Thursday, 11 December 2014

Healing in Hell.

was very beautiful. Well, at least Mama said I was. My tamed, curly, thick, black hair. My green, almond shaped eyes, complimented by thick, spider leg-like lashes. My rosy, plump cheeks, which I always wished to lose weight off, as every teenage girl would do so. Whenever I took a glance at myself in the mirror, I longed to lose a bit of this, a bit of that, or gain a bit of this or a bit of that. I considered myself imperfectly perfect. I wish I never did.

-

14th January 1934. 9:27am. The day I gained a piece of me but consequently lost a whole of me.

-

God blessed me with a daughter. Wallah, she was so beautiful, the spitting image of me when I was younger, as I had seen in one of the 3 early photographs there were of me.
I came from a poor family of 9. We could barely afford to feed ourselves. These photographs, however, were the only memories I had of my family. They were given to me as a present from my Uncle Iqbal. He was a rich businessman. Now that I'm in Tehran, I am not permitted to meet my family. Mostafa cannot afford it at the moment, thus I'm confined within these 4 walls. My parents got me married last year, as I was the eldest of 8 daughters. I had finally turned 16. “Once a girl turns 16, it is her mother’s moral obligation to make sure she is married.” The amount of times I heard that was unbelievable. So here I am, my photographs and I.

-

“You Harami! How dare you? I told you I wanted a son! What will I do with her? I swear to God, I know she will go courting with every other man. Like mother, like daughter.”

Bewildered. This was the first argument that Mostafa and I had gotten into. Aggravated. I was unable to comprehend why Mostafa would accuse me in such a demeaning manner. What had I ever done? I suddenly felt beads of warm water trickling down my cheeks.

“I’m leaving. This shouldn’t be here when I get home, or there shall be consequences. Be wary.”

-

14th January 1934. 11:24pm. I wasn’t expecting this.

-

“Mostafa, what time do you call this? Allah has blessed us with a daughter, why are you behaving this way? Be grateful to the almighty Mostafa, or you’ll regret it. Don’t play with fate.” At this point I was bawling. I had never spoken to anyone in this manner before.

Mostafa slowly gazed up. I couldn’t quite make out what he was saying, his speech was slurring. His pace, slow, staggering. His eyes were bloodshot red. His nostrils, flaring; an overpowering stench of cheap booze assaulted my nostrils. That wasn’t the only thing that assaulted me that night, however.

Mostafa started unbuckling his belt, heading my way. This wasn’t a good sign.

-

The sharp sunrays shone down on me the following morning. I woke up in a puddle of blood, my body aching all over. I looked around. Not a sight of my little angel anywhere. I started panicking, terrible thoughts started rushing through my head. Where could she have gone? Then I looked around again. Mostafa was packing his bags.

“Where are you going? Where’s my daughter?”

“Non of your business.”

“Why are you doing this? Tell me! Tell me now!”

“Sakina, have you not thought about how I feel? You stupid women think that it’s always about you. Don’t annoy me any further, move on, forget about the past.”

I paused. Puzzled. “What do you mean ‘past’? Where’s my daughter?” I felt my body go hot all over while my face started steaming. My heart started sprinting as if it were participating in the Annual Tehran Marathon.

Mostafa dropped his bags and looked up at me. He walked towards me and cupped my face with his dolma-like, yellow cigarette stained fingers.

“I did what’s best for us. We needed the money, Sakina. Don’t you want to visit your parents?”

My heart started beating even faster. As if it were desperate for victory in the Annual Tehran Marathon. “I want my daughter back, Mostafa! Leave me, I don’t want to live with you anymore!”

Mostafa’s hands dropped. He looked at me for a few seconds with a look of resentment in his eyes. I saw his hands reach for his left hand side pocket. I stepped back, not knowing what was heading my way.

I suddenly let out a screech. The top part of my body was burning all over, sizzling. I felt my skin corrode. My heart stopped beating for a second.

I won the Annual Tehran Race. I received my prize.

-

I woke up in my own bed. A couple of nurses were by my side. Mostafa was mumbling to one of them, I saw him give them some money. I shut my eyes.

I heard Mostafa’s heavy footsteps approach me. He stroked my hair. “I’m sorry, Sakina. Forget all that has happened. Lets start afresh.” I stayed quiet. There was an uncomfortable silence looming in the atmosphere. I couldn’t believe it. Even after all he did, he expected me to forgive him? I wasn’t going to take it. I was going to go back to Mama’s house. I wasn’t going to forgive Mostafa. All men think they can get away with committing grave sins. I won’t let it pass easily this time. I can speak for myself this time.


-

03rd February 1934.


-

I’m still in Tehran. I’m still living with Mostafa. Mama is unaware of what has happened. Mostafa won’t let me speak to her. I have taken all mirrors down. I’m still unaware of my appearance. I don’t want to see myself. I’m afraid I’ll see the monster in my reflection, the monster I may then turn into… I’m afraid I’ll see Mostafa.

-

So here I am. Healing in Hell.



