Ripping a Band-aid off of your soul.

You don’t want to be you tonight. For a change, you want to be someone who is capable of following through with their goals; someone who does not again and again fall to the same old useless pattern because they’re stuck in their familiar comfort zone.

Today, you want to be someone who, after they’ve decided what they wanted, would conjure up the sufficient patience to carry it through and the courage. You lack the courage.

You have a clear view of what you want, and by now you think you know just how to become that- how to achieve what you’ve been dreaming of for so long. Yet you find yourself stuck. Maybe not literally, maybe you’re moving, but it is SO slow that for the naked eye -including yours- you’ve only been tottering in place. Which is even worse.

It is true what they say: when you change, you destroy a part of who you are. No matter how useless or bad that part of yourself is, it is still you, and it was in you for a reason. A long time ago, your soul has invited this part inside. But it’s not your soul’s fault. At that time, maybe it was the only visitor, and you were so lonely that your soul agreed to let it in.
After all, your soul is only looking after you. It would never have allowed such a dangerous thing to enter the most sacred and sensitive parts of you had it known that it would turn from a temporal visitor to a clinging full-time resident. It most definitely would not have let it in had it known it would become excruciatingly hard for you to kick it out.
When it first arrived at your soul’s doorstep it looked week and harmless, but you unknowingly fed it well and helped it grow so powerful. Now, it had entitled itself for deserving as much right of you as any other part of you rightfully does.

Time in time, you forget that it was once only a lonely beggar knocking feebly on the doors of your heart and mind. You forget that had things been different, you could have never opened the door. But of course the idea is most ridiculous; who would have you turned out to be without it?

No matter how much you resent it, despise it, and loathe the nonliving pieces of it, you know that without it you would not have turned out the way you have. Indeed, you like how you turned out- minus it. As hard as it may be to admit, you owe it. You know it’s the truth, and you hate it even more for that.

So what can you do? If there is a book or a movie about a villain posed as a resented full-time visitor, hurriedly refer to it. You’ll need all the advice you can get. It is a battle. You discover as you try to get rid of it, that it had glued itself to your soul ever so slyly, and you cannot risk tearing it off because you are uncertain of how much of your soul you would lose forever with it.

So it became like cancer, if there was such a thing as a needed cancer. For that, you must become your own chief surgeon. You alone must decide whether it is safe to pursue the operation, or if it is too late. You alone must calculate the advantages and the potential costs. Patients have it easy, they’ve got someone to blame: the hospital, the doctors, the equipment… But you? You are the patient and the doctor. You are the ailed and the healer. It all comes down to this: You have a Band-Aid in your soul, are you willing to rip it off?


See No Lies..Write No Lies

Some things are hard to write about. After something happens to you, you go write it down, and either you over dramatize it or underplay it, exaggerate the wrong parts or ignore the important ones. At any rate, you never write it quite the way you want it to.

Sylvia Plath


This quote touches on an issue I struggle with whenever I try to put my emotions into words. I think to myself, did I really communicate what I’m feeling or is it fiction that I’m writing right now?

I realize that it’s only my emotions we’re talking about here, and since I am not The Dalai Lama or Oprah, it is not a big deal. But what does that mean when it comes to reporting news?

Can one really literally describe whatever he or she sees in real life for others to experience the same situation?  Would the reader’s experience be similar to yours- the writer’s, or would it be more or profound? Do you choose to make it less intense? I am not talking about intentional, conscious manipulation of word choice of course, I’m simply casting doubts on the journey which news take on their way from our minds onto the paper or the laptop. Does our subconsciousness play the antagonist in this scenario?

To feel is not is peace of mind.

For once, she won’t talk herself out of it. For once, she is going to allow herself to BE sad, to FEEL hurt and ACT out the anger.

More than often, she questions her feelings. Tries to justify them, but this time she will allow herself not to.

She excuses herself from the dinner table and heads up to her room. Slowly, she closes the door and deliberately heads to the drawer beside her bed. She takes out her journal and finds a comfortable position.

If she is going to feel, she might as well do it right.


He’s irrational and unfair.

He has this ability to get under my skin and irritate me to the extreme. With only words, he can bite into my skin and push me to my breaking point.

I wish there was a projector that can show people exactly how their words affect everyone around them. Maybe then, everyone would really start paying attention. Not just to their words; but to the tone, attitude, and subtle yet clear feelings that they attach to them.

I HATE feeling things intensely. Some say it’s what makes us human, but feelings are SO overrated. I always like to remember that episode in The Fairly Odd Parents when he wishes for his feelings to be removed and becomes a much relaxed cool kid. That episode strikes me as pure genius.   

Feeling things intensely means giving someone else the power over you. I want to not give him so much power over me. I want to NOT care.

But I know I do, because I hang up on every word he says. I admire and despise him at the same time. I love and hate him at the same time. I miss and fear him at the very same time. A roller coaster of emotions.

His presence echoes inside my head. I hear his words over, over, over and over again. Ringing. Ringing. Replaying. Like a song. Over and over again. 


She closes her journal, takes a deep breath and stares blankly ahead feeling eerily relaxed. She makes a mental note to one day write about writing, and how it can soothe and numb humans just as powerfully as drugs. Not today though.

As she lies down staring at the ceiling, she wonders if feelings things intensely could count as a sport, because she is exhausted.


“A Very Short Story” by Ernest Hemingway: A Review

They loved each other, and were going to get married. Abruptly and without common introduction, Hemingway tells the story of Luz; a nurse who tends to injured soldiers and “he” the wounded soldier she falls in love with. The story does not start off with the usual description of the characters and setting, instead it begins with the couple’s decision to get married. They do not marry, however, because he left to America under the understanding that after he gets a job Luz will rejoin him and they would marry.

