Wednesday, January 10, 2007

~~ Who You Know ~~

.....and not about what you know and that is the sad part.

There is just no room for honesty these days. Coming across as a truthful and honest person is just not accepted anymore. Why can't a person just be him/herself with confidence and not worry about what may or could happen as a result of that. There are so many talented individuals out there that are worthy of the jobs that fit their qualifications. Not only are they diligent, but are also ambitious and dedicated towards what they do. Those are the people that put in their 110% and in the end may not even be recognized for their efforts. Then you get someone else that comes along that may hit it off with his/her manager right from the get-go and be up for a promotion in no time flat meanwhile not to mention that he/she has no related experience or knowledge of that position whatsoever. That is so unjust and unfair but it keeps on happening in some form or another no matter where one may go.
Perhaps it is human nature to be easily distracted or influenced by someone perhaps better looking in physical/outer appearance. These days books are usually judged by their covers. No one tends to see beyond that at times and that's unfortunate. At times stronger friendships are built outside of the workplace with other fellow employees,co-workers or even management that create favourtism for that individual in the end and the person that has not been interested in participating in such frivolous activities, is not even noticed regardless of whether he/she has bent over backwards for the company from the very beginning.
I could never understand that. Why would someone want to work so hard knowing that in the end that they will not even be noticed or appreciated anyway all because of the " who you know and not what you know " theory. I agree that there is a lot of talent out there and competition may be tough but the person most deserving has to be recognized as opposed to the one that just flaunts him/herself and tends to show off or is all talk and no action. And this way so many qualified and well-deserving individuals are let down every single day.
Just be truthful and fair to yourself and towards others. Recognize those that are worthy of being appreciated and valued. Those are the individuals that will do whatever it takes to succeed in the company and will allow for the company to succeed as well. I can assure you that they will not just be doing it for their own best interest. Credit should be given where credit is due and not for unknown reasons. And do also keep your eyes open as to what is going on within your surroundings. It is not always easy to do that either as some may appear to look as if they are busy all the time and want to be noticed but others that really out-do themselves and work twice as hard are ones that don't usually end up tooting their own horn. They are just quiet,down-to-earth and humble individuals that are loyal towards their work and their employers. I have also observed that these same people are genuine human beings in the real world that have nothing artificial or superficial about them but they are truly hard to find these days.
Remember the next time you decide to give someone a chance whether it be for work or for friendship, go for the real thing and not the sugar-coated one. Again just be truthful to yourself and to others always.

Have an awesome day guys and keep on smiling~!

~~ Who You Know ~~

.....and not about what you know and that is the sad part.

There is just no room for honesty these days. Coming across as a truthful and honest person is just not accepted anymore. Why can't a person just be him/herself with confidence and not worry about what may or could happen as a result of that. There are so many talented individuals out there that are worthy of the jobs that fit their qualifications. Not only are they diligent, but are also ambitious and dedicated towards what they do. Those are the people that put in their 110% and in the end may not even be recognized for their efforts. Then you get someone else that comes along that may hit it off with his/her manager right from the get-go and be up for a promotion in no time flat meanwhile not to mention that he/she has no related experience or knowledge of that position whatsoever. That is so unjust and unfair but it keeps on happening in some form or another no matter where one may go.
Perhaps it is human nature to be easily distracted or influenced by someone perhaps better looking in physical/outer appearance. These days books are usually judged by their covers. No one tends to see beyond that at times and that's unfortunate. At times stronger friendships are built outside of the workplace with other fellow employees,co-workers or even management that create favourtism for that individual in the end and the person that has not been interested in participating in such frivolous activities, is not even noticed regardless of whether he/she has bent over backwards for the company from the very beginning.
I could never understand that. Why would someone want to work so hard knowing that in the end that they will not even be noticed or appreciated anyway all because of the " who you know and not what you know " theory. I agree that there is a lot of talent out there and competition may be tough but the person most deserving has to be recognized as opposed to the one that just flaunts him/herself and tends to show off or is all talk and no action. And this way so many qualified and well-deserving individuals are let down every single day.
Just be truthful and fair to yourself and towards others. Recognize those that are worthy of being appreciated and valued. Those are the individuals that will do whatever it takes to succeed in the company and will allow for the company to succeed as well. I can assure you that they will not just be doing it for their own best interest. Credit should be given where credit is due and not for unknown reasons. And do also keep your eyes open as to what is going on within your surroundings. It is not always easy to do that either as some may appear to look as if they are busy all the time and want to be noticed but others that really out-do themselves and work twice as hard are ones that don't usually end up tooting their own horn. They are just quiet,down-to-earth and humble individuals that are loyal towards their work and their employers. I have also observed that these same people are genuine human beings in the real world that have nothing artificial or superficial about them but they are truly hard to find these days.
Remember the next time you decide to give someone a chance whether it be for work or for friendship, go for the real thing and not the sugar-coated one. Again just be truthful to yourself and to others always.

Have an awesome day guys and keep on smiling~!

~~ Who You Know ~~

.....and not about what you know and that is the sad part.

There is just no room for honesty these days. Coming across as a truthful and honest person is just not accepted anymore. Why can't a person just be him/herself with confidence and not worry about what may or could happen as a result of that. There are so many talented individuals out there that are worthy of the jobs that fit their qualifications. Not only are they diligent, but are also ambitious and dedicated towards what they do. Those are the people that put in their 110% and in the end may not even be recognized for their efforts. Then you get someone else that comes along that may hit it off with his/her manager right from the get-go and be up for a promotion in no time flat meanwhile not to mention that he/she has no related experience or knowledge of that position whatsoever. That is so unjust and unfair but it keeps on happening in some form or another no matter where one may go.
Perhaps it is human nature to be easily distracted or influenced by someone perhaps better looking in physical/outer appearance. These days books are usually judged by their covers. No one tends to see beyond that at times and that's unfortunate. At times stronger friendships are built outside of the workplace with other fellow employees,co-workers or even management that create favourtism for that individual in the end and the person that has not been interested in participating in such frivolous activities, is not even noticed regardless of whether he/she has bent over backwards for the company from the very beginning.
I could never understand that. Why would someone want to work so hard knowing that in the end that they will not even be noticed or appreciated anyway all because of the " who you know and not what you know " theory. I agree that there is a lot of talent out there and competition may be tough but the person most deserving has to be recognized as opposed to the one that just flaunts him/herself and tends to show off or is all talk and no action. And this way so many qualified and well-deserving individuals are let down every single day.
Just be truthful and fair to yourself and towards others. Recognize those that are worthy of being appreciated and valued. Those are the individuals that will do whatever it takes to succeed in the company and will allow for the company to succeed as well. I can assure you that they will not just be doing it for their own best interest. Credit should be given where credit is due and not for unknown reasons. And do also keep your eyes open as to what is going on within your surroundings. It is not always easy to do that either as some may appear to look as if they are busy all the time and want to be noticed but others that really out-do themselves and work twice as hard are ones that don't usually end up tooting their own horn. They are just quiet,down-to-earth and humble individuals that are loyal towards their work and their employers. I have also observed that these same people are genuine human beings in the real world that have nothing artificial or superficial about them but they are truly hard to find these days.
Remember the next time you decide to give someone a chance whether it be for work or for friendship, go for the real thing and not the sugar-coated one. Again just be truthful to yourself and to others always.

