my confidence, my pride etc, it lay on the floor being stomped over by doctors and nurses. Because there was literally nothing any of us could do. 

Even if we were doctors, we could not help the one person who means the world to us. So you see, you are forced to be okay with it. In the grand scheme of things, somehow it makes sense going through it. 

Now, I care less about the society, petty issues and daily issues. I smile and think of that helpless moment on that cold floor. I remember my head, bowed down to Allah, praying that my dad be okay. 

Nothing else matters to me. 


How could it ? 

You see I am spoiled. Because he spoiled me. 

I have had a five star life. Because he made sure I got everything I wanted. 

I am my father's daughter. Only because he is my father.