Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The limitations to my positive thoughts

Unlike the past week, I woke up today feeling this negative energy settling on my chest. I tried to shake it off, chose to wear a bright outfit but ended up wearing an extremely dull one. To many of you, those two lines did not make sense what so ever, but for someone who expresses their inner peace with the outer appearance, this meant one thing: sh*t is going down! I went along my day trying to shove away those thoughts and feelings but the voices in my head won the battle and something did happen; my friend's grandmother passed away. After pushing all my strengths towards comforting my friend on this devastating news it suddenly hit me: I won't be seeing my grandmother Bodour for the first time sitting in her chair at her salon, at her house, calling me to eat boiled beets with her (something I never ate until last winter when she forced me to try them).  She won't be there to complement the way I dress. She won't be there to criticize my loud voice and laughter. She won't be there to forbid me from having anything but her home cooked meals... She won't be there. She won't be there. She won't be there. She won't be there. She won't be there .She won't be there. She won't be there...

I'm trying to look at this differently, the way I try to look at other things. I'm trying to find the good part in this but my selfish human conscious is preventing me to feel it. The only thing I can think about is that I hope she really is in a better place, enjoying her time with the people she always wanted to be with. 

This is to you tayta Bodour, tayta Fatat and all my loved ones who I truly love and now deeply miss...


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Bodour: Full Moon(s)

apologize my dear readers as for the past week I was completely out of touch due to the unfortunate passing away of my habibti grandmother Bodour - May her soul rest in peace-. She was a strong woman who fought to raise her children all by herself in this cruel, cruel world.

I would like to take this chance to thank each and everyone of you who supported me with their kind words and hugs through out the past week. 

With the loss of every person close to my heart, I try to confront my disbelieves and find true comfort  in the words I write. This time, I'm going to share a note that I've written more than two years ago on the loss of Sima -May her soul rest in peace-, a lively friend I met at the American University of Sharjah .

Since I was a little girl, I was always taught that as there is a beginning there is an end to everything and everyone. They've always 
spoken of death as something unpredictable and unavoidable…Something that will eventually has its hands on you.
Of course, I am here not to object on death. But I wonder, why is there a book on how to peel a banana in three steps and not one sentence to guide us through the loss of a beloved one!! Yes, I’m someone who can never understand the concept of death. I want to be in comfort with death. I see people around me repeating words like: “it’s ok, this is God’s will.” But why do I, a strong believer (I would like to believe), still tremble whenever death is ‘around’? Why am I, up until this day, still not OK with losing a beloved someone…a friend..a teacher...a grandma..a cousin…an uncle…?

‘They’ say it gets easier with time. That 'soon' you'll cope with the non-existence of that person anymore.
Is it only me, or this does not make any sense what so ever? I’ve finally come to the conclusion that by saying this, we try to comfort the little voice inside of us saying that no, it’s not ok…You just lost someone so dear to you and it’s ok if you cry and curse. But we want that voice to go away because truth, truth just hurts. And so, we look around for the other people in grief and try to help them with the ‘wise’ words we’ve been taught through out our lives.

But at the end of the day, we cannot help but think of the loved ones we lost and sob in tears...

Allah, please grant me the strength that I terribly lack and need.

May Allah protect all the loved ones in my life and yours. 

Reading this today I see that my perspective on death has only slightly changed. Like any other person, I still dislike the concept of losing the sight and voice of someone you love but I accept now that people like 'tayta Bodour' deserves another chance to live happier days with people she once  talked fondly of...

I pray your safe and happy wherever you are tayta, surrounded by the people that brings you comfort... Such comfort that you've always managed to give your children and people surrounding you. 


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Unleash the Politician!

Politics is everywhere. No, I'm not talking about the sort we watch on T.V., read on newspapers, check online or so, I'm talking about the type concerned with 'personal politics'. The kind of politics that handles day to day situations between family members, friends, acquaintances, work, etc. 

In the past couple of months, I've been going through many changes on all levels. Trying to figure out ways to get through my days with minimal head and heart aches but unfortunately sometimes, at some occasions, I fail miserably. This practically happens when I misunderstand people or mostly be misunderstood, which brings me to my biggest concern: why do we lack transparency in our daily transactions? Why is it that most of us perceive transparency the wrong way? And why is transparency in communication is mostly associated with negative thoughts and feelings? Many questions left me sleepless last night trying to find the best solutions and answers. Hours later the answer was flashing on my forehead: politics. You got to deal with things the way any politician would deal with his or her daily situations.

After I congratulated and patted myself on the shoulder for the epiphany moment I went through, another question popped up, now what? What shall I do in order to make my life and others' lives easier? Do I just play it like I'm expected do?... Needless to say, I did not like this approach so I tried to shift my thoughts towards something else. I took deep breathes, tried to focus, really focus on what do I want and realized that I cannot expect others to understand me as I am if I don't. I can't expect them to accept my transparency if I don't. So here you go: I hereby confess that sometimes (ok maybe most of the time) I don't accept transparency directed to me the way I should and that's mainly because I expect people to be transparent the way I know and understand what transparency is. 

