Met my Deadline, the fanfare sounds hollow

(Current background on all my devices courtesy of Knit picks with slight modification by me)

So I finally met my deadline. Yay I got my two thousand word essay submitted on time, just barely.

When coming up to a deadline does anyone else feel the pressure building and building and building… no one? Just me? *flops down with a dramatic sigh*

In a way I think I normally thrive on that pressure. The tension builds up, and I bolster myself by looking forward to that feeling of relief and joy that I usually get as soon as the essay has been submitted. However today that feeling was nowhere to be found, I submitted my paper in turnitin and I just felt like okay. That’s good. You got it done… okay.

Things just rang a bit hollow. You know? I talked myself into doing a little happy dance, just because one of my commitments to myself is to celebrate milestones along the way.

I’m wondering if the recent chapter in my life’s story book beginning its conclusion overshadowed my joy. Im not sure because in terms of that I feel very much at peace and have a deep sense of clarity and acceptance.

Maybe I pushed myself too hard towards the end and my brain just needs a reset. That happens quite often. I mean as much effort as I put into the planning, and as much as that made theessay writing easier, I did still end up writing up about one thousand eight hundred of those words between the hours of 1pm and 3:52 pm this afternoon. That’s pretty radical when i think about it.

Hmm, okay I’ve got it now. Writing is such an illuminating process. My conclusion and introduction were both very rushed, and I have a sense that they may bring my grade down, however a late submission would mean an automatic 5% deduction of my mark. So I chose to submit on time. My takeaway? Even if you have a great planning strategy, you still need to factor in time to write, proofread, and submit your essay.

Ah it’s good to have gotten a handle on my internal thouggt process through writing this. .

All day I just noticed myself being a bit slower, slightly more thoughtful, so very aware of my need in front of my Rabb, and grateful for the small things. Whilst these are all good things not being able to put my finger on why was sloghtly agitating.

Now I can happily get bavk to be grateful for things like taking my kids to nursery and not needing to lug the buggy up and down three flights of stairs, my youngest bubba is getting to be a big boy 😭😭Alhamdulillah

Take care

Azeezat Adeola,

Fine words weave

P.s. another commitment to myself is to get some writing on this blog once a week. At the very least.

Week 1 ✅

A Yoruba Proverb

In a conversation with my mother recently she mentioned a Yoruba proverb.

Eni ti eyan ma ku han, eyan okin fi ara pamo fun

Why hide yourself from the ones you’ll be exposed to when dead

Consider this, when we die there are certain people to whom responsibility will fall. Those who ought to wash our (respective) bodies and prepare them for burial, those it falls on to take care of the rites, and organise things. In essence they are those who must take charge of our bodies, the ones to whom the obligations and, in effect our bodies now belong.

What can be inferred from the proverb is that these people have a stake in our lives, and a responsibilty towards us after we are departed. We can not hide ourselves from them in death, so logically it does not make much sense to hide ourselves from them in life.

If we feel the need to hide our problems and or struggles from our nearest and dearest, shouldn’t we also consider that at a certain point these will become their struggles too?

We are planted in the soil of our particular situations for a reason. (I firmly believe that this reason is growth, and developing a firm rooted understanding of our ultimate purpose in existence; to worship the Creator). With our ultimate reliance being placed on the Creator we can develop an understanding that support can come in from varying places and indeed people.

Reflecting, it dawns on me that I’ve made a lot of errors of late, and the one person that understands the most about how I feel concerning those mistakes, is the person I have made those errors against. What I’ve learned from this experience is that those around us can, if allowed, shed light on issues from different perspectives and help us to clarify our understanding of things, and in that way enable us to come up with a game plan for how we wish to move forward.

There is great benefit to be found in seeking assistance, and also from assisting others. As it is said, Islam is Naseeha, that is, the good advice. We can benefit from consulting with people. We still have the right to disagree, of course and that right is ours no one can take it away from us, but the blessing of having those around us who are invested and actually want good for us is that we get to make use of the resources they offer.

At times these people might be friends they may be family, the key is that they are trustworthy and want good for us, not only on a superficial level, and because of that are willing to point out to us, or indeed help us point out to ourselves where we’re going wrong or falling short of the persons we are/aspire to be.

In brief; Life is difficult at times. There is no harm in sharing part of that difficulty with those who will be there for your body after you have left it.