Have an awesome day guys and keep on smiling~!

Monday, January 08, 2007

ArZ KiYa H@i......

Dua kee Jiye.....
Aur phir Allah tallah se hamesha shukr kee jiye ke aap iss haal mein nahi hein. Aur har waqt achi baat moo se nikalthay rahay. Koi na koi garee tho hotee hee hai naa qabooliyat kee rozana. Tho humay iss cheez ko maday nazar rak kar jeena chayai hai. Agar hum achi soch ke maalik hai tho Allah tallah humare dilon ko jaantha hai aur humare niyaaton ko pechaantha bhi hai. Humara dil agar saaf nahi tho yeh bhi baat se woh anjaan nahi.
Jaha har waqt shukr guzaar honay kee baat hotee hai tho mein yeh zaroor kahoge ke insaan ko hamesha unn cheezon pe diyan aur ghaur karna chayai hai joh humare paas hai. Aur unn cheezon pe nahi joh humare paas nahi hai. Jiss cheez pe maine kal ghar athay huwe dyan diya shaid aksar log kabhi bhi na dekh kar dubara sochay.
Jaise hee mein station paunchee kal raat ko tho maine dekha ke waha karee huwe ek zaiif ( elderly ) aurat apna samaan baandkar chalthee ja rahee thee aur apnay aap se baatein kar rahee thee. Kaafi uunchee awaz mein European History ke baray mein discuss kar rahee thee apnay aap se hee. Khud se sawal ho rahay thai aur khud ko hee jawab deh rahee thee. Phir thoree dair baad koi Italian gana bhi gaana shuru kiya aur ghaathee rahee. Kisi nai kuch nahi kaha aur kisi nai kuch nahi poocha bas yehi sochkay ke kitni ajeeb cheez hai tho paas se guzar ke chalay jatay. Aur mein bahr bahr deknay pe majboor huwe aur dil mein yehi socha ke yeh sab Allah tallah kee marzi hai aur uss kee razaa hai, woh chahay tho insaan ko kya se kya baana deh aur na chahay tho kuch bhi nahi. Magar iss ke bawajood maine dua kee uss aurat ke liye aur uss ke haal pe aur apnay liye bhi ke Allah tallah humay inn cheezon se mehfooz aur dur rakay hamesha....Ameen.
Mein sochtee hoon ke agar insaan ke moo se achi baat na niklay kisi ke liye tho koi baat na karnee zyada baithaar hai. Unn cheezon kee dua na karay joh cheezain aap ke paas nahi hai, balkay unn cheezon kee dua karay joh aap ke paas hai aur shukr karthay rahay bahr bahr. Aur yeh dua karay ke Allah tallah himmat deh unn cheezon ko haasil karnay ke liye joh khud ke paas nahi. Zahir hai ke woh material hee cheezain ho sakthee hai jiss ke liye insaan aksar mehnat aur mazdoori kartha hai duniya pe magar achi sehaat, achi soch, izzat, shauraat, paisa, bacha, bimaari, aur kaafi aur cheezon se mehfooz uss kee zaat hee rak sakthee hai aur uss se dua kar ke hee lee ja sakthee hai.
Kya yeh sahee hai na? Aur har insaan itna khush naseeb nahi hota jiss ko har woh cheez milay joh doosre ke paas ho yeh joh woh chahay. Aisa kyu hota hai yeh kyu nahi hota, iss kyu kee waja hum nahi jaan sakthay par itna zaroor jaanthay hai ke har cheez kee koi na koi waja zaroor hotee hai aur humko accept karna hai jaise bhi ho aur jiss haal mein bhi ho. Aur yeh koshish karay ke hamesha apnon se neecha dekna seekhay tho dil ko zaroor tasalee milay gee. Aur saath mein yeh dua karay ke hum logon ko itni himmat deh ke hum unkee madaat kar sakay jinn ko zaroorat hai aur joh apnay madaat aap kar nahi sakthay.
Koshish yeh karay ke chahay buraa waqt ayai yeh acha, shukr karthay rahay, muskuraathay rahay aur Allah tallah kee zaat pe yakeen rakay ke agar aaj kuch sahi nahi hai tho kal zaroor ho ga.
Dil mein rakay achi soch aur achi baatein.....
Allah Hafiz