So from now on, I will - not only try - be as accepting to others words and actions towards me as much as I want them to react to my words and actions. If I can do it, trust me you can! Let's all pull out the good politicians within us and create an understating atmosphere!


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Reminder to Self: Live your Life with Gratitude

First of all, I would like to apologize for not posting this earlier. I was facing some technical problems... 

Second, Thank you! Thank you all 1000+ readers. You are the reason why I will never stop voicing out. I hope that my words are reaching every single one of you in a way or another. I love you all and wish you and your families Eid Mubarak. So, although I have a lot to share with you this week, I decided to give you a mini break to enjoy this long weekend with your loved ones, away from my thoughts and words!

Oh! One last thing, be thankful for the people you are surrounded with and the things you have. Your family and friends provide you with the love and care you need everyday in different ways and actions that you are mostly oblivious to…

So, say thank you more often and spread the love ^_^!


Thursday, October 18, 2012

Tick Tock, the right timing is here!

A couple of days ago, while heading back from Dubai to Abu Dhabi, I had the chance to think about something that has  bothering me for a while now. It has come to my attention that I try SO hard to defend myself, my thoughts, my actions, my beliefs, etc. It's not teenager talk, I don't want to just *insert annoying teenager tone* 'do whatever I  totally feel like totally'. But rather, I started thinking about several incidents where I allow people to push me towards babbling reasons to why I've done something the way I did and why it wasn't my fault and so on... 

So, I started raising questions: When should I just shush and not say anything to people in front me? when should I just node my head and work the muscles on my cheeks up? And so I thought, maybe it's simply when my explanations and justifications are not needed because whoever is confronting me is not really interested nor waiting for what I have to say. They are just here to shout out whatever they want to say and leave. But then another thought joined the ongoing  train of thoughts: sometimes people come and raise questions about things you've done and said wanting to hear what you have to say. In these cases, I think it is safe if I start saying what is on my mind and explain how things led to another... right? maybe?!

I went on and tried the above scenarios for 4 days but it did not work for me! No they did NOT! I couldn't just take the blame for things I haven't done or said! I couldn't just stand there with my mouth shut. I needed to defend my thoughts, my words and my actions! I needed to stand up for myself and I wasn't going to wait for someone to do it for me. But, unfortunately, this did not work either. Saying whatever is on your mind at the happening moment is not always the right action to take. So again, I went back to my  journey of finding the perfect way to "voice out" and I figured: it's all about the timing! And trust me, holding yourself back to find the perfect timing is NOT easy! Oh not at all! But I'm learning and taking by the advice to take deep breaths all the time and deeper breaths at other times.

Until then, I can assure you one thing; I, Mariam El Chami, will never suppress my thoughts. Never.


Thursday, October 11, 2012

When Your Face is Stuffed in the Dirt

Ever felt like you're the underdog? When no matter what you do or where you reach is never enough? When you  give and give, try and try, but never seize to get their attention? I know I've been through this and more. I've always felt like I'm competing for the "grand prix", for their "oh wow Mariam! You did it!"... And by "their" I mean absolutely everyone. My family, friends, people on the street, anyone

There is nothing wrong with wanting people you care about to see what you're doing, to feel what you have to go through everyday to get to where you are, but it is when you wait for their appraisals that you stop living, being and doing anything for yourself. Your complete focus shifts towards the wrong direction. This is when you allow negative feelings and thoughts of frustration, defeat, disappointment and unfulfillment to penetrate within your soul, mind and body. At this point, whatever you do will never make you feel good about yourself. Whatever goals you reach will never give you the thrill. You will simply deprive yourself from celebrating  every single time you rise because you'll be blinded by what people are saying about others and not you. 

Last weekend, I heard a sentence that caused blood to rush through my entire body. "No one can take away your achievements". I remember I was on the cross trainer at the gym and I actually paused and stood there with thoughts flowing and tears pouring. The mini voices in my head started screaming: YES! YOU ARE BEING FOR YOUR SAKE. YOU ARE DOING FOR YOUR SAKE. It IS ok if a day passes and you don't get a pat on the shoulder because not all people express what's within like you do.

So, next time you feel like you are falling apart and your face is stuffed in the dirt know that time has come for you to do more, give more, achieve more, and try, try, and try a little more... Because at the end of the day, it's true fellow reader when they say: no one can take away your achievements unless you let them... You're a star, believe in yourself and what you are capable of, search within and you will find what you can do and how far you can reach, because you simply can


Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Judgmental Mariam in Me

When I first started posting in my blog, I decided to make it a weekly one where I post every Thursday. I usually write them before that, whenever I'm 'inspired'. Not this week. This week was cluttered with 'inspirations', which made it harder for me to pick one illustration and plot its details down. So here goes what my mind and heart chose to be voiced out. 

