December 30, 2008
I am usually not the person who does that kind of end of year contemplations, and I am definitely do not do New Year’s resolutions either. However, everyone I know (and even those I don’t) seem to be taking the time to give 2008 a general overview!
It’s sad though how a lot of people keep counting the misfortunes that happened in the ending year. I mean, come on, there must be some good stuff that happened; otherwise, it would feel like a whole year has been completely wasted!
My friend told me it’s almost impossible to find anything good that happened in 2008 globally! I won’t try to prove her wrong; I’m too tired to do exhaust my brain cells. Instead, I decided to figure out the good things that happened to me in 2008.
It took me a rather long tour on my blog reviewing the posts I wrote since January! I rather find myself feeling the same about this year like I felt about August!
Anyways, I will be more specific about things that happened through the year which I consider positive…
I made new friends, I’m really grateful!
I managed to make more personal space for myself; I went to the movies a few times and been to a couple of music concerts, which is a big deal to a single mom!
I had two reunions with childhood friends; one in Jan, a 5-day trip to Luxor & Aswan, and the other in Aug, a 4-day trip all through the North Coast (Cairo, Alex, Matrouh, North Coast, Cairo)!! It was great meeting up with those guys again; I hope it happens again soon.
Kept my job for more than a year now with continuous positive feedback (aside from my daily morning tardiness :$). Managed two banquets for companies within the same field, and made good contacts with people from our Head Office, can’t complain at all!
Decided to start the D Blog as my way of giving something positive back, and this blog has earned me two precious friends (I know, it should fall into the friends category on top)!
I floated! (that was one hell of an accomplishment!!)
Went to Art Therapy and enjoyed it!
Had a kickass virtual birthday, and had dinner on the same day with my two best friends D & H :)
Caught up with M during his brief visit to Egypt and managed to have the most interesting conversations with him!
Became an auntie to two cuties; H’s baby boy on Oct13 and D’s baby boy on Oct18, two Libra boys! May God bless them and grant their mommies the patience to handle their Libra quirkiness!
Finally, through all the above, I have come to know a lot more about myself and my capabilities, I set a few rules for myself to live by and lived up to most of which, and I somehow managed to accept a lot of things that I never thought I would find it in me to deal with!
Alhamdulilah, I am grateful for all that. I can feel a slight bitter aftertaste because of all the other bad things that happened through the year, but I am willing to let go of it. This is why tomorrow; I am taking the day off so that my friend (and blog partner) and I would get the chance to bid this year farewell by sealing it with one good day at any cost!
Year 2008, farewell, thanks for all the laughs, really!
December 28, 2008
It just hit me!
Like any self proclaimed narcissist, I am aware of my qualities because I strongly believe that I should nourish and enrich them; not just that, I am also aware of my flaws because by embracing them, I learn how to not let them cloud my judgments and try to keep them under control.
It helps me learn about myself when I talk to people; when I hear their opinions and compare them against mine and see where I can relate and where I just can’t. I don’t always share what’s in my mind in the midst of that process, and sometimes I don’t share at all, but I definitely learn a lot.
A lot of people told me I am very emotional and passionate, and it goes both ways whether it’s about something I feel positively or negatively about.
I know friends who would intentionally provoke me into an argument just to watch my face turning red as I get carried away to make my point! Sometimes, while presenting my case, I catch a smile on my friends’ faces that goes “there she goes”, which could make me pause with embarrassment while sometimes it just makes me laugh as I realize they’re doing it on purpose!
Whether people do it on purpose, and whether I am catching on to their tricks, either way I always get passionate when people (mostly those I am on friendly basis with) lure me into an argument. It’s one of my things I suppose!
Ironically enough, although everyone I know keeps telling me that my passion is one of my biggest strengths, I keep finding out how it is my biggest weakness as well!
I don’t have an off-button for it. Sometimes I act like a crazy emotional neurotic (and sometimes hormonal) version of Don Quixote as I go on and on explaining things and proving points to an indifferent audience. It drives me crazy that I can’t help it even when I know I am being pushed on purpose just to be drained out of my strength.
Needless to say, I feel pathetic as I watch myself drawn to one futile argument after the other just like a moth to flame! I tell myself I should stop; that I should take a moment to pause hoping that moment would baffle those who want to use my passion against me. I tell myself that by always replying, I sometimes end up dignifying someone’s false claim, and that sometimes the best arguments are the ones unsaid! Sadly, I rarely go by that plan, and the few times I actually do, I get too angry and sometimes I even burst in tears!!
Talk about deadly passion!
Now, what’s your biggest strength? Could it also be your weakness?
December 25, 2008
Who knew depression can pile up and sneak on me all of a sudden at the very time I would normally think I even passed Phase V: Acceptance!
I was fine, I was alright, and I was accepting, even embracing my life and finding my little joys. A friend of mine was telling me a while back that he was impressed at my ability to shake off the negativity by getting involved in whatever distractions that come my way instead of wallowing and sulking in my bad mood.
WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED?!!!
Thanks to my mother for wanting me to reconsider “saving my marriage”; I can’t believe her! I can’t believe she’s still forcing me to have that discussion; I’ve been speaking my heart out all through the past time, wasn’t she listening!!!! I mean hello, the whole blogsphere knows how I feel about that marriage and they don’t even know me; what’s wrong with my own mother and why the hell can’t she just understand, accept and support me? Why is it so freakin’ much to ask?
And oh no, not just that, she’s saying that my dad has hope I would change my mind under his thick layers of disgust at my x. Seriously?! Although there is a considerable degree of untruth to everything she says, especially assumptions she makes about my father; she has successfully managed to alienate me from talking to him!
She is scaring the crap out of me. The fact that someone so close keeps reminding me of how hard raising those two boys will be without a marriage, and the fact that she keeps stressing that I won’t be able to do it and that they will grow up to resent and blame me for it, just cripples me and sends me back to my worst place.
I’m back to my worst days during the end of my pregnancy. Of course I don’t cry as much, but I’m choking on my words every time I speak, and I feel like I really can’t breathe, and I am so close to having a panic attack right at work that I keep rushing to the washroom because I don’t want people to see it happening!
Thanks to all the stress and the fear to which she’s exposing me, death does not sound half as scary as raising my kids; how freaky is that?! If I die my kids will idealize me and they will definitely love whatever memory I leave behind; sounds much better than “hating me for ruining the home they could have had” ME!
You know what ma; if I am such a lousy person and an extraordinarily horrible mother, take over, please. I will completely shut up about all the mess you’ve made; I will not share any of my therapist’s opinions of you or your role in how I picked the notorious x.
Who am I kidding? I can’t just sit back and let go of my boys for either you or him to raise them so that you’d get off my case. And neither can I go back to him; sadly my personality is too strong for his taste, not to mention that I cannot hide my contempt for him.
When you push so hard, you make me wish I were as submissive as you are, but it’s not in me to live that way, and I am sorry but I am not that crushed or broken to let people decide for me how I should live my life for anybody’s sake, even my kids, ok!
Please stop scaring me, I can’t take any of it anymore and I feel so freakin’ alone and I am sick of looking for support because I know that at the end of the day, I am completely alone in this and you’re taking away from me every ounce of strength I need to do it on my own and alienating me from everyone! I can take it from him, but coming from you, it just stinks!
December 24, 2008
I don’t believe in regret; to me, it simply does not fix things, it just makes one feel worse about things that are most likely too late to change. However, there are always times when I wonder “what if..??”; I always find it intriguing to think, like it’s my own mental exercise.
Since all my drama began, I would have those thoughts from time to time:
What if I never befriended him?
What if I never believed his lies when I first called it off?
What if I walked out when it got complicated?
What if I called off the marriage like I wanted to when it kept getting complicated?
What if I never agreed to move in with his family after his father died?
What if I never forgave him when he first screwed around?
What if I had decided to stay?
I have a could-have-been answer to each of those, but I really have peace with what really happened versus what could have happened.
But in my darkest hour, one very persisting thought haunts me… what if I never had kids with him?
Every time I find myself asking that question, I realize I’m hitting rock bottom. Don’t get me wrong I love my children, they’re probably the only real thing in my life.
The thought starts creeping in by me thinking “had I not had children with him, I would have walked away for good and never had to look back or be forced to sit and have all those futile arguments”. After all, most of the time I seem to manage not to cross ways with those I don’t like.
Then, I feel horrible having those thoughts in my head, and as I start blaming myself, I hear the other voice justifying “but they deserve better than such messed up parents; and let’s face it, aside from their crazy father, you know you are far away from the perfect mom they deserve. You wouldn’t be wondering what if they were never there if you were a decent mother; but you too want the easy way out, perhaps you’re not much better than him”
What I hate the most is that the silly voices in my head are right; I am a lousy mother, the only thing that makes me a good parent is being compared to him.
Now, I should shake off the silly thoughts, and tell myself it will be over; that there are so many reasons behind it all, and that most of which must be good because my kids are two amazing, cute and innocent children who must not pay for the stupid choices I made. I should tell myself to get it together and stop wallowing in those dark thoughts and go try harder at being a better parent.
