Monday, 21 November 2016
A Letter to Myself
I know this is probably strange but I want us to give it a try nonetheless.
Right, so where do I start? What do I tell you?
Sometimes I really wonder why I seem to forever confuse my own self. You are complicated but that's just how you are. You wouldn't be "you" without those little intricacies. Deep down, I know you're not a bad person at all. You have several good qualities that I thank God for, qualities and a vision that many people seem to have neglected in today's world. You also have numerous things that I wish you could stop and change.
Change. What a word! This is probably the one word that possibly describes you best. You are always trying to change things. You want to change your life, change your bad habits, change your mentality, change the way you see things. That's good, that's fantastic but we know how little stretched these changes go. I am well aware of how tired you are becoming of your own promises without fulfilment. Sometimes I even think that you've lost all trust and self-belief in yourself. That's sad and almost painful. But, your resilience and your refusal to give up is remarkable. Now, I know this is not you but it's a sign that the One Above is Kind to you and gives you chance after chance. Thank God, you take the chances when given them! You know, I see you're trying and I also see that some fruits are appearing with the work you're putting in. I just hope that you befriend consistency and keep it close.
I love that lately you are becoming more conscious of your heart, I also love how you love Him (swt). I love seeing you show that love. I love your goodness, I love your kindness, I love your patience, I love your love for Islam, I love how you love doing so much for people, I love your generosity, I love your thoughtfulness, I love your gentle demeanour, I love how you prefer going about your life unknown, not shouting your accomplishments all over. I love your shyness. I love your quietness. I love how loving you are. I love how childish you are. I love your seriousness. I also love how you know your problem areas, I love how you know your flaws, that you understand how far from perfect you are. But I hate your lack of steadfastness, I hate the DT but I understand that despite all the pain it has brought in your life.. it may well be a blessing in disguise. I wish you were more daring, I wish you took more risks, I wish you were better overall, I wish you spoke up, I wish you reached out to people more, I wish you had close religious friends.. or even just good friends.
You are a soft person. I feel like people can tell from a mile away that you're such a soft, 'miskeen' person even though you try to appear independent and unapproachable. Well, you are pretty independent but unapproachable? I doubt it, yet you like to give that image. I know you're trying to protect yourself, a kind of self-preservation technique. You are good at choosing who to allow in and who to keep at 'the door'. And, you know how hard it is to get close to you. You enjoy your privacy, you hate people trying to trespass the limits you have set. People are your test in life, not easy ey? You've had quite a number of funny/awkward/scary/stalkerish encounters, maybe more than the average but at least, you get to laugh about them now. I also like how you - finally - know how to handle these situations. You don't run away from them anymore, but you deal with them (yes, softly) but you deal with them yourself like the big woman you are.
I wish you were more bold though, that you said what was on your mind loudly and strongly. I wish you were more strong, stubborn and driven like your father. It seems that you've taken on your mother's personality and character traits almost like a copy. That's lovely and I hope you do become even more like her. Do you realise how incredible your parents' characters are? Yes, they are like the moon and the sun but each, individually, have been blessed with beautiful traits. You are very lucky to have the parents you have. Parents that are so concerned with their children's wellbeing, so caring, so loving, so protective, so generous, so approachable, so nice, so kind. Probably one of the greatest gifts of your life, no exaggeration. Your two parents are probably the only two people in the world that would take a bullet for you without hesitation. You love them beyond words could try to explain. I hope you keep being dutiful to them. I hope you become that child they love more every day. I hope you can help them as they grow older. I hope you are there for them just as they were there for every single step in my life. You must Libin, you must make their pleasure and happiness your life priority. Don't be like those who forget their parents, forget their goodness, forget the sacrifices they went through.
I spend a lot of time thinking how you can be a better person, a better Muslim, a better daughter, a better sister, a better human. Self-improvement until the day you die, that's how you'd like to live your life. But, can we talk about you love your sleep? Seriously, you need to work on that! Remember that time someone asked you what was your favourite hobby and you casually replied 'sleeping'? Yeah.. that was embarrassing. Please change that soon. You don't realise how many things you could have achieved with less hours spent snoozing. God help you. You supposedly want to change the world, you seem to have these amazing ambitions for yourself, you have these projects in your mind and you've had them for years.. when will you get a move on? I know you like taking each day as it comes, you don't like thinking too much ahead of time.. but come on, I want to see you achieve all these beautiful things.