Dua kee Jiye.....
Aur phir Allah tallah se hamesha shukr kee jiye ke aap iss haal mein nahi hein. Aur har waqt achi baat moo se nikalthay rahay. Koi na koi garee tho hotee hee hai naa qabooliyat kee rozana. Tho humay iss cheez ko maday nazar rak kar jeena chayai hai. Agar hum achi soch ke maalik hai tho Allah tallah humare dilon ko jaantha hai aur humare niyaaton ko pechaantha bhi hai. Humara dil agar saaf nahi tho yeh bhi baat se woh anjaan nahi.
Jaha har waqt shukr guzaar honay kee baat hotee hai tho mein yeh zaroor kahoge ke insaan ko hamesha unn cheezon pe diyan aur ghaur karna chayai hai joh humare paas hai. Aur unn cheezon pe nahi joh humare paas nahi hai. Jiss cheez pe maine kal ghar athay huwe dyan diya shaid aksar log kabhi bhi na dekh kar dubara sochay.
Jaise hee mein station paunchee kal raat ko tho maine dekha ke waha karee huwe ek zaiif ( elderly ) aurat apna samaan baandkar chalthee ja rahee thee aur apnay aap se baatein kar rahee thee. Kaafi uunchee awaz mein European History ke baray mein discuss kar rahee thee apnay aap se hee. Khud se sawal ho rahay thai aur khud ko hee jawab deh rahee thee. Phir thoree dair baad koi Italian gana bhi gaana shuru kiya aur ghaathee rahee. Kisi nai kuch nahi kaha aur kisi nai kuch nahi poocha bas yehi sochkay ke kitni ajeeb cheez hai tho paas se guzar ke chalay jatay. Aur mein bahr bahr deknay pe majboor huwe aur dil mein yehi socha ke yeh sab Allah tallah kee marzi hai aur uss kee razaa hai, woh chahay tho insaan ko kya se kya baana deh aur na chahay tho kuch bhi nahi. Magar iss ke bawajood maine dua kee uss aurat ke liye aur uss ke haal pe aur apnay liye bhi ke Allah tallah humay inn cheezon se mehfooz aur dur rakay hamesha....Ameen.
Mein sochtee hoon ke agar insaan ke moo se achi baat na niklay kisi ke liye tho koi baat na karnee zyada baithaar hai. Unn cheezon kee dua na karay joh cheezain aap ke paas nahi hai, balkay unn cheezon kee dua karay joh aap ke paas hai aur shukr karthay rahay bahr bahr. Aur yeh dua karay ke Allah tallah himmat deh unn cheezon ko haasil karnay ke liye joh khud ke paas nahi. Zahir hai ke woh material hee cheezain ho sakthee hai jiss ke liye insaan aksar mehnat aur mazdoori kartha hai duniya pe magar achi sehaat, achi soch, izzat, shauraat, paisa, bacha, bimaari, aur kaafi aur cheezon se mehfooz uss kee zaat hee rak sakthee hai aur uss se dua kar ke hee lee ja sakthee hai.
Kya yeh sahee hai na? Aur har insaan itna khush naseeb nahi hota jiss ko har woh cheez milay joh doosre ke paas ho yeh joh woh chahay. Aisa kyu hota hai yeh kyu nahi hota, iss kyu kee waja hum nahi jaan sakthay par itna zaroor jaanthay hai ke har cheez kee koi na koi waja zaroor hotee hai aur humko accept karna hai jaise bhi ho aur jiss haal mein bhi ho. Aur yeh koshish karay ke hamesha apnon se neecha dekna seekhay tho dil ko zaroor tasalee milay gee. Aur saath mein yeh dua karay ke hum logon ko itni himmat deh ke hum unkee madaat kar sakay jinn ko zaroorat hai aur joh apnay madaat aap kar nahi sakthay.
Koshish yeh karay ke chahay buraa waqt ayai yeh acha, shukr karthay rahay, muskuraathay rahay aur Allah tallah kee zaat pe yakeen rakay ke agar aaj kuch sahi nahi hai tho kal zaroor ho ga.
Dil mein rakay achi soch aur achi baatein.....
Allah Hafiz

ArZ KiYa H@i......

Dua kee Jiye.....
Aur phir Allah tallah se hamesha shukr kee jiye ke aap iss haal mein nahi hein. Aur har waqt achi baat moo se nikalthay rahay. Koi na koi garee tho hotee hee hai naa qabooliyat kee rozana. Tho humay iss cheez ko maday nazar rak kar jeena chayai hai. Agar hum achi soch ke maalik hai tho Allah tallah humare dilon ko jaantha hai aur humare niyaaton ko pechaantha bhi hai. Humara dil agar saaf nahi tho yeh bhi baat se woh anjaan nahi.
Jaha har waqt shukr guzaar honay kee baat hotee hai tho mein yeh zaroor kahoge ke insaan ko hamesha unn cheezon pe diyan aur ghaur karna chayai hai joh humare paas hai. Aur unn cheezon pe nahi joh humare paas nahi hai. Jiss cheez pe maine kal ghar athay huwe dyan diya shaid aksar log kabhi bhi na dekh kar dubara sochay.
Jaise hee mein station paunchee kal raat ko tho maine dekha ke waha karee huwe ek zaiif ( elderly ) aurat apna samaan baandkar chalthee ja rahee thee aur apnay aap se baatein kar rahee thee. Kaafi uunchee awaz mein European History ke baray mein discuss kar rahee thee apnay aap se hee. Khud se sawal ho rahay thai aur khud ko hee jawab deh rahee thee. Phir thoree dair baad koi Italian gana bhi gaana shuru kiya aur ghaathee rahee. Kisi nai kuch nahi kaha aur kisi nai kuch nahi poocha bas yehi sochkay ke kitni ajeeb cheez hai tho paas se guzar ke chalay jatay. Aur mein bahr bahr deknay pe majboor huwe aur dil mein yehi socha ke yeh sab Allah tallah kee marzi hai aur uss kee razaa hai, woh chahay tho insaan ko kya se kya baana deh aur na chahay tho kuch bhi nahi. Magar iss ke bawajood maine dua kee uss aurat ke liye aur uss ke haal pe aur apnay liye bhi ke Allah tallah humay inn cheezon se mehfooz aur dur rakay hamesha....Ameen.
Mein sochtee hoon ke agar insaan ke moo se achi baat na niklay kisi ke liye tho koi baat na karnee zyada baithaar hai. Unn cheezon kee dua na karay joh cheezain aap ke paas nahi hai, balkay unn cheezon kee dua karay joh aap ke paas hai aur shukr karthay rahay bahr bahr. Aur yeh dua karay ke Allah tallah himmat deh unn cheezon ko haasil karnay ke liye joh khud ke paas nahi. Zahir hai ke woh material hee cheezain ho sakthee hai jiss ke liye insaan aksar mehnat aur mazdoori kartha hai duniya pe magar achi sehaat, achi soch, izzat, shauraat, paisa, bacha, bimaari, aur kaafi aur cheezon se mehfooz uss kee zaat hee rak sakthee hai aur uss se dua kar ke hee lee ja sakthee hai.
Kya yeh sahee hai na? Aur har insaan itna khush naseeb nahi hota jiss ko har woh cheez milay joh doosre ke paas ho yeh joh woh chahay. Aisa kyu hota hai yeh kyu nahi hota, iss kyu kee waja hum nahi jaan sakthay par itna zaroor jaanthay hai ke har cheez kee koi na koi waja zaroor hotee hai aur humko accept karna hai jaise bhi ho aur jiss haal mein bhi ho. Aur yeh koshish karay ke hamesha apnon se neecha dekna seekhay tho dil ko zaroor tasalee milay gee. Aur saath mein yeh dua karay ke hum logon ko itni himmat deh ke hum unkee madaat kar sakay jinn ko zaroorat hai aur joh apnay madaat aap kar nahi sakthay.
Koshish yeh karay ke chahay buraa waqt ayai yeh acha, shukr karthay rahay, muskuraathay rahay aur Allah tallah kee zaat pe yakeen rakay ke agar aaj kuch sahi nahi hai tho kal zaroor ho ga.
Dil mein rakay achi soch aur achi baatein.....
Allah Hafiz

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

!~~ The KC Experience ~~!

