As a person who usually puts others before herself, I often find it difficult to remember to put myself first. What usually helps is surrounding myself with my people, doing a few of my favourite things with them.
My people are my brothers and sisters, my personal support network made up of 5 blessings disguised in human forms. Sometimes we will sit there and just talk and when physical presence is impossible, we revert to the use of WhatsApp. Whatever the time, they’re always on the other end of the receiving end of whatever life-changing or even random rambling that goes on. But it’s always us 6, the last ones to eat and the last ones to get up, laughing with each bite of food (making sure we don’t choke). But it’s always a sight, one that leaves my parents saying “get up now” but always with a smile. Because what’s better for parents than witnessing all your kids sitting, laughing and joking even if you’re talking about complete nonsense?
But with them, we talk about everything, the deen, the dunya and the trials and tribulations were currently facing. But whatever is being said, there’s always 5 sets of ears attentively listening. And sometimes we just strike a conversation about Marvel (always Marvel, everything goes back to Marvel). With every deep conversation coincides a light-hearted one.
Sometimes, we’ll go for coffee – usually just us 4 sisters (like right now) -, and sit for an hour to an hour and half (sometimes pushing two hours) laughing, talking, getting rid of our worries and coming up with solutions to our worldly problems. Leaving with cold but still drinkable (stone cold coffee is alright), a heart filled with light as one of them (usually the sisters because sometimes you just need your sisters) ends the conversation with a reminder, reminding you to remember The Most Loving, The Most Merciful who is always, always listening and that whatever happens is written by the best writer who knows me better and loves me more than my own mother.
And then there’s the company of a few friends, a small social circle but perfect to talk to about life’s bothersome worries.
And other times, I like to read articles by my favourite authors (Arthur K Richard’s and Dear Chereen), ones that are thought provoking and offer me a newly found insight of this world and the issues currently facing and provide me with clarity. Time to myself, that’s something I value, the silence of my surroundings.
But my favourite, is when when the siblings send an Islamic reminder and it reminds me that it’s all down to Allah’s plan. A reminder that what is destined will come for you like an arrow never missing it’s target, and the timing is perfect. And the reminder they send, the timing of that is something that leaves me saying SubhanAllah and Alhumdulillah. And truly, people, my siblings and my closest friends, and the words of amazing writers are blessings.