- BISMA

Friday, 5 December 2014

I Dislike School.

The title itself is pretty self explanatory, but yes you guessed it, I dislike school. (because hate is a strong word.)

Don't get me wrong, I love education, who doesnt enjoy learning new things? It's just school itself that bothers me. The whole education system, the rules, the regulations. We're being indoctrinated to think and act in a particular way. In a way that best suits the people at the top. Perceptions are being thrown down on us in an environment that is said to be free, that is said to hold a huge hand in making us feel as if we're at home, making us feel confident. That, however, is certainly not the case. 

How is one supposed to feel relaxed when even the air in the school premises reeks of jealousy, hate and discrimination. When teachers slyly pass degrading comments, when you feel so self conscious and cautious whilst walking alone, how are you to be content? 

I'd also like to state that alongside the 7 never ending hours already being spent at school, irrelevant homework is handed out each week for nearly each subject. Now I don't mind a piece of homework every now and then that is going to help me in the long run, however, basing my knowledge on a research task that I could easily copy off google isn't the way to go.

Don't get me wrong, I take great pride in my education/schoolwork. There's quite a lot that still needs changing, however. The uniform policy, the rules and regulations, the fact that we're forced to study certain subjects, the focus on STEM subjects being important, ignoring the creative side of studies... The list goes on.

It's time we made this wonderful concept of education an actual thing in schools.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Social Media

What comes to mind when you see the words "Social Media"? Facebook? Twitter? These are a couple, of many, social networking sites that today's generation hold a huge interest in and use on a regular, if not, daily basis.

You're probably wondering why I'm even writing a post about social media, everybody knows what it is and how it works. Well, that's the root cause of the problem we're facing today. Many social media sites are slowly taking over our lives and that ISN'T right. Many people are unaware of the cons of such platforms and the negative impact being made on us on a whole which worries me.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not against the use of social media as it can be very beneficial if used in the correct way. However, the extensive use of such platforms has more of a negative impact than positive which has started to affect us. Recent studies have shown that 70% of children in 1990 spent their free time by playing outside. That percentage has dropped by a staggering 50% in just over a decade. Doesn't that statistic speak for itself? 

The problem is that we as a generation rely on social media for nearly everything. From learning how to do things, to trying to earn a living. Which isn't bad, but it isn't beneficial either as vital lifetime skills are being lost. Lets take communication skills as an example. Just over half a century ago, all socialising was done face to face, which meant that people actually had to go out, make an effort, make eye contact with others and see the outside world while they were at it as they had to leave their homes. Whereas now, people can sit at home and talk to people just by the slight movement of their fingers over a keyboard. Now, is that healthy? Is sitting in front of a computer screen for endless hours everyday actually healthy? Where's the fresh air at? WE'RE MISSING OUT! Day by day we are becoming more and more dependant on such platforms which is affecting such skills of ours.
Why am I highlighting these problems, you ask? Well, it's because these issues are problematic. We're becoming duller, lazier, obese and antisocial as a nation. It's time we got up and changed ourselves. I'm not telling you to totally cut out the use of these platforms, however, it's time you stepped out the house without your phones for once which I believe will lead to a much healthier lifestyle.

I am fully aware of the fact that I, being a big social media addict myself, would never be able to do that but there's no harm in trying... and who knows, maybe, just maybe, I'll find myself a new hobby and I'll stop spending 3/4 of my day on the internet. 



Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Pakistani Weddings

In the 16 years of my existence, I have probably attended about 6 actual weddings, all of which happened to be in Pakistan. For those of you who don't know, the quintessential Pakistani wedding consists of 5 functions, which are:

THE ENGAGEMENT: 
This, in some cases, is when the bride-and-groom to be sit beside each other for the very first time. They quickly make eye contact while sly aunty jee's are distracted by a bit of ankle a girl is flashing, they touch hands to place rings on each other's fingers and that's as far as it goes for that matter.

DHOLKI: 
The name of this function derives from the percussion instrument called a "Dholak" which looks like this: 






It is usually a small family gathering which tends to be at the brides house about 2 weeks or the night before the big day. This is when all the females get turnt up while the males discuss politics in the other room. The aunty's wildly beat the "dholak" in a repetitive manner whilst belting out oldschool wedding songs at the top of their lungs like there is no tomorrow, children run wild and for people like us, well, we just sit there and watch. Like lemons, unsure on what to do and how to contribute.

MEHNDI: 
This is a strictly-girls-only function but you'll obviously see the odd one or two boys who love the presence of girls lurking in the corners of the room, hiding their faces out of embarrassment. It's when girls of either side are invited into a small ceremony where the bride-to-be sits infront of everyone and girls take turn to wipe ubtan or haldi on the brides makeup-free arms and cheeks, this is done before the wedding and is done in order to try and freshen up her skin before the big day.



THE NIKAH: 
This is the only religious aspect of the wedding and is when the groom and bride sign a contract of agreement. This consists of 3 "kabul hai's" (Agreed) from either person which religiously validates the marriage. After this, the bride is free to go home. However, for Pakistani's, a wedding is incomplete without the Baraat which is basically partying on the way to the grooms house (to drop the bride off there).