Today I was actually just thinking about how quick the years have gone by. I have to admit I had some crazy days in my life when I think back especially to my college days. The ones that stick out in my mind as being totally crazy and a real first time experience was the one that was of Kinnaird College back in 1991. I had spent 2 yrs. of my life there when my family had decided on the big move from Canada to Pakistan. Now going from attending a co-ed high school life to an All-Girls college in Pakistan was like day and night. It seemed like a totally different world.
From the environment and climate being so different to getting used to the types of personalities that I had, had the pleasure of meeting in college interestingly enough made every experience a unique one. There were so many things that I had not known before of when I attended college in Pakistan and had to adjust to a new lifestyle there for the first time in my life. I really did not know what I was in for and was not forewarned or mentally prepared. Everything was so new to me. The syllabus that we always called curriculum, the canteen that was known to me as a cafeteria, NCC which I had never even heard of and the list would go on. When I actually think back now to how I got through the 1st and 2nd year just makes me laugh.
First Day of College Life In Lahore
I really did not know what to expect. I felt really nervous and very uptight while walking through the halls the very first day. I didn't really know what types of girls I would meet and become friends with. I had been coming from an atmosphere where everyone meant what they said and others' feelings were given much importance and attention but here I did not know that I had to read between the lines and one comment could have more than one meaning but I learned and learned the hard way indeed. Perhaps I learned to become ' one of them ' and then I would have the chance to fit in just fine.
My first class happened to be math the very first day. I could not help but notice a girl sitting next to me that had actually looked over at my clothes and then looked up at me finally and smiled. Right away I thought, this girl seems friendly so I just smiled back hoping she would ask me a question and that way we could start up a conversation. So she ended up asking me a few things and then right after that she just dived right in to ask the question whether my suit (shalwar kameez) was my mother's or if it was an old one. I was appauled and really confused thinking she had the nerve and guts to ask me such a thing. My mouth was just wide open at that point and I was a bit angry as well but I did not tend to show such feelings. But I was astonished that she would ask me something like that especially when we had just met for the first time. She offered to have me join her group of friends and meet all of them after class was over. I accepted the offer not knowing what I was really in for. When math class was over she has already left rather abruptly without saying a word. The next day when I went to college I did not even get a hello or how are you from this same girl. She didn't even look in my direction which was again very surprising for me but I had to just leave it at that.
The Canteen Episode
Now the word ' canteen' was new terminology for me. A word I had not come across while attending high school in Canada up until this day. I was always used to the word ' cafeteria' which was always indoors and we had to stand in single file to order and purchase our snacks and lunches. There was never any havoc or noise while the students waited patiently to order their food. Well my second day's experience in college at the 'canteen' was a rather funny and memorable one. Again not knowing what to expect, I had mentally prepared myself to buy my lunch that day. Not only was I unaware of where the canteen was located in the college but to my horror, I did not realize that there would be no concept of a line in which all the girls would be standing to place their orders turn by turn and that there would be a real uproar. This scene from a distance now as I visualize it in my head was as if there were crazy, die-hard fans pushing and shoving each other just to get tickets to go see a popular rock band performing live. In any event, I still decided to attempt to wait in this virtual line that I had formed in my mind thinking that my turn would eventually come. But I should have thought again when I ended up standing in that same line that did not seem to move an inch throughout the whole lunch hour and had to go back to my afternoon classes on an empty stomach. It did not work out as I planned unfortunately and on my way home that day I was forced to think up another plan to buy some lunch that would actually work in my favour.
So after regaining some courage this time, I planned to do things a bit differently. As lunchtime rolled around the next day, I followed the hoard of girls in the direction of the canteen once again. Now this time I promised myself there would be no standing around and waiting for ' my turn' which was non-existent. So I decided to use a ' Rafia style' this time. As I closed my eyes, I moved quickly through the rough crowd elbowing everyone out of the way. Yessss, I made it. I could buy my lunch now and I had to scream my order out at the top of my lungs because all one could hear was all these girls calling out at once, " Chaudhary saab Chaudhary saab, ek naan dho samosay deh diye jee naa jaldi se ". Now poor Chaudhary saab had to listen to this for at least 2 hours consecutively every single day. I felt so sorry for him because all the girls would be yelling out their orders at the same time and how was this poor old man to remember all of their orders at the same time. He just kept repeating " acha bachay koi baat nahi mil jayega ". It was merely impossible for this man who seemed over the age of 60 at least and looked as if he was going to pass out any minute now. But the most important thing for me that day was to obtain my lunch somehow. And the mission was accomplished but I did not order the naan and the samosay. What a disgusting and dry combination. I wondered how these girls swallowed that and actually enjoyed it. Then that very day when I came back home from college I ended up sharing this story with my mom and cousin and we just had a good laugh about what I ended up doing to solve this problem that would never be a problem for me again. I was proud of myself for doing what I did as I still kept laughing about the whole ordeal.
An Interesting Personality
By now a few months had elapsed and I had gotten into the swing of things. I ended up meeting and making some good friendships which I am in contact with even till today. I must admit that there were always going to be some very different individuals that I would come across and had to just accept the way they were. I had come across Jamila, a very sweet girl with whom I had a lot in common I found. She had moved to Lahore from Kuwait and was also used to a totally different lifestyle back there and because of having so many things in common our personalities clicked right away. I think we had a blast just sitting around college and sharing funny stories, making fun of some girls that were attention-seekers and all decked out for college and sometimes this laughter had no real reason behind it. It was just relaxing to sit around and pass the time some days. But I must admit that every day was unconventional.
Now there was usually a crowd of men waiting outside of the entrance/exit gate every single day looking in to find and locate their sisters, daughters or perhaps wives in order to take them home. One day Jamila and I were just standing having a casual conversation by the gate as we were waiting to be picked up to head home. All of a sudden we were rudely interrupted by another college girl that happen to directly come up to us and request that we move out of her way so that she could stare or smile more closely at the people on the other side of the gate. I still remember her exact words because whenever Jamila and I recall that day we laugh so hard about it and the way she said, " excuse me aap zara peechay haat jayege, maine bhi duniya deknee hai". So after that day, Jamila and I called her " Duniya " and we would warn each other by saying " Peechay haat jao woh Duniya ah rahee hai ". Wow, what a character she was :)
It feels like I was in college yesterday when I think back to all of these incidents. These days just came and went so fast that it actually all feels like a dream sometimes.
But nonetheless, those 2 yrs. spent at Kinnaird College in Pakistan changed and taught me so much as a person and that's surely something that I will never forget.