Shy girl. You're slowly coming out of your shell in the public sphere, but you're still quietly shy. It's okay though, shyness is good. Being unnoticed is not bad. I appreciate that you don't want to attract unwanted attention and much rather prefer to do your stuff quietly. I find it funny how split your personality is and how playful (or annoying, depending) you can be. Your ridiculous sense of humour and prankster-ish attitude you carry with your loved ones, keep it. You have so much love to give, laughter and good vibes to share. Well, at least Abu Zubayr won't have a dull moment in your company or will he? You do appear quite boring to some people.. you've heard that said about you before but don't worry, I don't think you're boring. I think you're quite fun but each to their own. Talking about Abu Zubayr, I think you shouldn't mention him here because you will go on a tangent. Maybe another letter just for him? Maybe..
Sadly though, you're not really great at verbalising your emotions and I think that's definitely one of your top weaknesses. You try to be patient while keeping things that bother you in and you do that so well, and I mean *so well* that no one can even sense your discomfort or your pain. You much prefer crying in the darkness and pouring your heart out to Your Lord. You do often put a strong, bold face on to deal with life's blows but we both know that it's just a 'face'. It's like you don't want to show your vulnerability. You don't like worrying, in fact, you hate worrying. You also hate stressing. You actually do not show signs of stress (except for occasional minimal signs). It's all in the mind. Nothing or just little shows on the outside. You have developed an incredible coping system of belittling life's troubles, your brain now translates any worrisome news as 'not that deep'. But this is not fair on others, they misinterpret you. It can lead them to think that you don't really care or that you lack empathy or that you don't love them. If only they knew.. how far the reality is. You need to learn how to embrace all emotions, both the positive and negative ones. Allow yourself to be vulnerable to those around you. Show the real extent of your empathy, don't try to control it.. let it flow. Not everything in your life needs to be controlled.
The thing is that you are a very contained person, especially when it comes to negative feelings/emotions. You much prefer showing your happiness, your jolly attitude, your smile, your jokes. You like getting good news, you like sharing good moments with people, you like getting excited about good stuff but the moment it's something not nice, not good, not pleasant, not expected.. you just take that news, place in a corner of your mind and don't really show how it has impacted on you? This behaviour confuses people. You also have this nervous laugh where you laugh at the most inappropriate of moments. Ill-timed. This has happened way too often, and again, people can take it the wrong way but this is another mechanism to trick my mind. If I laugh, it sends the message to my brain that it's not 'a big deal' even though it may well be a big deal. Does that mean I am a coward? Does it mean I am avoidant? What does it mean? Why do I contain myself so much when it comes to negative things? I think the DT has something to do with it.
Honesty. You seem to find that notion quite complex to act on. Why can't you be honest with yourself? Honest with what you really want? Honest with your needs? Honest with what's wrong? Honest when you speak about your issues? Honest with other people? From your youngest age, saying what you wanted seemed like hiking the Everest. I remember that you much preferred either just waiting patiently or sulking than asking directly and honestly your parents about something you wanted. It worked sometimes, and other times it was just painful. It's just something you've grown up with, you've internalised it but now, as an adult, it's a handicap. I always tend to want whatever suits the other person, to make their life easier, to suit their schedules better, to benefit them more. Altruistic is a wonderful (and rare) quality in today's selfish society but in your case, I can't even qualify it as a good thing.
Ah, feels great to have finally completed this letter. It took many attempts and it certainly wasn't written in one sitting. I tried to think deeply, I tried not to exaggerate your qualities and I also tried not to downplay your shortcomings. It reassures me that from what I can see, goodness seems to outweigh badness. Alhamdulilah, this is purely out of mercy from my Lord and I do not attribute any good to myself. Truly, any good that comes from me or is seen in me is a favour from Above. And, any badness or weakness is a weakness due to myself, due to my desires, due to the whispers, due to the nature of this life. It feels good to be honest and review oneself.
I pray Allah guides you to an even more excellent character and exalted manners. Thank you for being you. And, try harder to achieve your dreams. Never give up. Keep striving. Become better. Get stronger. Keep smiling to the world. And worship Him beautifully, submit your life to He who has given you life. <3