He doesn’t have a name, and the ambiguity of his character serves to fit the general description of a passionate courageous young man who falls in love with a nurse who was working in the hospital at the time of his war injuries.

Hemmingway does not introduce us to the characters properly and skips chunks of time between events. The character He leaves to America, suddenly we find Luz making love to an Italian major and she breaks things off with him- the American soldier, but never marries the Italian major in the end.  He never writes back to her, and we are left with knowing that he indulged in an affair.

The setting of the story plays a great role. Their love first begins at the time of war. They are confused, thrilled, and optimistic when thinking ahead. The temperature is consistent with their state of love. Just like in times of war, everything is fleeting and circumstances can change in a heartbeat. At the beginning they were in the hot Padua, they felt as if they were already married but they wanted to “contain” it. Later he travels back to America, far away from her. It cools down their relationship, and as follows the weather is cold and rainy.

In the end we are despaired as we see them slowly abandon their values; Luz, breaking her promise and giving up on a chance of true love and him sinking into a quick cheap affair.  We are left with a despairing feeling of not so happy ever after. Although the story is short and brisk, we can’t help but feel with the characters and wish things would have turned out differently. In “A Very Short Story”, Hemingway shows a gloomy view of relationships in the time of war. Their relationship is just like the war in ways, at its time it seems like it’s inevitable and overpowering but no matter how it ends, it does not end well.


Football Players as Government Officials? God I Hope Not.

I recently read an article written by my colleague and friend Reem called Football Players, Why Not Government Officials?. I loved her writing, but it was not specifically the talk about football that got me intrigued, since I don’t care for sports.

It was her apparent and overflowing sense of love and patriotism for a country that cannot provide as much as security for its citizens, that truly captivated me.

Me on the other hand, I wish sports would be banished from my country. Our two most famous football teams, instead of uniting the people in the street who love the game, further separate them in the name of sheer and biased loyalty.

In my case however, the government is a big supporter of sports. Why wouldn’t it be? When the people rage the streets for a lost game instead of when Jalila Khamis -a human rights activist- is imprisoned without trial. And why wouldn’t it be? When people get into fights after arguing which coach is worth of bringing to which team instead of arguing whether the government could have prevented cutting off Sudan into two.

Sports in my country is the government’s way of drugging souls. But to be fair, when one is living in a country that can hardly be called a proper one, it is easy to get seduced by the distractions laying around, and our self serving government cannot be blamed for encouraging that.

Zainab A

I have to believe in a world outside my own mind. I have to believe that my actions still have meaning, even if I can’t remember them. I have to believe that when my eyes are closed, the world’s still there. Do I believe the world’s still there? Is it still out there?… Yeah. We all need mirrors to remind ourselves who we are. I’m no different.”

Memento (2000)

The Mother

Ayesha’s mother died 16 days ago, but she hasn’t cried yet.

The mother’s death was not a surprise, at least not a sudden one. She had been suffering from ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) for eight years now, and as the years went by the symptoms worsened. In her final year, the mother just laid in bed, unable to move or speak, just breathing.

The mother hated hospitals and wanted to be near her family; so medical equipment was brought to the house, and a nurse was assigned to her 24/7 assistance. Her children, who are not really children because Ayesha the youngest of all seven is almost 21 years old, gathered every night to have dinner around her in the room. Years back the mother was able to talk and move her hands, but when I visited their home two years ago, she could not greet me back.

They were not very close, Ayesha and her mother. Although she likes to blame the mother’s illness for driving a wedge between them that was not there before, the truth is, they never got along.

Ayesha’s father and four of her siblings live in other countries, but they all came back home for the funeral. All, except the one who lives in Germany. It was the first time for the family to be in one house since Ayesha was in elementary school, and it felt almost as if their mother could not bring them together when she was alive, so she died to unite them.

Sixteen days have passed, and Ayesha hasn’t cried yet.

Many said she is shook, in a trance, or still not mindful of the tragedy. But I know that is not the case.

Ayesha is not shook or in denial, she is simply angry. She is angry at the mother for dying, and angry at herself for feeling angry instead of sad. By dying, the mother has cheated.

The unspoken one-side agreement was for the mother to get better, so that Ayesha will get another chance at having a normal mother daughter relationship. It was supposed to be a mutual effort.

Every night at 2:00 am, Ayesha would come to the mother’s room, sit on a chair in front of her bed and just talk to her lifeless living body. She would talk and talk and talk until pretending to have an imaginary conversation hurt and she would cry. The next day she would do the same thing again.

But somehow, without any warning, the mother decided that she did not want to try anymore. She gave up. She took the easy way out. She cheated. And that made Ayesha very angry.

Of course, I think the real reason why Ayesha is angry is because allowing herself to feel sadness would mean letting her mother go. Anger gives her something to hold on to. So, instead of facing the departure of the mother she’ll focus her energy on the blame and the pain. Somehow that will hurt less.

One day though, Ayesha will cry. I am sure of it.

Frank’s voice over trailer for The Dark Knight Rises.

Close friends of mine already know this (exasperatedly I might add): I am a Dark Knight fan.
I stumbled upon this hilarious Dark Knight “trailer” voiced over by a sarcastic British puppet.

I’ve seen it a dozen times now, and it still continues to make me laugh.
I realize it may not funny for many, but it has the perfect combination of elements to make it my favorite video of the month.

First of all it’s about The Dark Knight Rises. And as if that weren’t enough, Frank talks in a beautiful British accent and he is as sarcastic as they come. Not to mention the trailer includes a Shawshank Redemption reference, and voices my opinion on both the young actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt and the villain character Bane.

Yes, I’m a geek for Batman.

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