A Few Words

Looking Good...Feeling Fine

I think that looking good has a lot to do with feeling good about yourself and about others. I always knew that the first impression is the last impression that one creates before others which is ever so true and I still believe in that.
Unfortunately the world we live in is a place where people make a lot of assumptions and sometimes it is just the assumptions we have to go by to bring ourselves to conclusions and knowing that it is just not fair but that is just the way it is in today's society. We really don't have a lot of free time to analyze a person's character inside and out so we have to just take and accept what we get.
When I think back about 3 or 4 years ago, I remember a colleague of mine that used to work with me at the time. She was quite a character. I remember how we used to indulge in many various topics of discussion while at work that included Islamic discussions and what we should do or should not do in accordance with the Qur'aan and Sunnah. Now because she was very opinionated it was never so easy to converse with her or easy to convince her. We would often end up in an argument or disagreement and at times just laugh if off and move forward.
It was often that she used to complain about how her husband was a taxi driver and he would have to work all sorts of crazy hours in the day and in the night to make ends meet and how things were getting very complicated for her to continue to work especially when there was no one to watch over her little children. I used to tell her to quit and spend more and more time at home with the kids so that they could get the undivided attention that they always longed for and deserved. I always told her that it was her fault for neglecting them and being selfish especially if this second income of hers was not necessary to be made at this point. I was sure that one day she would realize what she was doing and just quit her job for the time being, just until the kids got enrolled in school full-time and then to reconsider the working industry if it was absolutely necessary at the time.
I recall one day she came to work and was practically in tears while speaking to me and I couldn't help but ask what had happened. She said that her husband had been ignoring her for the past few months and last night he started raising his voice with her for no apparent reason saying that she was irresponsible, disrespectful and unorganized. He also continued to tell her that even the secretary at his workplace was looking so professional and sharp with her makeup and all. " Today, she was wearing a nice jacket and skirt outfit with long black heels and on the other hand just look at what I had to come home to after such a long, tiring day. Why did you have to wear the same outfit with dried up baby cereal stuck to it the entire day. You didn't even change your clothes, shower or put any makeup on your face. That is such a turn off for me ", he explained.
Then we talked about this entire situation and I had been completely honest with her and told her that even in Islam it was imperative that we took care of ourselves and our health on a daily basis. I even told her that in Islam, we were obligated to look decent and presentable to our husbands even if she wore hijab it still did not matter. I explained to her as well that if she continued this way, the arguments and disputes would not come to a halt and her and her husband would always be at each others' throats for no real reasons at all. So one day I had advised her once and for all that she should start applying some makeup, brush up her hair and wear some nice looking clothes before he would come back home at the end of the day, everyday.
At first it did not seem that she was liking what I was telling her however when I did explain the reasons why she needed to do all this for him, she finally realized. I did also forewarn her that if she did not change anytime soon then he would lose interest in her and would sidetrack very easily. Finally she decided to take my advice seriously. I started to see a pleasant change in her day by day and it was rather nice. Her face began to glow and she even admitted that she needed to spend more time at home with her family now and that work was just getting in the way and causing too much stress for her and her loved ones.
Then after about 2 wks. had lapsed she approached me in the office with this big smile on her face and while looking straight at me she said " Rafia, I want to thank you so much for all the advice that you had given me a few weeks ago regarding my overall appearance. I went home and realized that you were right and I had to change and had to change fast otherwise I may have lost my husband for good". She said that everything you said really worked and I feel so good not only on the outside but on the inside just as well. At this moment I was extremely overjoyed and thanked God for allowing me the opportunity to help someone out for the better. This feeling was truly rewarding and it certainly made my day.
So just a message for all of you out there and that is no matter what the circumstances may be, try your best to always look your best. It doesn't have to be that one has to dress well or wear make-up only when leaving your home. You can still dress well and look sharp for yourself and or your husband at home. I assure you that by doing this regularly you will begin to feel very confident and good about yourself and it will show.
And last but not least, always wear a big, bright smile on your face as those are contagious

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

A Few Words

Straight From The Heart
Sometimes it is so hard to stick to something and just keep going with it. There are times in my life that I become so bored from the everyday and conventional methods of doing things. I am sure that I am not the only one that is sailing in this boat. I am positive that there are many people out there that feel the same way. Sometimes I think is it is truly that consistency and routine that is the secret of many peoples' success. Or is it that risk taking factor that one must have in order to be innovative and creative at the same time in order to be successful. But doesn't life become monotonous when one has to do the same things the same way every single, solitary day. Now even the thought of that just bores me out !
I don't know if it is a part of our personality or character to be a certain way. Some people are just born with certain traits and some are just plain lucky. I think a lot has to do with hardwork and dedication. The idea of consistency and diligency has never failed. I have always noticed that whenever I have put my mind to something, I have always succeeded even if I have not exceeded. On the other hand, whenever I have procrastinated I have set myself up for failure and for utter laziness I have never gotten what I have truly wanted in life. I have been able to settle with what I have gotten but have never really gotten what I have really or truly wanted from the core of my heart. And honestly, there has never been anyone to blame for that other than myself.
I honestly believe that talk is cheap. One can talk and talk and talk all he or she wants but at the end of the day, real success has come to those who have been always able to practice what they preach and the ones who have always been able to walk the walk and talk the talk. To actually put words into action is the hardest thing to do without having second thoughts or becoming distracted with what could happen or what might happen. As people living in society, we can even become our own worst enemies at times and set ourselves back before we can even move forward and that is the most interesting part.
As I spoke to a good friend recently, we agreed that one has to be up to trying different things and being creative in order to attain some results at times however keeping at it has been the key to success as always. Again the idea of " my daily routine" has always been the driving factor for most of us to get what we wanted out of life. Yet I still find that very difficult as I become bored of doing the same thing every single day for too long of a period. The funny thing is that I am not one that is up for a challenge either. I can get cozy doing one thing for sometime but unfortunately that is not what success is all about nowadays. One has to be a go-getter, a self motivator and to be able to take initiative without having to think twice or thrice about it.
I think if one puts his/her mind to something with real dedication and honesty, it is even possible to achieve the impossible. As I had indulged into a conversation with another one of my friends not too long ago, she said to me that we may think that we have so much on our plate to handle on a particular day or in a particular week, however God never gives us more than what he knows we will be able to handle. And I thought to myself, wow that is so true if one seriously thinks about it. I find that nothing in life comes to us if we just sit there and wait for it and or make no effort on our part at all to get it. The feeling of earning something after a hard day's work is a feeling like no other and incomparable to anything out there no matter how small or large it is in quantity. The fact remains that you worked hard for it and that's all that matters.
I hate to have to come face to face with too many hurdles or challenges in life to attain something I really want, but in actual fact when we have to face these uncertain and unfavourable situations, it is not only a test from God of our patience but it is also a message that tells us that nothing in life is easy. If it is then it will be " Easy Come, Easy Go". A colleague of mine recently was discussing with me how he wanted to quit his job by the time he reaches the age of 41 and wants to invest in the buying and selling of shares full time rather than part time that he is into now. I thought long and hard for a moment on that and thought to myself that, that is so easy. Why wouldn't everyone just want to quit their full time jobs and just earn a living doing that and try to pray that one can make some good money without losing out on too much but one has to have enough to lose in the first place. Do we really want to throw away our hard earned money down the drain like that. Not only has that become an addiction for some, but it has costed people too much by indulging in such activities on a daily basis.
Why not do something in which a person feels rewarded. Maybe some sort of community work or work that involves helping others in life or perhaps making a difference in their lives of some sort. That to me is self-rewarding right there. It is easy to be selfish and say " I want this and I want that" but how easy is it to be selfless. How easy is it to think of others before us. Not that easy at all actually. People have become too materialistic in life's approaches to even think of putting others before them, not even their own relatives at times. There seems to be a competition amongst " us " to try to attain more and more of what we can, while we can. But the more I think about what we do and how much time we invest in such petty things, the more I say to myself " at the end of the day, is this strive and pain really worth it and what will really matter in the end anyway " ?
Have yourselves a wonderful day and try to make each day count as this thought comes straight from my heart today and always.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