Well, if you can’t right now, then it’s ok, send Beem to the club with your parents, put Mocha to bed, and go eat away your bad mood with your friend.
Must get ice cream on my way home.
December 23, 2008
When I was little, I didn’t realize I had a good childhood because I had (and still have) so many issues with my parents. I still find it confusing whenever I think about it; no wonder I confuse myself all the time!
My father was hard on me; he was always too strict because he thought it would make me a better person. He had ethics and principles that he practiced most of the time, except when anger got the best of him. The man who taught me that words once said, cannot be taken back, was the very same person who'd shoot words at me and make me spend so many sleepless nights crying before we'd start giving each other the silent treatment!
It could have been about feeling guilty, or simply because we were not ready to communicate, but we could go on not speaking to one another for as long as it took! One look at his face could tell how much more angry words he would be holding back and one look at mine could say how I thought I'd never forgive him. Truth is, I guess it mostly hurt because I knew I couldn't love him any less.
My father taught me a lot without knowing. He taught me to hold back my anger when I know I can't handle the consequences of letting it out. He taught me that we can get badly hurt by those we love, but it hurts even more when we know we can't do but forgive them because we can't imagine our lives without them. But most importantly, he taught me that forgiveness does not come with begging for it; I never begged for his, and he never begged for mine, but somehow we seem to be doing just great!
My mother on the other hand never had my father's strong character or presence. She tried to use his authority for her benefit, but it never served her the way she hoped for; in fact, it made her look less powerful! My only way of getting over my mother's hurtful words is by talking back to her face and confronting her with whatever nonsense she spoke; my logic had always beaten hers. I have always tried to use silent treatment out of my guilt for talking back at her, but she just never let me; she always said I had a cruel heart because of that!
My mother taught me that sometimes fighting back, as frustrating as it can be, helps you get over such fights. Sometimes it just helps to know you gave as much as you took, or not; after all, my mom and I are never on good terms for a long time.
My x was a lot like my mother; he’d shoot heartless words like there was no tomorrow, while I was more like my father, I’d keep piling up and strictly watch out for whatever words coming out of my mouth. Moreover, I barely ever snapped like my father; not just because I didn’t want to return the hurt, but also because I never wanted to beg for his forgiveness like he begged for mine.
He always said I was too proud and unforgiving. He just never got it; he was the one person with whom I was not that proud and he never had to beg for my forgiveness! Ironically, he always begged for it and it made him feel less proud, so he thought I was too proud to forgive him!
I always thought I was unforgiving. It took me quite some time to realize that I actually have it in me to forgive. Sometimes all it took was knowing that no malice was intended, sometimes it was because I could return the harm and get even, and sometimes it just happened because I was given enough time and space.
I’m sorry, I don’t have it in me yet. I am not angry like I once was, and neither am I hurt; I just remember too many things that I know you’re not sorry for, or at least not the way you should be, and that means you’re still the kind of person I can’t forgive.
I have moved on, and even evolved a bit... I don’t hate you, and I obviously can stand you, but I lost that magic that made you seem flawless to me and I honestly do not want it back.
Why can’t we just write “The End” here?
Why do you keep pushing? You’re confusing me, you’re trying to make me feel guilty, but what you do not get is that all your tactics will never make me want back; being away from you is the one certainty on which I am rebuilding my life, and it’s not about forgiveness, so please stop begging for it.
December 20, 2008
When I was growing up, nobody bothered explaining!
They told me stories from religion and those from fairytales, all conforming that “good things happen to good people and that bad people always get what they deserve”, nothing could ever question that logic.
In the great attempt of encouraging me to be a good person, they forgot to bring my attention to the hardships good people have to face before they get the good they deserved. They forgot to teach me that “good things come to those who wait”, keyword: wait; they forgot to teach me about patience.
It took me 25 years of being an average good person –a very impatient one though-, to realize that I misunderstood a few important facts about life. I was “good” because I did not want bad things to happen to me. My goodness was all about inflicting no harm on others; the point was that no one would do to me the things I never did to others. If I disliked someone, the most damage I could do was showing it by not paying any attention to them; that made sense in my head because it was better than being a hypocrite.
In the process, the person I harmed the most was I. I was not a good person as far as I was concerned, but I didn’t see it because when it came to others I was my own weird version of all the fairytale characters I liked! I could not harm others, not intentionally at least, but I did harm myself, both intentionally and unintentionally! Needless to say, bad things came my way even when I thought I was being good.
It didn't stop there! The agony and the pain of thinking I was good and being so messed up blurred my thinking for quite a long time! Since I was never really the depressed kind of person, anger was my outlet. Seeing good people I know, having their own load of hardships did not help either; it was extremely beyond me to understand or accept that bad things do happen to good people. I kept getting angrier and more resentful of everything around me, and I became my own worst enemy.
Of course being married to a crazy person who manipulated all that to his own interest and being pregnant and hormonal twice in less than two years did not help at all!
It took me a bad marriage, and all the things that came along with it to find my way and learn so many lessons I did not even know I should learn! Around the past couple of years, I redefined my understanding of life and people.
It was such a revelation to figure out that life is not as black and white as I thought it was. Although actions speak louder than words, things people do cannot always be explained from a black/white perspective! People are not necessarily all good and definitely not all bad! It's more like supply and demand but in a more complicated way because the factors defining those curves are not in anyone’s hands to control.
That was my hardest lesson to learn. Bad things happen to good people! It was hard to accept bad things, to understand that how I react to them can either help me understand the how’s and why’s or can leave me confused and angry forever.
Patience on the other hand is still something so hard for me to practice, I usually distract myself until things pass, or tell myself to just sit there and wait for the reasons to prevail, but I wish I would be patient more gracefully, I’m still working on that.
heights… it’s manageable, but it gets to me from time to time…
insects and spiders… tried working on my fear by killing them, but I get too hysteric throwing shoes at them and then I get to scared their spirits would haunt my shoes…
becoming another version of my own mother… or my kids resenting me like I sometimes resent her…
death… only because I know it will come when I’m least ready, and because now I have two people depending on me…
growing old… the helplessness and the loneliness scare me, plus, women in my family DO NOT age gracefully…
that my decisions, especially the bad ones, would come back and haunt me…
losing loved ones, either to death or to disappointment followed by detachment and letting go…
looking back and feeling that my life was a total waste…
December 17, 2008
I hate being condescending; condescending people usually get on my nerves and give me strong urges to punch them in the face, but sometimes I am severely provoked and I find myself doing it.
SALESPEOPLE DRIVE ME INSANE!
Yes!!! I’ve said it. I don’t know if it’s this country and its collective culture or it's global, but for the love God, I need a break from all the sales phone calls, I don’t have it in me to be pleasant and appropriate both in my professional life and in my personal life all the time, I too need to practice my right of being obnoxious!!!
I do not mean to undermine salespeople or their profession or the science behind the whole theory of selling; hell, I’m a huge consumerist, I would normally be a salesperson's best friend in a perfect world!!
But let me just clarify a couple of things here…
Being a business grad, I kinda studied some of that; however, I am really not in the mood of saying big business jargon, partially because I’m a bit rusty here, but mostly because this post is not about showing off my rather limited knowledge.
I was taught a few sales principles that every salesperson, as well as his/her employers (most of which I’ve known of are idiots who know/practice nothing of those principles) should be aware of…
- Sales is NOT marketing… marketing is the backstage for sales; they complete one another, but they are definitely not the same… any half decent academic book can simply explain that!
- Salespeople MUST know their customer… before you call in a company offering your product/service, ask about the company you’re calling; it may sound like no big deal to you, but trust me, it will save you unnecessary embarrassment and heck, it might even make the conversation a bit more interesting or you might learn something new!!! And if you’re at the mall or whatever, and you notice a married couple (the rings theory), don’t approach them with a stupid greasy smile about timeshare or such crap while they're both wearing their angry faces or struggling to discipline their kid(s)! And FYI timeshare: BAAAAAA
- Salespeople MUST be honest… for the love of God, whoever said you should lie or hide facts to make your product/service look/sound flawless is a big fat jerk who could have been really successful, but it’s not guaranteed that you have the same kind of evil wits they had to pull it off yourself!! I –as well as the next potential customer/client- prefer to know the cons of whatever it is you’re offering before the pros; this way, I can never be really disappointed when I expect something to expire within a certain period of time! I appreciate honesty, and I doubt any other reasonable person wouldn’t!
- Salespeople MUST have wits… now, being honest does not mean you have to make the truth sound as dull as it might be; you can simply focus on little perks in your product/service that would appeal to your potential customer. Be smart and use decent humor, but don’t push it; no one likes a jerk who says lame jokes and laughs at them!
- Salespeople MUST know when to STOP… please, do know when to stop pushing, because once you lose the attention of your audience, there is no way you're getting it back, and then it gets really humiliating and annoying; so just know when to back off!