Stay Listening

Peaceful Parenting 💙🦋

My 23 month old is crying; his face is all crumpled up, and tears are streaming down his face. He’s got quite the pair of lungs on him, so the sobs that wrack his chest are pretty loud. I don’t immediately rush to shush him, or tell him not to cry, or even tell him that there isn’t a need to cry over small things. Instead I reach for the tools and skills I’ve been developing and learning from my peaceful parenting course. The ones that empower me to parent from a peaceful place inside. To not let the tides of my own emotions overwhelm the ship of my parenting. To listen to him crying, to be there with him in that moment.

The huge swell of panic that used to immediately overwhelm me, the need to just make him stop crying, at near any cost, that, alhamdulillah has gone. Sure it has not suddenly become the highlight of my day when my toddler starts crying and screaming, but slowly slowly I’m building confidence, finding pockets of peace and breathing room, to think and make decisions as opposed to just react. I’m learning to listen to his upset, and not have it rock me and my emotions. I’m able to put my trust in my Lord that my child’s behaviour right now does not mean in future he will be whatever it is I fear. Crying over sweets doesn’t mean he will become spoilt. Pinching somebody else doesn’t mean he will become a bully. It just means his behaviour is off track. It just means he is learning.

He needs my love, connection and listening most, when he is off track. It is exhausting work, any type of parenting is.

But, I’m able to recognise his cries now, for what they are. A way of letting me know that he feels disconnected, that he needs to reconnect with me. He as young as he is, is still subject to his emotions just as we all are. He also faces the challenges and tests that come with living life, and the best way I can foster intelligence both emotional and other kinds, and encourage him to learn ways to deal with these challenges, is to offer connection during these times, to stay listening, and to maintain the limits.

Traditionally speaking, I will be, and have been told, that his behaviour is something I should control, that it is disrespectful or rude for him to be upset by things (perhaps a certain household rule, or something I have told him he is not allowed to have), that I ought to punish him so that he learns to respect me. What I’m coming to realise, is that punishing him for expressing his need for connection serves only to push us further away from each other. The truth is, it is impossible to control anyone else. In fact at times even controlling ourselves can be a struggle. Rather it is Allah that is in control of all of the affairs of the heavens and earth.

One of the gems I picked up during the course which really shook me up, and made me contemplate, was this. My child as he is, is not yet accountable to Allah for his actions, at least not until he reaches the age of maturity. I however am. If his spilling a cup of water on the floor sends me into a rage, or initiates a huge over reaction on my part, then where does this show of injustice lie on the scale of parenting as an act of ibadah. Quite far from ihsan (the best) I would say. And very far removed from the person I want to be.

I have been giving a lot of thought to the woman I am, and the woman I want to be. My personal standards and the esteem I hold my soul in leave me unwilling to be reactive in my parenting approach. I want to be better, and do better. It’s a journey, and not an easy one mind you, but I’m ready and willing to put in the work bi’ithni’llah.

Gentleness only beautifies a thing

I think one of the things that we as muslims, especially muslim parents have to realise is that we must not be oppressors. Especially when it comes to our children, they have so many rights over us! They have been entrusted into out care by the Creator of the heavens and the earth.

And yes it’s a constant struggle (jihad ul nafs) to remain patient, and considerate, and respectful but it’s important to remember that raising a child is an act of worship (ibadah), it’s important to reflect and renew our intentions, to aim for the best we can do (ihsan), and to be humble respectful and not feel like you cannot apologise when you slip up asking forgiveness from them and also istighfar.

Look at our examples, look at the beautiful respectful and gentle way rasulallah salallahu alayhi wa salaam treated the young people around him.
One only needs to look to the seerah and hadith to see that he was extremely merciful, and patient when it came to children.

I’ll be the first to admit that I do struggle with this, so this really is a reminder to myself first and foremost. I pray Allah makes our hearts soft, and blesses us with patience, mercy, and compassion for all of the youth. Gentleness only beautifies a thing. 💕

‘”Don’t you like talking?” vs “Don’t you like keeping quiet?”‘

cropped-hadithe-steadfastness.jpgI think it’s important that we have regular conversations with ourself.

I look at it this way, my body, and my soul, and my mind. They are three different reflections, of me as I’m standing in front of a three-way mirror. Other people might walk by and pass and comment, but ultimately I’m the one standing in front of the mirror.

They, “the people”, society! say that we are often are own worsts critics, and this is true. But we can also be our own trumpet blowers too. It is important for me, and for you, to strike the right balance between this, the right balance that suits your own innate nature.

For me there’s a mental check list that my mind keeps hold of.

“What would please my Lord, my Rabb?” my mind asks.

“Doing this” my soul replies, hastily wanting to answer before my body does.