~~ The Way Things Were ~~

Dedicated to my late khala ( aunt ) Salma Amin Malik who passed away June 22, 2004


When we long to hear that voice again, it never comes back. When we want to feel that person close to us, they never return. The very thought that exists in our minds is that, what was it that we could have said or forgot to say? Did we leave things unsaid, untold? Could things have been done differently when they were alive? When we lose those who are near and dear to us only then we tend to realize the value of their presence, only when they are gone. We realize their importance and how they made a difference in our lives whether it is in a very small or very big way, it’s that very difference.
As tears roll down my cheeks, I reminisce about that very last telephone conversation with my aunt only two weeks before she passed away.

She was happy, anxious and so full of life yet so innocent and unaware of the inevitable. She spoke as excitedly as she explained how she couldn’t wait for us to come to Pakistan so she could see all of us again. There was so much loving in her voice that it’s hard to digest the fact that she has left this world behind. My grandmother still yearns for her loss. She questions everyone as to why Allah tallah decided to take her daughter first and why she has been still left to live, why Allah (swt) has decided to prolong her living years, for which no one knows the answers to and no one dares to question.
As I hold a shawl she made as a gift close to me, I think of those very words she said with a sheepish smile on her face, “ pata nahee tumhe pasand ayege ke nahee, maine apnay haathon se banai hai tumare liye, iss ke saath namaz para karna “ …….. unable to control my tears at this very moment, I want to tell her what this shawl means to me, but now I can’t.

It’s unbelievable how fast the days pass us. How such little things can make such a difference and how certain people can impact our lives in the smallest ways. The people that we may not give so much importance or attention to, tend to leave such everlasting impressions in our hearts and permanent footprints in our lives. I think that as individuals we should never take for granted even the most short-lived experiences that come our way. I believe that there is always a reason for everything, how or why things happen the way they do, why we meet certain people, we will never know at that very instant but we do tend to understand at a later point in time, but by then it may be too late.

Whenever we made our trips to Pakistan every few years, we always had a mindset of seeing everything a certain way. I can still visualize my aunt sitting the way she sat to eat, to read, to rest and to sleep and even that has changed. So much has changed already. It seems as if there is nothing to look forward to now. The trip is already beginning to feel so incomplete, so empty and this feeling doesn’t seem to fade.

As our elder and wiser generations leave this world one by one, year after year, things will be different and a lot will change. It’s with their duas and blessings we are where we are today, and who we are today. We owe them more than words can say. Today, some may disagree with my thoughts. but a day will come when they will not. In life, we go through so much joy, happiness, laughter, sorrow, tears, pain, suffering, etc…we strive so much to gain this, gain that, to buy this, buy that, to become what we have dreamt of becoming, for some even greed is a curse, the more they have, the less it is. Some people just do certain things to compete or please others. But in the end, I question myself is this struggle all worth it? Trying not to sound pessimistic, but just emotionally speaking from my heart, but whatever we strive for should be for self-achievement and not to prove ourselves to others.

Life is not about all that. Life is a gift that should be lived in a beautiful yet simple way. We have been given this chance in life to prove ourselves not to others but to Allah (swt ), to please only Allah (swt ) for whom things seem to matter. It’s really the smallest things that make a difference and it’s up to us to make that difference in which ever way we can.

After my father expired over two yrs. ago, I had a motto set in mind, which was Live/ Love/ Laugh…..Life Is Too Short! And in this motto, I now believe even more strongly than ever before because that is what life is really about.

I miss my aunt terribly and think of her all the time. I know that her absence will be felt by many others in the family. In time, by being in Pakistan amongst all our family members, we shall be able to lessen our sadness and remember those good times that we had spent with her over the past years, which will in turn hopefully enlighten our hearts a little. I will never forget the goodness in her and the way she treated others because that is what mattered. May Allah (swt) grant her a place in jaanat-ul-ferdous where her soul may rest in peace and tranquility Inshallah.

Ameen

~~ The " Noble " Deeds Prize ~~



One of my dearest and closest friend and coworker shared this true incident with me the other day for which I could not resist to share it with all of you today.

By the way, has anyone ever stopped to wonder why is it in life that our good deeds are always overlooked and our bad deeds are always in the spotlight. It is very rare that one will remember that good “ thing” you did for them in their life but once one bad incident happens, an enormous issue is made out of it instanteously. It is quite interesting how that never fails to happen to us every so often. C’est la vie, n’est-ce pas? ( That’s life, right?)