- Salespeople MUST be pleasant and polite… even when you’re turned down, maintain the smile WHILE backing off; be a graceful loser, no one likes a sore loser. And if you’re turned down rudely, trust me, it will embarrass the other person much more if you keep your cool and just walk away with your head held high; rude people are either angry people who are likely to feel horrible after such reaction, or crazy people who would take it against you and keep giving you more rude words until they cause trouble, you see, the customer is always right ;)
Now, I completely respect and communicate with any salesperson who contacts me –either at work or while I’m out on a personal errand- who knows and practices those rules; even when I don’t need the product/service, I politely say "thank you" and smile.
On the other hand, I have serious issues with those who don’t, and sometimes I turn into my angry b**** mode and make that salesperson feel like crap by stating in so many ways how unprofessional they are. I really hate doing that, and I feel horrible afterwards (unless the salesperson was a super jerk who pushed buttons other than my intolerance for unprofessionalism). I feel bad because I hate that some people might mistake my attitude for me being less appreciative of people working in that field, especially that it’s a common misconception that sales people are not as cool as marketing and advertising people!
I don’t hate you good salespeople out there; as a matter of fact, I love you, and I love buying things from you, sometimes I am even too impressed by your qualities that I spend money on things I may not really need and it still feels good, and I even spread the word!! See, I am your best friend for real, just do not take me for grated.
December 14, 2008
"You've come a long way" That’s what two of my friends whom I’ve got to know through this blog have told me when they last heard about my last encounters with the x. They said they were proud, and hearing that from two people who have not even gotten to see how it was when I first started, I couldn’t help but feel much prouder.
That’s the thought that came to mind as he kept calling.
Flashbacks of me crying nonstop since it all started, memories of utter confusion and self-doubt. Small details that haunted me and took away my peace, I remember them all! Not as painfully clear as I thought I would always do; they don’t bring as much pain, almost none, but they are quite the reminder of what I’ve been through.
Like the few hours before my c-section… and before that, the long drives with my pregnant belly and tears blinding me. Like the stitches that kept coming off post surgery from all the weeping and sobbing. Like the public humiliation caused by all the lies and the insults. Like his girlfriend walking towards me and rubbing it in and the dentists who used such information to harass me… millions of small details that caused so much turbulence and led me to believe I could never bounce back.
So I guess yes, I never thought I would reach indifference. I spent too many hours wishing for revenge and hoping I’d see him painfully regretting all of it. My ego visualized scenarios of him asking to have me back and me harshly rejecting him and hurting him twice as much as he hurt me. There were times I even motivated myself to move on by imagining the negative impact it would have on him to see me taking control of my own life without him. Until recently, I would occasionally wish him terrible things when it gets too annoying for my taste, and then I’d silently blame myself and shake off the negative feelings or write about it when it was too much to be shaken.
Until he actually asked me to return to him, I did not realize it would mean NOTHING to me the way it did! My ego did not even gloat about it; it seemed to shake its non-existing head without the least signs of interest, who knew! I found myself smiling to myself, for indifference felt much better to me than any possible revenge I could possibly plot or hope for! I am grateful that way.
So no, you don’t have any hold on me whatsoever, and it feels liberating to really know that you can’t get to me like you once did. It’s not fulfilling that you keep asking me to reconsider, it’s rather discomforting because it makes me worry my continuous rejection will make you react violently. Men do not take rejection well, something about male ego… and let’s put it this way, you’re not the sanest of men, not even close.
When you keep asking dull questions that should give you hints on my so called romantic life, you make me wanna laugh! You wouldn’t understand, all those who smile at me like they know better do not get it either. My romantic self is brain-dead, she’s on life support and I am too afraid to declare it, but I know she would not wake up, and I am completely ok with it; it makes me feel safe that way.
And no, I don’t want a divorce so that I can get married, I dread marriage now, not just because of the horrible experience or the lessons I learned in the process, but also because I know I would lose my kids to you, something I can never live with… but would you know about that!
Stop trying to talk me into being with you, stop trying to talk me out of divorce. There is no chance in hell I would reconsider. Had you known me better, you’d know I would not compromise on that one; that’s what happens when you marry solely for love, you have no reason to stay once that love is beaten out of you :)
Let me enjoy my peace, and go look for yours elsewhere for I have none to offer you.
Last night I went to bed thinking about redecorating my room. I am already buying a placard and bunkers and I was considering changing my bed. Also, my mom said something about how stained my walls seem to be, which gave me courage to say that I HATE the yellow with passion and I would really like a new color; I really don’t know what I was thinking choosing that shade. In my defense, I was pregnant and depressed and someone said yellow was cheerful, it’s not, it actually makes me wanna poke my eyes when I am headachy and have to look at yellow walls!!
I ended up having a weird dream of my x. Actually, the dream was more of an extension to his occasional calling and my redecorating ideas. We were furniture shopping and he kept stopping at bedrooms and choosing stuff he’d buy for us!! It freaked me out and I asked him why he’d be buying me a new bedroom, and he said because he wanted me back. I swear, that had a nightmare effect on me that I woke up and rushed to bathroom and kept washing my face with ice-cold water telling myself over and over again I was not going back to him.
Then we had that phone call today. Apparently, I’m somewhat psychic, he was supposed to get the keys to the apartment we planned to move into when we first got married, and he called asking if I wanted to join him. After I gave him my it’s-non-of-my-business attitude, and after he kept saying that he was planning to furnish that place so that the boys and I would move there, I couldn’t help remembering my dream/nightmare of earlier. I’ve been noticing how he’d subtly hint to the old days when we were love birds and I have politely and also subtly pointed out that he shouldn’t. That was when this happened…
Me: ok, you call a lot, and I am too busy to meet and discuss our divorce settlement, so how about we do it over the phone?
Him: come on, such things cannot be discussed over the phone
Me: trust me, it should take less time than your daily calls, and I meant we should talk headlines and meet to discuss details later, at least so that both of us would be prepared…
Him: we’ll disagree, and it’s harder to convince you to stay on the phone than it is to make you stay when we’re sitting somewhere
Me: I wouldn’t count on that if I were you
Him: shayfa, adeena ekhtalafna
Me: ok then, until I figure out when we can meet stop calling
Him: (bla bla bla, I really don’t remember what he said)
Me: (bla bla bla, I was probably answering his bla bla)
Him: ok, law 3ayza nenfesel, yeb2a by February, I don’t have money to settle el mo2akhar before that
Me: but I told you so many times before, I do not want that money; you can put it in a fund for the boys, or use it to furnish that apartment if we should move there, but I am not taking money from you
Him: bas da law 3ayza nanfesel…
Me: ok, let me say that clearly enough, esmaha nettala2, nenfesel has a nos nos kinda meaning, like how we are now, we’re separated but we’re neither married nor divorced…
Him: (in a weird tone) ok, nettala2, ma3 enny shayef enaha fekra ghabeya…
Me: (thinking NOT AGAIN) we elly e7na feeh da mesh ghabawa!!! It’s not right by any means, so please don’t make me go over it again!!
Him: (in a cautious and hesitant tone) ana mesh asdy nefdal keda, ana asdi nerga3…
Me: (oh my God, NOOOOOO) no… no!
Him: but why, just talk it through without losing your temper…
Me: you’re asking me why? Ok, how many reasons do you want???
Him: khalas, no need to humiliate me
Me: (feeling bad for a split second that I squished his ego) ok… so what is your divorce settlement?
Him: ok then, I plan to pay for the boys’ education, medical care, clothes and such needs plus a monthly allowance, I just don’t know how much I can commit to yet…
Me: (really?!!!!!) in that case, I think it’s ok, thanks…
Him: right… so when do we meet?
Me: I’ll contact my lawyer and ask him to prepare the necessary documents, and will call you
Him: is that it?
Me: (I don’t want any mushy BS about the way we were) hey, I gotta go, my sis is calling, mocha needs a change, salam
Him: tesba7y 3ala kheir
Me: wenta men ahloh, bye
If he really meant it, and if he was as hurt as he sounded, then I am sorry. I just don’t think it’s ok to live with someone whom I no longer love, trust or respect. There is nothing he can do that can fix that, but there is a million other things he can do to fix whatever happened between us by being a good father to his boys. He’s still the immature man who tried and almost broke me, and I doubt he’s good father material, but I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t close my eyes real hard and hope for the best; after all, I can’t waste my kids’ chance of having a half decent father.
Something tells me he will end up being his same old self, and I will end up ranting about it here.
December 4, 2008
Coming from a religiously conservative family, I was brought up to take extra pride in my faith, even though I did not necessarily understand it enough to practice it properly. Almost everyone in my family (from both sides) has a meaningful name influenced by religion.
My dad gave my sisters and me very unique names that make people go “ohhhh” when they know our names; they are simple, short and have quite the religious significance.
Mine however is not exclusively Islamic, it goes back to Jewish origins; a fact which makes it easier to pronounce than my sisters’. My father’s name on the other hand is esm morrakab; meaning, he has two names to count as a first name, more like the western verion of middle names, only everyone I know acknowledges his second name since the first is Mohamed, which is pretty common in our culture.