“Doing ‘that’!” my body butts in, not wanting to have it’s opinion trampled.

Ever patient, having been given reason by My Lord, my mind asks again, “What would please My Lord, the Creator (Al Khaaliq) ?”

“We could do ‘this’?” My body wants to compromise.

So does my soul, “We could do ‘that’ though”.

Again my mind asks, “What would please My Lord, Creator of all that is in existence?”

I reach a compromise.

My soul says, “I want to do ‘other’.”

My body says, “I want to do ‘other’.”

My mid says, “Okay, let’s do ‘other’.”

It can work out like this fast, or it can work out like this slowly, either way, as long as it works out like this I am happy, because “Other” is actually my name. As in I am another person. A different person from everyone else. Yes everyone is different, and that makes for some sameness. But in all honestly, if I sit down and take some time, that true me, that inner me, created by my Rabb, is the me that will come out.

So i guess in a way… I’m advocating patience.

:).

That’s it from me, take care.

Azeezat A.B.A.

Pst! (whispers) I wrote an article, following in my uncles footsteps… but don’t tell him 😉 It’s a “not so secret”, secret.

Life is what you make it…. sort of

I’m not a particular fan of Hannah Montana, but I have been known on the occasion, to sit down with my younger ones and watch a couple episodes. I may have even enjoyed those few episodes. 🙂 I do tend to listen a bit more to what the characters say, then what they do. Drama, is interesting and there are different mediums that are used to get messages across.

The first part of this title’s post, is from one of ‘Hannah’s’ songs. Life is what you make it.

To some extent I agree, how you approach things is important. The way you tackle something can make it easier or harder.

Take shopping with your parents for example. Too much mouthing off on your part can make the experience a very arduous one (speaking from experience 😛 ), but joking a bit and doing what needs to get done, maybe helping to get different products from further aisles can make the experience a far more fun and positive excursion.

For me personally, I still believe in what I refer to as Qadr, divine decree. Of curse it is important how you approach things, it’s very important. In fact that’s called intention. Our intention behind things matter. What’s our purpose?

That’s one of the questions I want to ask myself this academic year. What is my purpose? Why am I doing this degree?

To remind myself, I’ll probably look back at this post. So I might as well write down the main answer to my question.

First and foremost may intention is to please my Creator. I want to utilise the degree in a way that it can be counted as an act of ibadah. So in order for me to do that I have to make sure I do the best I can in this degree. I want to use it in a way that helps people. At this juncture I’m not sure if that means being a lawyer, or any other job that a law degree enables. However the degree will give me OPTIONS. I love options. They lead to opportunities 😉

I’ve been given a second chance at my first year, and I cannot afford to waste it.

Economically speaking, I have less supply (of resources) than I have demand (for use of said resources). So, I’m going to have to give some stuff up. It’s funny I’m still able to apply the basic rules of opportunity cost, and I can tell you why.

It’s because I enjoyed it. I really did enjoy it, because learning about it was fun. I approached economics with that mindset, it’s just something i need to make sure I remind myself. I do enjoy learning. 🙂

Okay, I’m going now, I have some stuff to do, and yes one of those things does include reading about Gibson v Manchester City Council (I actually remember the case name yay! 🙂 )

Take care party people

xxx

Deola

Packing

photo dictionary
Almost finished packing!

If you know me well, you’ll know that I quite dislike packing.

Anyone who helped me move out of uni can attest to that. It’s alwayas been somewhat of a chore for me. Today I took some free time and packed. I surprisingly enjoyed it. Do you wnat to know why?

I’ll let you in on the secret. 😛

I think I normally look at packing as a chore because, well…. I’m just a bit lazy occasionally. My mindset sometimes is…. oh this is so hard- so it becomes hard. You know what i mean?

This time I was like, its Ramadan, I have a bit of time, time is a trust from my creator, so lets do something valuable with it. 😀

I made about four piles. ‘Yes!’, ‘Maybe yes’, ‘No’, and ‘No Way!’

I changed the way I pack too. I like to roll my scarves up normally, so I used the same approach with my undies. 😛

Instead of packing up all compactly, I used a technique one of my aunts told my mum about. Things I’d normally fold in to fours, I folded into twos, and spread them out. It was a lot more fun packing this way, and the end result is, one fully packed suitcase, and (me still being me, the kid who used to carry bags of junk around) one big bag of maybes to look through with my mum.

Alhamdulilah.

I never knew packing could be so easy 😀

One lesson learnt, reflected on, analysed.

Now on to the next.

take care kids 😛