So as I may proceed to continue with the incident, I do also want us to keep in mind that if there is anything good that we are doing out there, it is not for anyone in particular. It is for ourselves and that goodness that we carry out, will give us peace of heart and mind. It is God that knows what is in our hearts at all times and these things never go unnoticed and I truly and honestly believe that.

It so happens that one mid-afternoon last July, my friend had received a call from a passionate though frustrated customer. Now mind you, she had happened to be quite an elderly lady in her late 80’s. She had started her conversation that day yelling, screaming and cursing at the top of her lungs however my friend stayed calm. I was surprised at her reaction after she had told me this. After a few minutes the lady started crying on the phone. Abviously very astonished at this point my friend had naturally wanted to know what was wrong. She went on to explain to her how she had 3 sons that had been married off and had left her behind. They had not looked back at her once or even had called to check up on her once in a while just to see how she was doing. Last week, she had claimed that she had slipped and fallen in her bathtub while taking a bath and had managed to break her hip and could not get out of the tub. She had apparently spent 3 days in the tub just surviving on water only because she could not get herself out and none of her 3 sons had even made a courtesy call to their mom to check on her well-being and health. She was totally helpless that day.
After approx. 3 days, her landlord had noticed she had not come down to check her mailbox in the apartment building, which had forced him to go up to check on her. As he was ready to knock on her door, he heard cries of help coming from inside the apartment.
She had spent almost a week in the hospital recovering from this ordeal. The aftermath of this mishap left a bad taste in her mouth for her inconsiderate sons.

Apparently, my friend claimed that she had wanted to talk things out on the phone only also because she was so lonely and no one cared for her hence this incident that had happened, left her even more fearful of her health. She had asked for a promise from my friend. She had asked if my friend would be able to do her a favour and call her every Saturday just for a few minutes just to make sure that she was ok and whether all was alright. My friend agreed and took upon her shoulders the responsibility to call her every Saturday, which she had consistently done for 8 months straight.

Until one day, my friend had gotten a call from one of her sons from the elderly lady’s lawyer’s office. They had asked her to drop by for a few minutes that day so she agreed on doing so. When she got there, she had learned that the elderly lady had died only a week before and left my friend’s name and contact # in her diary for the reason they were able to trace my friend and call her in. Not only did my friend have to bear the bad news which made her come home and sob uncontrollably, but to her surprise she had left my friend with $200 and a thank you card for all my friend had done for her. Which was just a simple few minutes call every Saturday. Even I had become emotional and tears had filled my eyes when my friend had told me this story. I was so surprised at the good deed and gesture my friend had put forth by just lending a hand to her and acknowledging her presence as a human being.

After my friend had shared this with me, my respect has risen for her tenfold. I admire her for her “ Noble Deed ” that she carried forth just to make the elderly lady’s last days all the more merrier and it cost nothing other than a few minutes of her Saturdays.

Today, I must say that by sharing this story with you all, I have given praise and credit where credit was due.

I think that after learning about this incident, I am sure it would make you want to do something good for someone out there just for the sake of doing so. I am a strong believer in the saying that goes, “ What Goes Around Comes Around”. If we take care and do good for others, we will certainly have good done upon us one day or another. We must always keep that in mind.

Knowing Your Strength

We never know what we are really good at until someone comes along and points it out. As we all know that each and everyone of us is gifted with at least one talent if not more. We may not have realized it until a substantiall amount of time has passed us by.

At this time, I am sure many of us are in jobs or careers that we are not fully satisfied or content with. Perhaps there are other hidden talents that we, as individuals possess however are afraid to come to terms with or unable to bring them forward due to personal or financial reasons. It could be that our families or loved ones do not want to support those ideas or talents that we may have only because they fear that the direction chosen may not be one of the best ways to go.

But by keeping ourselves back from realizing our dreams and goals and by not bringing to the forefront those hidden talents, how much we could actually be losing out on and not be knowing so. I think that time shall not be wasted. With our strong will, diligence and determination we can certainly meet those goals that we have been after for so long. Sometimes I feel that it is just a matter of time. As many say, that there is always a right time and place for everything and that surely holds true. Although patience is still a virtue and all good things come with time, but due efforts have to be made to see the gains.

I must say that writing was always one of my passions. I always wrote and expressed what I deeply felt for. I have never limited myself to a certain genre, theme or topic. Ideas to write about have always just popped into my mind that were affected by my surroundings and seen circumstances or just what my heart felt strongly about, I would then just decide to write. I did not realize that my writings actually interested people out there and were even enjoyed until I became a member of FriendsMailz. I must say that I owe a lot to FriendsMailz and many of those members out there that have always encouraged myself and others to keep writing and keep posting contributions because they are so valuable and that they always look forward to reading them.

From these kind gestures, I allowed myself to move forward and explore other avenues in life that may have been able to help me succeed with my consistent writings. About 3 months ago, I had went ahead and contacted 2 local newspaper editors to which I had personally spoken to and submitted my work. I must admit that the honest feedback in regards to these writings of mine did seem to rather set things back for me somewhat. I realized how much hardwork, devotion and time I would need to invest in my passion in order to reach heights of success.
You know today I am glad I did what I did 3 months ago and with the feedback I got, it made me think that if I had not taken the chance or risk, I would never have known what the outcome would have been regardless of positive or negative. Personally, I feel that time is too precious to be wasted on people or things that do not matter much in one's life. One should pursue that dream or goal to gain full contentment and satisfaction in life by doing what one would love to do most. We may not be realizing the doors to success may just be steps away but it may be a shame that those steps are just not being taken therefore our strengths may always remain unknown to us. Is that what we want? What if it is too late and we have allowed years to just pass us by, how will we rewind back that time in order to fulfill those dreams and passions. Do not procrasinate and do not let it be too late.


Finally, some more words of wisdom by Mother Theresa:
"Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin."

Sunday, April 03, 2005

*** FOOTPRINTS ***

One night a man had a dream. He dreamed he was walking along the beach with God. Across the sky flashing scenes from his life. For each scene, he noticed two sets of footprints in the sand; one belonged to him, and the other to God.

When the last scene of his life flashed before him, he looked back at the footprints in the sand. He noticed that many times along the path of his life there was only one set of footprints. He also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in his life.

This really bothered him and he questioned God about it. “ God, you said that once I decided to follow you, you’d walk with me all the way. But I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, there is only one set of footprints. I don’t understand why when I needed you most you would leave me.”

God replied, “ My precious, precious child, I love you and I would never leave you. During your times of trial and suffering, when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.”