Until college, I used to go by my first name and my father’s middle name. That combination made my name sound perfectly neutral; people couldn’t guess my religion and accordingly treated me cautiously in fear of offending me.
I won’t go through with the whole issue of whether religious tolerance exists in Egypt or not; it’s fair to say that some people (either Christians or Muslims) are tolerant of the other religion, while some others simply aren’t. As a child, it was confusing, and it led to a huge deal of misconceptions that took me quite some time to overcome (not in a traumatizing way though).
I resented by name, because it made people ask me too many questions. I really wanted a simpler name that did not raise so much questions and wonderings before people started getting comfortable.
Until I got veiled!
I was confronted by how cruel society can be, judging people by their looks. I realized that my neutral name and non-significant appearance shielded me from awkward moments. I realized it was a blessing having been treated with extra caution!
And no, it’s not the expected group of people who judged me, whatever that is. Against the general assumption, I travelled to the US the next summer, and I barely had any troubles because of my veil. Average Americans, aside from the “notorious” political agenda (which is not up to me to support or condemn), do not judge people based on their looks the way people do in Egypt (and perhaps the Middle East). We are such racists and bigots and the sad part is that we hide it under thick layers of fake religiousness and liberalism which we barely practice when unwatched.
Please meet those who judge me…
- Strictly religious Muslims who consider what I wear not hijab, and expect me to dress more modestly, and
- Pseudo-Liberals, either Christians or Muslims who seem to be very appalled by my veil!
Now I won’t go defending my choice or my religion because I don’t think those who judge me or my likes would either understand or appreciate what I have to say. All I can say is “SHAME ON YOU”, both parties.
“Religious Muslim Practicers”, you should know that “الأعمال بالنيات”, you should know that “الدين يسر، و ليس عسر”, you should “بشروا و لا تنفروا”, and if I am that offensive to look at, you can totally “غض البصر”!!
And “Liberals”, shame shame shame, the people who had passed the “liberal heritage” to you fought for big notions like “freedom of choice” that should be accepted without consequences, but what can I say, you were obviously never involved in such fights and simply cannot appreciate the trophy, freedom!!
I find both parties hypocrites, who miserably fail practicing what they preach and give their causes a horrible horrible names.
It used to hurt and offend me when I felt mistreated because of my veil, but then I realized something; it’s a unique way of blocking all the fakers and pretenders who can’t handle but judge me based on my appearance rather than my personality. To those people, I say it’s really your loss, touché!
December 1, 2008
It’s extremely funny to see how someone’s tone can switch from soft and inviting to obnoxious and offensive when they know they are definitely failing to get to you. It’s even funnier to take it with a smile and find fulfillment in their anger as they withdraw. Priceless!!
Now let’s rewind a bit to get to that point…
He calls every day, more than once, and I answer, but not every single time. I answer because I like to confront my feelings and defy them; I know my dislike for him is huge, and I am taming my anger and discontentment and forcing myself to be civil around him until I can fairly say I reached indifference. Someone once told me I was my own worst critic that way; because I keep pushing myself to do the things I think I should do.
I told a friend of mine last week that my x’s tone is not making me feel comfortable; it’s like he still wants me back and he’s trying to be extra nice and sweet to make me “fall in love with him all over again”!!! He has no clue!
Throughout the week, I noticed how he’d call and start out by saying he was checking on the boys, and then he would babble on and on about his daily activities until he finally noticed my lack of interest with all my “hmm” and “aaah” that are not even synchronized with whatever he’d be saying.
He tried everything; he tried provoking me into arguing with him, to my surprise, I was not even tempted to honor his argument by answering or even saying a remark! He picked things that would annoy me, and it kinda did for a while there, only I managed to shake them off in less time than it took him to finish his sentence!! It was more surprising for me than it was for him! He ended up saying “damek ba2a te2eel awy”… I said in my monotonous tone without noticing what he was saying to begin with “ahuh, ghaleban”. We stayed silent for God knows how long until he realized there was nothing he would do to make me talk to him and just said “ok, I’ll talk to you later”, I just put my cell aside and resumed working on my excel sheet, like he never existed.
My recent indifference reminded me of that poem.
Confronting myself further, I wrote an email to a friend describing how I felt; how some of what he said kinda got to me, why I think they got to me, and how I told myself they shouldn’t. I admit I was a bit more upset after finishing the email, may be because I confronted myself way too much, but I soon forgot all about it having to finish up so many reports and go home to my babies.
Sitting on my bed and browsing away on my laptop, he called again. More or less the same scenario; soft tones hiding millions of futile ways to get under my skin, but I learned the trick, ignoring him is much easier when I am distracted checking my reader. He started the most pathetic thing, reminiscing! He kept talking about the good things he remembers of me, things I once did out of love, not because I wanted anything in return, things I would do again for anyone whom I care about half as much! And I was barely listening, so I didn’t know when it was my cue to say “aah”, so he was like, “do you remember?”, I instantly answered without thinking, “remembering does not make much of a difference really; it’s all meaningless now”… I did not say it to spite him or hurt him, I said it because it was how I felt!
That was when the tone altered dramatically as he turned into his most condescending tone “bey2olo elly maloosh mady we zekrayat, maloosh mosta2bal bardu”… I went BLANK!!!!!!! Normally I would have said something sarcastic or twisted his words to make him sound like an idiot, I would have found millions of way to use his own remark against him; instead, I didn’t even care the least to think of something, it just didn’t matter! He gave me his upset and hurt tone as he said “salam, and thanks a lot for the motivation, tesba7y 3ala kheir”, to which I replied “bye” and hung up.
After hanging up, it hit me that indifference has such a sweet sweet taste that’s only appreciated by those who stop caring. Either that or I have become numb. No complaints though, alhamdulilah.
November 29, 2008
My x called today. It was his first call since his aunt visited on Wednesday. She has noticed how I kept asking Beem about random words and their meaning in French as he talked; my own way of helping him practice what he learns at the nursery. She asked if I planned to put him in French schooling and I said it was my first option. She paused for a while and said “would you please involve their father in the process; he has financial obligations to which he should attend”. I nodded and that was the end of that conversation.
Today he called to say so many incoherent nonsense, most of which discussing his own perception of people who go through French schooling. According to him, they are fed too much culture, which in turn affects their perception of life, making them unable to deal with life from a practical point of view. He believes men his age who had received French education lack the macho factor and are rather nerdy with a touch of “nadala”! He is convinced that French education would limit my kids’ options upon graduation to “guys who speak fluent French but know nothing more about their jobs”!
For thirty whole minutes, I endured his shallow, arrogant, and condescending crap about men and women of our age category who happened to receive French education! For thirty whole minutes, all I wanted to tell him was that his skewed and distorted perceptions do not by any chance validate his weak theories. I wanted to tell him that if all the men and women he knows and judges so harshly are truly as bad as he described, then the one more thing they have in common other than their education would be him! I wanted to tell him that he’s not a better example to judge others, that his “athletic body” and “good looks” mean nothing at all when compared to his shallow personality and pseudo intellect that he uses to come off as a sophisticate!
Months ago, I would have gotten very angry and started yelling to the extent that I would have probably cried! Today, I just got upset, and I managed to change the mood by calling a friend of mine and laughing it off with her! Later, I talked to another friend about my fears of messing up my kids’ lives by not wanting them to be like their dad to the extent that I would turn them into an unhealthy extreme. Now, as I started writing this post, I was planning to write down the conversation and how it went, but to my surprise, I couldn’t even remember most of his exact words that got on my nerves!
Looks like I have finally learnt how to block the useless and unnecessary things that negatively alter my mood! All I remember of those thirty minutes is that he did not make sense and that his logic kept contradicting with itself making it rather funny to hear him babble on until I finally lost interest! Who knew!!!
November 25, 2008
So you did your thing; where you are too freakin’ persistent and pushy that I would eventually answer the phone to give you my feedback on all the emails and messages, good for you.
So you tried your cheap shots of placing the blame on someone from my family whom you refused to say their name saying they told you to keep me that way for perhaps I would reconsider the marriage. I told you there was no chance in hell I would go back and you said you knew that, fair enough.
So you gave your noble act the best shot and went on and on about how you really want to be there for the kids; sadly, you could only elaborate with financial offers by which you knew I would be offended, it’s ok, I gave you the toughest replies a man could get from his soon to be x-wife.
So you said you really wanted to sit and talk and reach an agreement, the best for our kids; alright, I am giving you the benefit of the doubt and seriously considering compromising some of my rights for theirs.
Apparently, you have mistaken my semi-calm, semi-emotional tone of voice and my pleasant attitude for something they simply not; so I just need to set a few things straight…
I am not your friend, and the chances of me ever becoming one are pretty slim to none; I can be civil and pleasant, but it really depends on which buttons you do not push…
There is no chance in hell I am ever coming back to you or even considering it, so I don’t appreciate the soft tone and the cliché reminiscing; it’s juvenile and insulting. I do not miss you, or miss the way we used to be; if anything, I think I have blocked all the good memories, and thanks a lot for helping. I do not even miss love because everything about this marriage reminds me of how ugly love can turn….