THE BARAAT: 
Traditionally, this is when everyone loses their sharam (shame). It's when the aunties, uncles, cousins, sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers (basically everyone) dance their way to the grooms house to drop the bride off there. By dance there, I don't literally mean it. I mean, they dance at the venue, then they all get into their cars and perhaps dance in the car, then they get to the grooms house and bust some more moves to the tunes of the dhol walay, who if you ask me, I think are pretty awesome. Their music makes EVERYONE want to dance, even if you're 5 or 82. (sorry for quoting Hannah Montanna).




THE VALIMA: 
Traditionally, this is when the grooms side funds a banquet for family and friends on both their side and the brides side. This is the last function of the wedding, probably the most expensive too. The bride and groom are displayed on the stage whilst everyone else sits at their tables and stuff their faces, all while passing witty comments on the bride's "fat this" or "skinny that." and once they finish with the food, after licking the remnants off their fingers (and the plate) they'll walk their way over to get some more whilst passing even comments about the food. After the food cycle repeats a few times, everyone is free to go home.


After all of this, the bride and groom are FINALLY free to go home and start a happy life together...

Sunday, 20 July 2014

SCHOOLS OUT!

SUMMER HOLIDAYS. FINALLY. 

 I've been waiting for this day since the first day of school and I can honestly say that ecstatic would be an understatement. Using words of any language to describe my feelings right now would be an insult to them, they're simply indescribable. 
The fact that I've been waiting so long for this day makes it even more special. Why am I excited, you ask? Well to start off with, I get 6 weeks off school, so why wouldn't I be excited? Also, I get to lie in, have lazy days, not worry about school and best of all, I actually get time to be antisocial.
I'm probably the 12348124th person to say this but I'll still say it anyway. This school year has literally whizzed by, I mean it! It was shorter than Snooki with 10" heels on, shorter than Kim Kardashian's marriage, shorter than the time spent in which Germany scored 5 goals against Brazil, shorter than a Marsupial's gestation period, which incase you didn't know, lasts about 12-13 days.
I was so caught up in everything that I didn't even realise that my school year came to an end. I didn't take a moment out to appreciate all that was around me. You know, things like the lovely school environment, our ever so caring teachers, the amazing girls who aren't judgemental or deceitful backbiters, similar to nutella covered strawberries with sugar sprinkled on top to your face but the spherical ball of evilness that's found in biryani (aka black pepper) behind your back. 



My point is that everything is happening too quickly. Yesterday was my last day to actually enjoy myself as next year I will have to be in every single day, put my head down, concentrate and complete all my work. Torture much? That, however, is something I say every year and I can proudly admit that I never stick to my words. I'm obviously not the only one though, right? I better not be. 

Anyway, I'm going to stop typing now as I'm busy doing nothing so I need to go back to do that. Adios Amigos!

Monday, 5 May 2014

Real Beauty

What really is beauty? Who decides what being beautiful really is? Is there really such thing as "Real Beauty" or is everybody beautiful in their own way?
What worries me is that when you type in "Beautiful Women" in on google, women plastered in makeup with provocative lingerie and big breasts come up. Is this what we should look like? The media truly has morphed our perception on what the average woman should look like.
The fact that day by day girls are starving themselves in order to obtain the "perfect" body image concerns me. The media indoctrinates us into thinking that we need to look like those "supermodels". It plays a huge role in how we perceive beauty. Images of female bodies are everywhere with women and girls, and their body parts, selling everything from food to cars. Popular actresses are becoming thinner, taller and younger. Women’s magazines are full of articles urging you to lose those last few pounds using their dietary plan, telling you that a remarkable change will be seen in your life if you do so.
The media makes us believe that external beauty and materialism are the most important things in this world. This "perfect image" of the woman simply does not exist when we analyse it from a physical way because EVERYONE has flaws. It's only natural. Beauty is only a supplement in a person. The personality, moral values and mainly the dignity and respect for oneself is what truly counts. The media does not realise how much damage is being caused to society by putting surreal women in their propaganda.
Next time you flick through a magazine, or watch TV and you want to look like a 'model' I want you to think. Just think. Is that what they really look like? Do you really want to look like that 'model' who has undergone several facial surgeries? That 'model' who has layers and layers of makeup on whose pictures have been edited using the latest editing software? 
Don't let the media feed you lies. 




Friday, 11 April 2014

Freedom

Freedom. We all think we have it. We all think we live free lives, but do we really?

We go to schools, colleges, universities, we have to go to work, earn a living, make some money, no? We abide by the law, we follow time schedules, we have to act in a way in which society would embrace and accept us or we face consequences. Consequences so deep, that they could leave an immense scar on us for life. Yet, we still think that we're free.

Short post to reflect on as I haven't posted in a while. On a totally unrelated note, here's a picture of a man eating a burger. Have a good day.