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

~~ That Day...~~

( Dedicated to my late father 1941- 2001 )


Still brings tears to my eyes.

How could everything end so quickly. How could life move on with such momentum. Was it just a dream that faded away with time. The more I sit here and reminisce about that day, the more weak I feel at the knees. I just cannot control the tears that roll down my cheeks one by one as I recall this day and write all about it today after almost 3 1/2 years have gone by since it happened.

My father's death will never be easy for me to overcome. Why did we have to live through Friday, August 24, 2001 the way we did. It is one thing that just hit me so hard and left a void in my life. An eternal void that I often remember and sit in solitude and cry. I could never forget those days and how my father taught me how to walk as he held my little fingers when I was a toddler. Those times when he stayed awake all night long just holding me in his arms as a baby when I could not sleep. He made me smile and he made me cry. How will I ever forget those good and bad moments in my life that he left for me to now remember him by?

Sometimes I feel that he left with so much unsaid and so much unheard. I don't even know if I got a chance to say all the things I wanted to say to him. The funny thing is, is that he never discussed death. The word " Death" never even came up in light or serious conversations. My father loved life. He loved spending quality time with his family and preferred to usually spend time at home rather than outdoors.

Born January 7, 1941 , my father was a Capricorn. A strong, courageous, patient, wise and intelligent man but yet so soft-centered and over-sensitive. I don't think I will ever meet someone who never ever held a grudge against anyone for too long. He always said what he felt to you and I, whether it sounded good or bad. His heart was so pure and clear as water.

I wish I could reverse some time. Do things a little differently and perhaps been able to spend more time with him that I wish and feel like doing now. When my father was amongst us all, he took care of everything. Sometimes he would explain certain things and what the reasons were for doing them but we never paid attention. Perhaps the only thing we ever knew was that he is around and will just keep taking care of everything till finally that day came when he just left us. Just like that. Sometimes I wish we had known more of what was in his heart. I wish we had asked him what he was feeling or thinking. I remember one day when I walked slowly into his room to ask him about something and it was the first time in my life that I had ever seen him look up at me ever so emotionally and cry as if he were a little child that just fell down and hurt himself. It was so strange but yet so scary for me. I did not know what to say or what to do because it was him that always looked after us and comforted us when we were in pain. It really hurts the more I think about it.

They say good people are always the first to go. Is this life too harsh for them? Sometimes I think my father was too innocent to be living a part of this life. At times his talk was so cute when he did not know what type of music was in or what type of trends were in. My mother and sisters would always laugh at him and make jokes and instead of getting upset he would just laugh along with us. I miss that. I really miss that.

How could I forget the days when I used to have a collection of unique erasers ( rubbers) at home and my mom would never give my hobby any importance because she would just think collecting erasers was a waste of time. But for my father, at times my happiness was what satisfied him the most. I almost always got my way with him. And that night, he took me to the corner store and allowed me to buy my favourite eraser so that I could add it to my collection. Such small things like that made memories for me.

I wish life had a rewind button to get back the good times, a forward button to erase the bad times and a pause button to hold on to all the special moments in our lives.

I remember when I wanted my first portable walkman (radio) and my father said, “ Don’t worry I will buy it for you” and he always meant what he said. His promises were 100%.
Then when I entered high school, he promised that I would get my very own AM/FM cassette tape recorder. It was the first of its kind and I was ecstatic when I got it. It was my 14th birthday present. And after 15 years, I am still using that same present today. I still want to say thank you to him for all he did for me and for the family. He always watched over us with so much loving and caring but yet never showed it although we knew it was there. We knew it existed.

I finally managed to meet my longterm goal. I recently managed to get my drivers’ license on Feb.15/05 after procrastinating for many many years. Today I wish my father was here so that I could share with him the my joyous news. I know he would have been so proud and would have given me a long lecture about good driving habits especially when he had such a clean driving record that he held for over 30 years. My wish from God will be to allow me to take after him and always be a patient and safe driver as he was.

My father had passion for singing, photography and reading. He always believed that knowledge was a powerful tool and he always lead the conversations at family gatherings as others looked on and praised his knowledge and wisedom. I think that my passions seem to compliment his as far as singing and appreciating good music go, as well as an interest for photography. To achieve the knowledge he possessed would be something I will always long for and pray to God for. As it is a special gift from God.

There were times when my father and I would poke fun at my mother’s English skills as she would always defend herself and state how much she despised Engligh. My dad would look at me and laugh while he would tell me how many times mom would keep adding “ the “ in front of peoples’ names. His laughter still echoes in my ears as I long to hear it again. But I know this is one wish that can never be granted for as long as I shall live.

Then came Friday, August 17, 2001, my father’s life changed so fast when he suffered a minor heart attack. Upon my arrival back from Detroit that day, only was it then that I learned that he had been rushed to the doctor and then to the hospital right away. He spent one long week in the hospital. That week would have been the longest week of his entire life. I had never seen him so agitated with his family, with life and with himself. It made me think that night how a heart attack could affect a person’s life in such a way that it did. It killed me to see my father like this. A man, in my eyes that was so courageous and determined, he could face up to anyone and anything. But today, he was as dependent and helpless as a newborn baby.

Then came Friday, August 24, 2001, as evening rolled around I sat quietly at work caught up in my own world. All of a sudden, my sister arrived to pick me up. I knew something was wrong as soon as I saw the look on her face and a tear roll down her cheek. I was trembling with fear as I asked what was happening and she answered by saying that our father was on life support. For a mere moment, it was like I couldn’t breathe but tried to keep both of us calm and collected. I think that night would have been the longest drive of our lives. The distance would not end. Our anxiety and nervousness were building up and had reached heights that were unspeakable of. At one point, the confusion made us realize we had been travelling towards the wrong direction while trying to frantically get ourselves to the hospital as soon as possible.

Upon finally reaching the hospital parking lot, the elevator took us up to the floor we needed to get to. The hospital air was already filled with a melancholic mood. It was a living nightmare walking down the quiet and empty hallways. It was pin drop silence. As we approached the visiting room, we stood outside the door for a split second. I thought I overheard sounds of cries and as if someone were gasping for air. When I opened the door, all I saw was a white sheet covering the body. The next moment I realized I had fallen at my father’s feet screaming and repeating, “ No this can’t be happening…it can’t be happening”…But it was too late for questions and too late for everything else now.

My father had left us. FOREVER!

*** My God grant him the highest level of paradise and inturn may God grant us the highest degree of patience and perserverence to continue to live our lives today and always! ***