Whatever it is you plan to do for the kids, it is your duty and obligation as a father towards them; it is not a favor or something for you to show off doing, and for whatever it’s worth, if you don’t want to do it, I will make sure they will not need it…
You do not get to take away the kids to “relief me from my burden”; my babies are not a burden, they are beautiful, and like all beautiful things, they are definitely worth whatever trouble I may go through…
Don’t you ever bring up what went wrong again; two can play that game, and I assure you, I will be the winner and I won’t be graceful or sympathetic; I will be mean, cruel, harsh, and extremely insensitive and I could even make you cry. No good would come out of that so just don’t!
And FYI, the “wisdom and calmness” you noticed in me are due to something you know nothing of; being mature!! Or at least something close enough to that, not to mention that it’s much easier for someone like me to be wise and calm when I simply couldn’t care less, got it?!!
November 23, 2008
So Frustrated and Jessyz tagged me to do the Bucket List for my next 10 years. I am not the kind of person who usually thinks more than two weeks ahead; if anything, two weeks ahead is such an accomplishment! Surprisingly enough, I managed to come up with 13 things I wanted to do; who knew?!!
Oh, and my tagees are: Deeeeeee, Will E., Rasha, Eventuality, Kovs; only if they feel like it, and of course whoever stops by and feels like doing it is most welcomed to...
People, my Bucket List…*
- Get my divorce finalized, and perhaps settle things in a more civil way (one could only hope)
- Get the boys in the French school of my preference
- Work a lot more on my French (really counting the above point would be a motivation for me)
- Manage by some miracle to become more organized and tidy up my stuff and my kids’
- Give the boys their private space
- Manage to establish two-way communication with my boys, so that I can teach them all the good things I think they should learn, and prepare them for achieving their full potential, and I really don’t want them to be momma’s boys, but neither do I want them to be insensitive jerks! (hhhhhaaard job)
- Have a short trip on my own or with a couple of friends, a euro-tour perhaps… it has to be less than a week because I’d be missing my boys like crazy…
- Find my passion… I still don’t know what my passion is, and I decided I should take it easy on the looking and wait for it to find me… I have a few things in mind that I would like to try out…
- Read more
- Be a better person, as strange as it sounds for someone who does not care much about how people think of her, I would like to know that I have touched the lives of those I care about, in a good way of course; it means a lot to know that I make a difference to those I love
- Work on my faith practices and do my pilgrimage with the optimum spirituality with which I think it should be done (it’s hard to explain, but it makes sense in my head)
- Take better care of my health and manage to reduce my bad habits or at least put them under control
- Meet some, or one of the people whom I respect and have a meaningful discussion (don’t ask about names, none come to mind right now, but I am sure I have a few people in mind, I can’t be that vain!)
* Of course there is an order to that list, only it was hard to come up with one; so this is not the order I think I should go by. Just needed to be clear on that...
November 22, 2008
“Hope is a dangerous thing; hope can drive a man insane” Red (Morgan Freeman), The Shawshank Redemption
I believe hope is a good thing; it helps us get by in our darkest hours. Nonetheless, I can see how the above quote can make sense; you see, of all the things that can have a negative impact on a man’s life, hope can top them all because hope in its essence is a good thing. It justifies making decisions perhaps we shouldn’t be making, or believing in things that have previously gotten us disappointed.
They say stupidity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results; sometimes hope is our motivation to do the same thing one more time thinking the result would be more favorable this time, making us more vulnerable to disappointment. Hope is the honey that hides the taste of poison but fails to hide its lethal effect, disappointment and regret.
I am a person who lives by hope. Hope for a better day, hope for better things coming my way. I find my own ways of holding on to whatever hope there is no matter how crappy things seem to be; it’s somewhat my bliss, or perhaps my curse!
I’m afraid I am knowingly taking my own sip of what could be poisoned honey just because I don’t want to allow my doubts and my previous disappointments to get the best of me. I don’t want to give up on my hope and wonder “what if?”... I tell myself it’s ok to have hope even if it turns out to be false, because at least I am quite aware of the possible disappointment, and somewhat ready for it if it takes place.
Does disappointment count when we anticipate it? Does it hurt as much when we know it’s more likely to happen?
Is it stupid to have a hope that had previously led to a disappointment? Or is it simply hopeful?
I guess I should find out on my own even if I end up feeling like an idiot afterwards.
November 19, 2008
Despite that I am in a good mood, I have been piling up some rants about current events; internationally, locally, and of course personally. I planned to keep them for myself but Rasha hates how quiet my blog has been lately, so there…
- Barak Obama. mabrouk 3ala amreeca, I really mean it, but for the Arab world, ETWEKSO. All talk shows had nothing to discuss but that; analyzing the crap out the whole thing, hell even my x gave me his sick analysis through email! News flash people, the man does not owe you a thing, he owes whatever it is that he owes to the American people. Yes, America’s regimes do affect the world, I understand, but for the love of God and all that’s holy, stop analyzing something you can never experience, let alone achieve; you better work on things that you can actually do something about! Government officials and political specialists, analayze khebetko el te2eela or try do something about it instead of talking about things you have no first-hand knowledge of!!! And for the rest of the Arab world who just talk, 3ala fekra, da elly gayebko wara; el kalam wel faty el mas7oob be 3adam el entag… so, to sum it up ETWEKSO!!!
- I’ve been getting all sorts of enlightening suggestions through email about improvement of education since that poor child died (God bless him and his family), but again, seriously, why do we do nothing but making unrealistic suggestions. Most of those who can’t keep their pie holes shut have nothing to do with education and have no power to change things!!! I’m sorry for being a cynical bitch but unless there is something you can do, or unless someone asks you your opinions, keep them to yourself; it’s extremely frustrating to hear over and over and yet over again how crappy education is and knowing all the same that there isn’t much one can do about it.
- Noha Rushdy. I don’t get the controversy, I don’t! If she has been harassed, then I completely respect what she did and how she stood up for her rights, it’s really as simple as that. Her ethnic origin, whatever it is, should not be of any importance, and fellow Egyptians, Noha Rushdy is not how the el 3adow el sohyoony gets us, again, please ETWEKSO!!!!
- The court ruling regarding exporting Natural Gas to Israel. Do you seriously believe that ruling will be enforced?! Makansh da ba2a 7alna, this is not a transparent country with transparent politics and economics, and I really hate talking about those things because 1- I don’t know enough to say something meaningful, and 2- there is nothing I can do to change any of it. It just pisses me to see people cheering for an illusion.
- That statistics report about the Egyptian society and its notorious results. I find it extremely unprofessional that the specialists working on that report have failed to take into consideration something like Hofstede’s five cultural dimensions (which was taught in freshman year at college) when comparing awareness and satisfaction results of the Egyptians to those of other countries!!! It’s no secret theory and anyone who works in that field should be aware of it, mesh 3ashan kont ta3leem agnaby!!! And while I’m at it, how come no studies were done/regarded to understand the collective Egyptian culture before making any statistical report on the Status of Egyptians, and I mean the average mesel7y who walks the streets elly beykhaf mel 7asad we beydary 3ala sham3eto 3ashan tewala3 feeh we fe ahloh!!!
- The doctors in KSA. I’m appalled and it makes me angry every time I think about it. I know Egypt is rotten in so many ways, I know every country in the world is rotten in its own way, but the one thing that makes Saudi Arabia more obnoxious is that they inflict social and legal injustice using the name of religion which is just *insert sheteema*. I say social and legal injustice because I have serious doubts the same court ruling would have taken place had the doctors been of Class A nationalities or God forbid Saudi royalty. People who make such horrible things and hide behind religion disgust me. And I don’t give the least care if the are religious scholars because I still doubt their fairness and objectivity.
- My x sent me yesterday (the 18th) a text on my cell wishing me a happy 8 years and 6 months anniversary. Why does this person like to remind me of my lost years?!
Kefaya keda, I think that was too much ranting and I think I ended up doing what I just mentioned above that I dislike; giving my unneeded and unasked opinions about things I can’t change. Well, in my defense, I would have kept my opinions to myself had people around me refrained from providing me with theirs.
November 11, 2008
I’ve been putting on some weight since Ramadan, not the significantly noticeable kind for others, but rather the kind that makes me feel guilty every time I am indulging a food craving. My work pants were getting a little bit tighter and a couple of my tops kinda felt tighter as well, God bless my boss for not saying a word about me going to work in jeans and dressed like a hobo!
Knowing me, going on a strict diet wouldn’t change much because I know my weight changes radically in short periods of time depending mostly on my mood, I was just hoping it wouldn’t keep going until I’m fat. Anyways, in a futile attempt to eat healthy I ate Greek salad, which didn’t really do me any good, not just because I ate around 3 slices of pizza later that day, but also because the salad was definitely contaminated (everyone ate from the pizza and thank God no one got sick).
