Monday, April 23, 2007

The blog of Small Things

*Been stewing for a while. and no, I'm not about to go buy a Kenny G music-to-slit-your-wrists-by Special Holiday edition. This is pure self-indulgence. Insert disclaimer of choice here.*

“Welcome to the pity party. So pleased you could join us. We have trays of masochism and punch so good you’ll cry. Should you be so inclined, a selection of razors and blades are laid out on a table near the DJ box, individually wrapped for your protection. Please enjoy yourselves, but not too much. Hope you have a wretched evening.”

I left the park last weekend. Packed the accumulation of a year into stackable cardboard boxes and took the highway to the East Rand, where I will now spend most of my weekends.

*mandatory benoni girl joke*

Q. What do you call a Benoni girl in a white tracksuit

A. The bride

Moving’s never easy. When you’re strapped for space, you suddenly realize just how much of all that you value is clutter. Books get heavier, cds stack up awkwardly, jackets bulk up, hard-drives hulk like museum dinosaurs.

One of those weekends too, where tragedy laid a pall over my family when my uncle and aunt met with an accident on their way to Port Shepstone. My aunt lost the baby she’d been carrying for the last 7 months. Both her and my uncle had to have one of their hands amputated. I’ve never been good with grief. Losing the people you care about around you makes you no expert. I never know what to say, except when I think of my own bereavement and all I can say is, “`it’s hard, and you will feel self-pity. You will bargain with your God, and you will be angry. That is what it was like for me until the resolve to accept sets in. You’ll become too tired to be angry. Its time to resign yourself, because ‘Why’ sometimes remains one of those questions to which the answers will not leave you satisfied.” I stopped asking ‘Why’ a long time ago.


I feel like-

I’m being strained through a colander.

Like I’m being forced to spread and separate, until I’m only reconstituted Saaleha.

With Work, with Home, with Study and Family issues, I’m being stretched.

I’m walking around; static mess, this field of scratchy unintelligible sound drowning out my clarity, slaving me to disorganization, inefficiency, procrastination.

My eyeballs are lubricated with seeded strawberry juice, the insides of my eyelids lined with a fine grade of sandpaper.

It doesn’t help that I haven’t been to gym in two/three months. The monthly bank debit glares at me disapprovingly, judging me, poking breadsticks at the extra-Saal.

I also had a pimple on my chin, so large it deserved a christening and its own facebook profile.

I was heavy inside. The kind of heavy that has you choked up. The kind of heavy that makes you a gut bag of lachrymal fluid filled up till the skin stretches and shimmies. One muscle twitch and you’re bleeding salt all over yourself.

And I sat there looking at my phone, scrolling through my phonebook and not knowing who to call.

So many friends. So many big-hearted, kind, beautiful people. So many I love, so many I would die for. Why, when I fill up with heavy, am I so uncomfortable and reluctant to ask them for their ears?

And when I do choose to share, I’m left feeling like someone sneaked up behind me and pulled down my pants.


ok. all done now.

Beeg deranged smile. :)


saaleha said...

just realised, "asking people for their ears," is a deranged statement in its own right. hmmm...maybe with some baked beans and a nice orange juice.

Fatima said...

i know how you feel.

i went through that in december with my bro-in-law and i'm still in shock over your uncle & aunts' (i'm so amazed at their strength and sabr that it humbles me)...and i've said some ridiculous things over the past week - but that's how i am when tragedy strikes.
i cover up my feelings and hide it with my stupidity and say things i often don't mean. i also never know what to say and how to comfort a person as i suck at these things. i would've been a bad shrink.

things are tough at this time for you, and nobody will understand it unless that person goes through it with you or has been through it before.

and then you also don't know who to call, because then you don't want to burden people with your problems (that happens with me too).

i wish i had met you under different circumstances, but its times like these that pull people together.

you have my number, my email, my address (which some stalkers would kill for *just kidding*) so you know, if there is anything...absolutely know how to find me :)

(on a lighter side, the notes were an excuse to meet you :P i could've gotten them any other way :P pure selfish behaviour of fati displayed here)

Fatima said...

and now...for a big hug


Priya said...

there are times when the world conspires against us..wants us to be shot down even before we can protest...then we get inspired to share and there are so many people ready to pick us up again.
"face the sun and let the shadows fall behind you"- marian proverb

SingleGuy said...

yIt's quite shocking to hear about you aunt and uncle, and the loss of the baby added to the loss of limbs is going to be difficult for them to work through.