Two days later, I think I have managed to lose all the extra weight I had put on in two whole months!! Of course I’ve also managed to drain all my body fluids in every way possible, of course I still feel dizzy and woozy, and still get urges to throw up, not to mention the embarrassing bathroom visits, of course my hair looks and feels damaged especially that I have not combed it since Saturday night, and of course my eyes look totally different… but hey, I lost weight! Who knew salad could have that miraculous effect!
This is my first day at work this week, and I think I will leave at noon once I make sure I won’t be needed. I can’t stand up for more than three minutes, and my colleagues keep commenting on how much weight I must have lost, which somehow makes me smile, shallow I know! I took my antibiotic, and I have right next to me a cup of tea (I hate tea) and some weird biscuit my boss gave me because “I must eat something”. Upon tasting the biscuit, it does not taste bad at all, wow, I still have it in me to taste food! However, I do not see salad-eating in my near future although I am a big salad lover, and neither do I see apples (I still taste my vomit after my first apple-eating attempt)
Oh, and a friend of mine and I were once contemplating becoming bulimic to lose weight… honey, don’t; all the throwing up is definitely not worth it.
November 7, 2008
Another silly text message from him and his timing couldn’t be worse; a couple of hours after I posted the previous post and watched a disturbing movie.
He’s basically telling me he had just visited a friend of his who got married months ago and just had a baby. He was saying how his friend, whom he failed to mention his name –which makes me assume I don’t even know the guy- was sending his greetings to the wife, me. He was describing how his friend was telling his own family how my x is such a “moltazem w gad w mo7taram”! if I didn’t know better, I’d say he’s making it up, but I know how very few of the people he calls friends know him enough to know he’s none of the three, because moltaza w gad w mo7taram is certainly not what got us here.
I wonder what he told his “friend” when asked a simple question like “weladak 3amleen eh?”, I mean obviously he did not reveal that he’s separated and has not seen his kids for a year now, since Beem barely said a few words and since Mocha was a newborn!! Has he no shame whatsoever! He’s congratulating a “friend” for being a father while pretending he’s one himself! People’s pretenses never fail to shock and appall me; his pretenses have a bigger effect.
It makes me angry when part of the truth hits me; that he mainly wants me back to maintain the image of the successful young man who has it all; the presentable wife, the adorable kids, and the career! As if I’m his silly watch or the expensive shades, like this is my worth, or my kids’ for that matter. His shallowness feels humiliating because I have more self worth than that, a self worth that I have come to realize once I stepped away and realized he was the reason I lost my faith in me, as well as in everything else. Ironic.
I can only hope it hits him one day when he does not find himself surrounded by people who feed his sick ego, when he can look in the mirror and see past those pretenses, that between him and himself he would know how he lost the wife and the kids and to what. Knowing him, I know he’d always find things to say to make him the good guy so that his image wouldn’t judge him. Nonetheless, I always hope that one day he would fail and somehow see himself for what he really is. A failure, as a husband and as a father.
November 6, 2008
I am not sure where this came from, but as I was driving home with both of my kids in the backseat when this conversation took place….
Me: na3am ya beem
Beem: (pointing at a Toyota) heya el 3arabeya de eeh?
Me: esmaha ToYoTa ya beem
Beem: heya beta3et meen?
Me: beta3et uncle elly saye2ha…
Beem: ana 3ayez arkabha
Me: mmm, bas e7na mane3rafsh uncle da a beem (thinking to myself, he’s almost got into all the car brands we bump into except Toyota, how perceptive!)
Beem: ana 3ayez arkabha ma3 pappy
Me: (WHAT!!!) bet2ool eh ya beem?
Beem: 3ayez arkab Toyota ma3 pappa! Pappa Ahmed, howa bey7ebeny wana ba7ebo we harkab ma3ah…
Me: (WHAT WHAT WHAT!!!! Think of something, QUICKLY!) bas bas ya beem pappa masmoosh ahmad!
Beem: la2 pappa esmo ahmed, ana 3ayez pappy ahmad…
Me: ya 7abeeby walahy masmoosh ahmad! Pappa esmo (my x’s name, obviously not ahmad), mesh enta esmak (his full name)… yeb2a pappy esmo (my x’s name)…
Beem: howa 3ando 3arabeya eh
Me: mesh 3arfa ya beem… tab enta mesh beterkab ma3aya fe 3arabeety, we beterkab ma3 geddo fe 3arabeeto we ma3 agga fe 3arabeetha we goody fe 3arabeetha, enta zehe2t wala eh!!
Beem: ana harkab ma3 Geddo 3arabeya Toyota
Me: (relieved he stopped referring to his dad) ok, hanshoof el mawdoo3 da ma3 geddo
Beem: (coming closer to me while driving, within my reach to hug my right arm) ana ba7ebek awy ya mommy…
Me: ana ba7ebak aktar….
OUCH!!! Who the hell is “pappy ahmad”??! I couldn’t see the road clearly and I started feeling like I was about to bump into the sidewalk with the dizziness i felt!
Later right before having lunch at home…
Me: yalla ya beem ta3ala 3ashan takol ma3aya
Beem: ana ha2akel nafsy
Me: tab ma 2a2akelak ana 3ashan matwasakhsh nafsak
Beem: bas ana kebeer
Me: tayeb ok, hat2akel nafsak bas el kebeer mesh yewa2a3 3ala nafsoh
Beem: ana hakbar tany lessa?
Me: (smiling) ah taba3an, hatekbar lessa in sha2 Allah
Beem: we hageeb 3arabeya Toyota kebeeeeraaaa
Me: (smiling even more) in sha2 Allah
Beem: we hakhaly geddo yerkab ma3aya feeha
Me: (on the verge of tears, and my voice choking) enta gameel awy ya beem, yala ba2a ta3ala kol
Beem: malek ya mommy?
Me: (running in his direction, and making a funny tone) ana hagy aklak 3ashan mesh takol akly
Beem: la2 ana hakol el akl kolo…
And we ate!
How does this kid come up with all those thoughts and ideas and puts them in words? And what’s with the Toyota obsession??!!
More importantly, what do I tell him when he starts focusing more on the fact that he’s missing a father? It hurt like hell when he said “ana 3ayez pappy ahmad” and “howa bey7ebeny”! he’s missing a love he never even received from my idiot of an x. moments like these make me resent my x much much more than I already do. I can only quote my own dad “A7MAQ”!!
And I thought my blog would be the only Obama-free blog! How delusional of me?! I can always count on my x to find ways to link us to international politics; I mean hello, he’s the same guy who managed to compare our situation to the Palestine Israel conflict!
This is what I found in my mailbox…
Dear (my name),”
Obama won the elections,,,that means even Americans can
accept a black president ,,,,which always was subject to never ever
status ,,,that means always there is a possibility of change to
better....if we want ,,,,rabena m3aky we yehdeky isa.....
End of day evil
goes away .....slmely 3la el awlad el gomal el wehos el kbeera
, we ya rayet lw 3ndek sewar gedid lehom teb3teha by mail with
rabena m3aky isa
Seven words: You give political awareness a bad name!
November 3, 2008
Yesterday before I dosed off a thought haunted me. I was secretly admiring my sister for maintaining her dental care while I tend to skip it when I’m too lazy to get out of bed! I mean between my sister and me, she’s definitely the lazy one, but not when it comes to remembering she had not brushed her teeth before going to bed. So, I decided to find at least one single thing I do on daily basis for more than three weeks in a row. NONE!!! Oh except for my Pepsi addiction, not my most glorious moment finding that out now, but I can reverse that for the sake of the argument!
I am not sure if it a good thing that I am not a person of habit generally speaking, because sometimes a few habits are good for us, like my sister’s good habit. It hit me that I have been hiding behind the motto “… the more I know about something, the less I wanna know about it”*! That arrogant statement has managed to enhance my short attention span and made it a valid excuse to let go of things (and sometimes people) too soon, not that I have any regrets (as arrogant as it sounds).
That was when the Art Therapist’s words echoed in my head “You’re lost, find you. Find something you’re passionate about, and do it, you’ll feel different”. Right now, I have no idea what it could possibly be, and I am not even that eager finding out because I have a strong conviction that I will end up bored in such a short time. I know it’s not passion that I lack; maintaining it is rather the trick.
My wall of shame has a variety of things I attempted to learn which I never followed through! It’s such an accomplishment that I have managed to maintain a blog for over a year now! Actually, I think I’m losing that passion too; I keep writing things and erasing them, I no longer like the sound of my words. The only reason I am still holding on to this blog is because it’s the only mirror I have to my thoughts that I’m afraid I’d get even more lost without it.
* A quote said by Winona Ryder in “How to Make an American Quilt”. The quote is not necessarily accurate, but I related it to it the moment I heard it YEARS ago.
October 30, 2008
October 28, 2008
Every time, every single time I find myself in peace with all the things I dislike about my current status, something happens –as tiny as could be- that troubles my peace!
Today I was cleaning up my yahoo account since it has more junk than actual emails, when I stumbled on three emails from the notorious jerk I am still married to on paper. Two of which are of job offers her thinks I might be interested in! seriously! Reading one of those descriptions I had a strong urge to reply with one crude and extremely inappropriate email. This person has such an amazing ability to awaken all the anger of which I thought I have let go!
The last email was a real piece of work though! It was with the subject “Happy Birthday to ME” and dated a day after his birthday. I overlooked a single detail, our wedding date was one day before his birthday, and it was a stupid sentimental thing I once thought of when we were in love, now it just disgusts me at the entire month! Anyway, el zareef el khafeef was wishing me a “saba7eya mubarka” and whining over the fact that “his kids” and I did not wake him up on his birthday with a call!! I can’t even seem to find the proper words to describe him anymore!!!!
And of course, just like the typical pseudo-good-doer he is, he had to end his email with a precious piece of advice: “please attend to amending Beem’s name in the birth certificate before he joins school to avoid further complications when military service if of an issue”. It’s a silly thing, and all the lawyers we have both consulted, in addition to those who work in the relevant official offices mocked him for his ridiculous paranoid thoughts. Thing is, my name is missing a “Mohamed” right before my family name in its written form in my son’s birth certificate, basically because the same “Mohamed” was missing in our marriage certificate; however, it’s present in my new ID. Big freakin’ deal!!!
I couldn’t help but get angry over his condescending tone, over his pretense –or perhaps belief- that injustice has been bestowed on him, over his silly joke, over his hidden –or not so hidden- implications that it’s ok for him to not be a part of his children’s life! The last one irritates me the most because I know I am totally ok with it, only I think they, my kids deserve much better than being discarded, even if by a piece of crap like him. Oh God, I’d wish they’d hate him, but I know how consuming hate can be… I just wish they’d grow up to be indifferent of him, and I hope it would bring him more pain than he could possibly overcome.
I find it ugly and hateful of me to wish him such misfortunes, but he left no kindness in my heart as far as he’s concerned. I do not wish him well, and I hate that I don’t have it in me to do so, but I am accepting it because I think it’s the only way to be ok with here and now.
October 22, 2008
Every time I sit and try to organize my thoughts or make sense out of the mess in my head is like I had opened a box of an old jigsaw puzzle, the ones with 500 pieces plus. A box I open from time to time, but before I start working on putting each piece into its place, I got overwhelmed with the number of the pieces and their small size.
I know each piece has its own unique place, I am certain; but I am not sure if I have all the pieces. It’s like with every time I had opened that box, I seem to have lost a piece, which means that the big picture, if ever completed, will be missing pieces.
The possibility of finishing that puzzle to find pieces missing scares me; because at this point, I have no idea if those missing pieces are forever lost, or just misplaced in my clutter of a life. Are they important pieces that cannot be replaced and must be found? Or could they be of average or even no importance and could be replaced with vague pieces that only seem to fit in the same void? Or must they remain un-replaced; be it as a reminder of things we lose, a lesson that I should be more careful, or that some things are meant to be lost?
Will I ever sit and finish that puzzle? Will the big picture, if ever completed, look anything like the one I have in the back of my mind? Or has my mind messed with those pieces and altered them in ways that would critically change that big picture? Do I even still have that big picture in the back of my mind like I think, or have I lost it and I am still unaware?
Like I said, I’m confused.
October 16, 2008
Around a couple of months ago, I started feeling like I was losing something. The concept felt rather confusing because I was convinced that the “loss” was not even mine to lose! I was not sure why it was being lost, and I was not even sure if I really wanted it to begin with! And even now, I don't have such answers.
Elizabeth Bishop’s “One Art” kept coming to mind and haunting me. I had strong urges to just post the poem on my blog as an acknowledgement of my “loss”, only a little voice in me kept arguing that there was no real loss, and that if there really was any, it has not yet been lost! Thanks to my short attention span and my wide range of commitments, I ended up forgetting about the whole thing.
In rare moments, I thought of that “loss” and it kinda made me blue because I never really understood why I even considered it much of a loss. Anyways, earlier this month, while talking to a friend, I realized that whatever my “loss” was, I was ok with the term and more importantly, I was ok with the fact that it was no longer there. I found myself accepting and moving on, and it felt good.
Today, something very small and insignificant happened that reminded me of all that. As minor as it was, it was a sign that accepting and moving on were the right things to do and that losing things is not always that bad, even if it feels that way at some point. And in that spirit, I decided to post the poem from my new perspective.
By Elizabeth Bishop
The art of losing isn't hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.
Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.
Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.
I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three loved houses went.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.
I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.
---Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident
the art of losing's not too hard to master
though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.
October 14, 2008
One of my two best friends has just given birth to the most beautiful baby I have laid eyes on (msA), and I couldn’t possibly be happier that they’re both well and healthy, alhamdulilah. Unfortunately however, I am trapped between happiness and fear, so I thought the only way I would enjoy that happiness is to babble a bit about my fear despite how sick I am of all the whining on my blog.
Those who know me know I am more of an optimist, those who know me well, know about the cynical pessimist who lurks shamefully in the shadows.
The pessimist is fed by worries and fears, by worst case scenarios that jump before my eyes when I hear or see something to my disliking. Luckily, the optimist takes good care of those horrible visions by confirming in a tone as soothing as possible “this only happens to other people”. Even when part of the problem had already started taking its toll on me, I hear my optimist self whispering “it will be ok”, “this too shall pass”, and sometimes when it’s a bit too tough, I get more in touch with my half-abandoned faith and hear phrases like “en ma3 al 3usr yusr” and “everything happens for a reason”
Needless to say, I have daily visions of dark nature that I choose to block for my own well being, most of which have to do with losing a loved one. My self-comforting strategy always worked.The one single time it did not work was when my x’s father died and I started having visions of losing my own father. Back then I was in my 6th month of first pregnancy and “hormonal” was the least to describe me. I used to spend nights crying so hard and praying it would never happen.
The wiser post-pregnancy and labor version of me knows that one day that horrible day will come; my optimist self helps me face that fact using the above strategy in addition to loads of denial.
Lately, a couple of incidents happened (including a huge increase in my father’s sugar level), which affected my defense mechanism. And because I am emotionally crippled (although it barely ever shows on my blog), I hid my worrying from my family and kept telling everyone who’s concerned about my father’s health that it was not alarming given how abusive my father’s eating habits were becoming lately. I kept saying it was ok and that it was nothing a good, well-balanced diet would not take care of.
Only I’m scared to death. Scared to the extent that I wish I could die right now before any of my fears would come true. I asked my dad how it went in my fakest casual tone and I hated his answer. I hate how vague his answer is. I hate that he’s so depressed over being sick that it could negatively affect his health even more. I hate how I can’t sit next to him on the couch and give him a chocolate bite because I am too freakin’ worried. I hate how he has become so silent because I know he’s worried too, even if it was not really that big a thing to worry about; I know my dad worries, I got it from him. I want to yell at him and tell him to cheer up already, that his sugar levels are decreasing and that he will be ok, he must be ok… because those things only happen to other people, to other fathers, not him.
Baba, please cheer up ba2a, balash nakad, 3ashan khater el etneen el mossagal khatar elly beykhalook ted7ak le7ad ma weshak ye7mar we teshra2!
October 10, 2008
A couple of hours later, he was jumping up and down and he kinda bumped his head, only really minor bumps that do not compare to that big bang, I ended up threatening him “law etkhabat tany, ana ely ha2oom adrabak” I know it’s eftera menny, but it was too much stress!
The same night he came and sat next to me and patted my arm and kissed it saying “mammy, enty konty 3ayaty leeh”
Me: 3ashan bemm 7abeeby et3awar
Beem: 3ashan ana kont ba3ayat
Beem: khalas ana mesh ha3ayat, ana kowayes ahoh
Me (hugging him so hard): ana ba7ebak awy ya bembemaya
Beem: ana ba7ebik ya mammy *kiss*
El walad da ezzay 7enayen keda!
Beem (rushing to me crying): mammy mocha kharbeshny
Me (I could hear mocha crying so loudly): wenta 3amalt feeh eh
Beem (so innocently): 3adeetoh
We were visiting a friend of my father’s since college, she’s practically one of my favorite aunties ever. She had her daughter and her two grandchildren, Mohamed (4 yrs) and Sarah (2 yrs) who are simply adorable; however, Sarah makes me wish I had a baby girl; she is just A.D.O.R.A.B.L.E.
Apparently, my Beem seemed to get along with Sarah a lot more than her brother, and he was very friendly and nice and brotherly to her it made me go awww. At some point while they were all playing, Mohamed decided it was time to show off his boy-ish side and started hitting Sarah…
My friend: Mohamed, matedrabsh Sarah, 3eeb
Beem (standing between Sarah and her bro): ta3aly ya Sarah waraya, matkhafeesh, (talking to Mohamed in a serious tone while pointing his index finger) matedrabsh Sarah keda tany, keda nooo, enta teb2a we7esh
Mohamed (rushing to his mom and on the verge of tears): mama bey2ool eny we7esh!