But you will be there.

Sometimes extra-ordinary circumstances leave us confused and over-stretched, but remember, Allah would not burden us with more than we cannot carry.

And it helps to share. But it's also takes bravery to share. Sharing does not mean you are weak. I don't know you, but I get the impression that the same people you would die for, would die for you. Listening to you share would not be a burden for them, but an honour.

And if they won't.....Fatima will.

But would I.

Zahira said...

*Zahira guve saals HUGE hug and enuf of her shoulder to use as she wishes*
we pple on the blogosphere are always around to listen and share

Sofi said...

Big Hug my baby. keep blogging if it'll help lighten the load :)

but above all, there is always someone there, waiting for you to share if you need to - but only if/when youre ready. sometimes it helps talking about it and other times no amount of talking can make any sense of whats going on. so its better for you to decide what works for you and what you can cope with.

you and family are going through testing times..........Ia i know youre brave enough to fight the waves. xxxxx

Muhammad said...

Sheesh Saals, it isn't enough to say sorry I guess. I know by now you'd probably be feeling okay, no doubt the catharsis above helped in that.

I know that a lot of people feel exactly the way you do, I know I do, only you seem to put it so damn eloquently, I caught myself half empathising and the other half going "wow."

As I said before though... we're all rough ugly rocks just being churned in this huge machine called life, rubbing against each other until we're gleaming and polished.

Friction, and how we deal with friction makes us who we are.
Tears are lubrication.



Nazneen said...

It's not about what you say, it's about how you make them feel.

In life and loss, words are often inadequate - regardless of the size of your vocabulary. Empathy has its own language and your aunt and uncle need that from you more than any words of comfort.

Perhaps us humans have a fatalistic way of looking at things by saying it was God's will, etc. but in the end that's the only answer we arrive at. There are no reasons that we can instantly determine as to why these things happen. One can only pray and trust.

Your family has a long recovery road ahead. Rehabilitation of such wounds (mental and physical) does not happen quickly. Inshallah, the process will go smoothly and your aunt and uncle, as well as those who are helping care for them, will receive the support of all family and community members.

bibi-aisha said...

jfSaals sweety, all I can say is I cannot possibly imagine how you & your family feel, but my duas are with you

Ruby :) said...

im really sorry to hear about your family tragedy. making dua that allah make it easy on all of you.
I understand how u feeling, sometimes there isnt anyone that you want to burden, and you just have to put on a 'happy' face and stick it through... hang in there!
btw, im being a typical indian now: when we heard about the accident,my dad said this couple are far family.. so we may just be related!

deadcrab said...

A white tracksuit!!! hehe, nice one sparky..

Just remember one the words of Ali G ... "WeStSIdE is da bEst!!" :P

taqdeer said...

hehehe, very funny :)

Q. What do you call a Benoni girl in a white tracksuit

A. The bride

Lol, that's probably the truth !

Major_chip_hazard said...

It's always difficult to accept when things go wrong.I cant accept,I too like Fatima bottle it all up and become 1 huge emotional wreck because of it.I lost a very close cousin 2 years ago in a car accident,I cant get over it!Everyone says its a long time now move on,I even stopped driving!!Im slowly breaking the mould,but its very difficult.Time heals all,patience rewards in time,acceptance brings peace of mind & heart.Something I learnt over my period of grief!InshaAllah Almighty Allah releaves you and all others suffering from whatever grief or pain we are going thru.

Profane. Profound. What's your poison?