Me: awwww, la ya Mohamed, howa bas khayef Sarah tet3awar, mesh tez3al mennoh, howa bardu bey7ebbak, Beem, ta3ala 2ool le Mohamed mesh yez3al
Beem (walking slowly, and checking if Mohamed was crying for real, then deciding to pat him on the arm while smiling): matez3lsh ya Mohamed
Nanna: my mom
Babbba: my dad
Dadda: the maid
Boo: when he wants to drink
MMUMMM: obviously when he wants food, NOW… and also when he sees food!
Denndennn: when referring to horses and donkeys, he actually means deregen deregen and sometimes he’d come and pretend to ride my tummy while I’m asleep!
2ottaa: cat, and also any other animal really
Baabyy: babies, infants, and children
Bom: balloons and balls
Beeb beeb: cars
Hawhaw: when I tell him it’s not a cat, it’s a dog!
Batta: referring to Donald Duck!
Wawa: when he’s in pain or when he wants to get some extra attention!
H’s family owns a talking parrot that says too many sentences more eloquently that both of my kids and that actually sounds like H’s younger brother!! We were visiting last week and my kids were stunned to see a talking bird! Beem had fun feeding kookoo bananas and Mocha wanted to touch it so bad but they were scaring Kookoo and we were afraid it would bite them out of panicking.
H: 2ool salamo 3aleiko ya kookoo
Me (laughing): la ya mocha, da mesh 2otta, da kookoo
Me: H, mocha mesh beye3raf ye2ool el kaf fa mesameeh tatta
H: we aldagh fel waw Kaman!
Later when it was time to leave and we were saying our goodbye’s, out of the blue, Kookoo decided to say "salamo 3aleiko"!
The funny part is that yesterday H called saying that kookoo is saying tatta the same way mocha was!!
Yesterday in Beem’s nursery party, his teacher totally made him sing all the songs and say the alphabet with a word for each letter; otherwise there would have been no cake!! The look on his face as he complied was more of a death threat; I think she had it coming, she should have stopped after bon anniverssaire! During the singing however, he noticed that he did not have an empty plate in front of him, so he interrupted as he got up and grabbed one.
Later when we were singing right before we blow the candles, he kept blowing it during the singing and he thought it was funny that his teacher kept lighting it, or he simply enjoyed annoying her!
Later at the home party, I got him those candles that keep burning again even after you blow them, he had some fun time trying to blow them while we were singing him “happy birthday”. I think the cake had some saliva according to my cousin due to my “torture”!
As my cousin was leaving yesterday, we were all telling Beem to say bye and thank him for the gift (a toy gun with sniper light, thank you very much!), only Beem was too busy playing with H and her sister, so he kinda blew him off, that was when my cousin said “khalas, ana hakhod el mosadas beta3y”
A: hatoh, howa fein
Beem (rushing to get it): 7ader
A (stunned): …
Beem: ya daddooo, howa fein
Baba (laughing so hard): ahoh, adeeh le A?
Beem: la2 hatoh (and he gave it to my cousin without saying a word, then ran to his seat hiding the balls he was playing with) bas mesh hatakhod el kewar, ana khabethom!
A: tayeb! Ana haddy el mosadas le Mocha
I was laughing too hard to follow what happened next!
I had more in mind, but I can’t seem to remember any right now! More will follow when I do :)
October 9, 2008
After my last post, I had decided to stop ranting about my divorce that I actually told a friend of mine that next time I’d mention my x was going to be when I get a divorce.
I even planned on blogging about several things; like my Beem’s birthday party, which we had today… or the cute little developments I’ve been observing about my two pieces of cuteness (radya 3anhom awy el yoomein dool).
Sadly, I took back my word after being provoked by the Egyptian judicial system, which makes me feel like the law and its practice were made to ensure further oppression on the oppressed, Allah ye7ra2ek ya balad (which I don’t think is that farfetched given the rate of establishments catching fire lately!)
I found out that there was an appeal session for my divorce case. Apparently, my father stopped telling me because he sensed how irritated I get because of all the anticipation; therefore, he just told me the update after my lawyer informed him thereof. Of course none of my x’s representation showed, so it was postponed for further notification… until FEBRUARY!!! FEBRE-freakin’-UARY!!!
Ya walad el… 7aram 3aleiko ba2a… fe 7ad fel denya ye2ool keda!!! Four months ya kafara 3ashan e3adet e3lam!! I am left speechless… this is not justice, and if it is, then it’s very much retarded and stupid and… and… I can’t seem to find a decent word to describe it!!
Now it makes sense why he was calling to “reconcile”, and now it makes sense why he took it back! I am expecting his next phone call in February, at least the one to re-discuss the divorce and its terms since he might be demanding to see the kids some time soon.
Today was my son’s birthday parties; one at his nursery, and one at home with a very limited group of friends and family. Today was a good day and I won’t let a stupid court update ruin it, so here ends my rant.
Nonetheless, if anyone stumbles upon this and has an advice on a place I can petition against this stupidity and lack of common sense to a respective authority in hopes of actually acting positively upon something, I’m open to suggestions, even though I can clearly hear the cynic in me screaming so loudly “heya de masr ya 3abla”!
I will brag about my babies some other time I guess, so later!
October 4, 2008
He called to complain that my dad told his aunt that my kids will not be seeing his grandma because she’s a liar. He used his fake polite tone and he actually called me “7adretek” as. He claimed that he’s always refrained from offending me or my family. “mashy, ok” I kept thinking to myself, “let him say all he has to say as long as he’s at least pretending to be polite”, I let him go on and on, then came the moment where I had to ask.
I am too proud to ask I have to admit. A lot of those who know me (and not even that well) might have noticed that I usually refrain from asking too many questions; it’s partially because I was taught that it’s rude to be nosey, but mostly because I am too proud to come off as nosey. I was too proud to ask him what went wrong because I did not want him to sense my insecurity, it was too much victory for me to give him. Alas, I came to swallow my pride as I went on…
Me: olt khalas kol elly 3andak?
Him: aiwa, shokran ennek radeety
Me: momken ba2a as2alak so2al?
Him: etfadaly ya (my name)
Me: *hesitating one last time* I know it’s weird to ask right now, but indulge me, what made you first drift away?
Him: *very cautiously trying to figure out where the catch is* what do u mean drift away, mesh fahem el so2al?
Me: ya3ne before I got preg with Beem, we seemed fine, then by the time I was halfway through my pregnancy, you decided to have a girlfriend, I believe that was our fall, you kept lying to hide it and I kept finding out more about your lies, until I lost my trust in you, then you were in an affair during my pregnancy with Mocha, and you know the rest, so what caused it from the very beginning, three years ago?
Him: enty sa2alteeny abl keda zaman…
Me: yes, I remember, and you said it was because I did not cook enough and that the house used to get too messy with me being pregnant and lazy... ana fakra!
Him: we sa3etha ettarya2ty 3alaya we 2olteeely we ya tara heya tabakhetlak wala wadabetlak el beet?
Me: If I asked because I wanted to be rude and sarcastic, I would have said a lot more than that right now, but it’s not why I’m asking, so bear with me, and make it specific, an incident, something in particular that I’ve said or done! And you can also be very brief, I’m driving!
Him: ya (my name) enty esloobek mostafez… mafeesh ay ragel yesta7mel enno ye7es en merato mesh tay2alo kelma…
Me: ana batkalem 3ala abl ma eslooby became an issue!
Him: enty tool 3omrek keda, esloobek dayman ye7ases el wa7ed eno la yo7tamal we enno mommel
Me: (don’t argue, don’t argue, don’t argue… he’s expecting you to argue, he’s even asking for it, DON’T ARGUE!) OK
Me: ok, thanks for answering my question
Him: ya (my name) ahoh da elly beydaye2, lessa zay manty
Me: I asked you from the beginning to be specific and brief, so don’t expect a long conversation out of this question and answer!!
Him: fe 7ad yetkalem keda?!!
Me: ma3lesh ya (his name), ana eslooby keda, always been apparently!! And since I have not changed all that time, I don’t think I should bother changing now, at least not for you, so thank you very much for answering my question, 3ayez 7aga tanya?
Him: law sama7ty, madam bakalemek, kalemeeny zay ma bakallemek…
Me: here is the thing ya (his name), ana mesh 3ayza akallemak! Momken law sama7t ne2fel!
Him: ok ya (my name) rabena yehdeeky
Me: ameen ya rab
Him: kol sana wenty wel 3eyal be kheir
Him: esmaha wenta tayeb
Just thought I’d write it down for the sake of reference. Let it be known, I am a person with attitude, surprise!!
This is what it came down to, eslooby zeft! I won’t even dignify any of it by explaining or justifying where it came from, I’ll just leave it at that. So this is where it ends, it’s not worth dwelling in it any further.
I’ll go now and sink my bitterness over my wasted years in songs that go with the mood.