A week from now, I was wandering at one of the malls with my siblings, when people started looking at me, staring at me,eyeing me from head to toe...They tried to hide it but their eyes kept following me. I was confused. Was it that I was wearing minimal make up? I can't look this bad without make up! Is it the way I walk? But I Know I walk just fine, with the right body posture... I started pondering about every single detail in my physical appearance.  Thoughts started rushing in and out for a couple of minutes until it hit me, they can't see my arms! See, I was wearing a 'Bahraini Abaya' that day. For those who don't know, a 'Bahraini Abaya' is the traditional dress for women in the Gulf with a specific cut where you have to tuck your arms in to tie an inner belt. So for the 3-4 minuted I had my arms inside my Abaya, I faced the most confusing - troubling - puzzled faces I have ever seen in my entire life! I mean, I know we all can be judgmental every now and then, maybe more often than  we would like to admit, but this was the first time I felt judged for something, if true, had nothing to do with. 

I started thinking, do I stare like this every time someone who looks slightly different passes by? Do they notice the "I'm trying not to stare at you" looks? For these couple of minutes I loathed the judgmental Mariam in me. Although I always try not to judge or label others, I couldn't help but think of all the times I actually do. I couldn't deny all the times I glanced at someone for milliseconds just because they looked different. They see it. They feel it. All the "I'm trying not to stare at you" looks don't count anymore. 

It took me a while to sit and write down this experience because until this minute, I'm  still trying to get my head around it. Am I judgmental? Am I not the philanthropic person I think I am? No that's not true! Because when I try 'not to stare' at someone and I eventually do I don't do it because I want them to feel bad. I always do it with a smile. A supportive smile I hope.  

There's a lot to think and write about when it comes to our perceptions of other people, but for now I know that I should always, always, keep this 3 minute experience in my head before I step out for you never know what you might face one day.

I write and publish this note in hope that I'll one day get to the point where my actions truly mirror what goes around in my mind and heart...


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

To the Ones Who Still See the Best in Me...

A year and couple of months ago, this quote was all over my facebook page. Back then, I thought that I really understood what it meant and what it was all about. I posted it with certain people in my mind showing them that YES! I'm over you and yes, I'm done running after you asking you to re-live our memories. I admit I'm known for being an attention freak and maybe I tend to always be the centre of attention BUT I know that I've never asked for something I didn't provide the other person with.  Don't get me wrong, I understand the whole concept of giving without expecting anything from others. But they were not the "others". They were 'the people' in my life. 

Couple of days ago, I re-posted this quote. No, not because I'm such a big fan of this post but rather because I think I finally got to the point where I don't want to run after them. It is clear to me now that we are not on the same page, not even in the same book.  I'm not going to deny how frustrated this leaves me but I know, I know very well, that it's not worth the effort anymore. Our relationship is not worth me getting devastated over false expectations and faded memories. 

I know this note might not get to the people I'm letting go off because it wouldn't really catch their attention if I write a post or win the Pulitzer award! But for those people who are still by my side despite the distances, differences and the headaches I give them everyday: thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You are the reason why I choose to be better person, a person who lives  her passions and seeks the best in herself.

Although I still love and cherish every single memory I lived with them and until this day I get so thrilled if I ever see their number brightening my phone screen, I hope and I pray that I don't have to go through this again. Nevertheless, I'll always see the good in people because there are people who see the good in me, granting me the opportunity of being a better person everyday. 


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Shushing the Evil Voices in My Head

I want to slap her so bad...I want to pull her hair and drag her down 24 floors... and I want to stab him right in the face, between his eyes. I want to take his lighter and... OK. I think now is the right time I stop sharing some of the many thoughts that shuffle through my wide imagination while having to deal with some of the 'annoying' people I meet every now and then.

There's not one single day that passes without me repeating these words over and over again. Trying so hard to picture these horrifying images to help me relax and survive these dreadful moments. But lately I was wondering, what if I simply stop deciphering their actions and words and just listen? Not react, but rather  l-i-s-t-e-n. And so I started adopting this 'technique' lately... But no, nothing has changed. I was still finding the same people 'annoying'. I wasn't going to quit. I decided to take it to another level. 

I started thinking about all the  people  that find me annoying (very few of course) and it occurred to me, what appeals as annoying to me might not be annoying to others. I decided to give 'accepting others' as they are a chance believing that nothing is impossible. I set my mind to it. I woke up in the morning thinking that today, no matter what, I'm not going to interpret anyone's words or actions. I will receive them as they are, even if they irritate and annoy the hell out of me!  This was a couple of weeks ago. I started accepting the just be method i.e. if I want to be, then I should accept others to just be no matter how they act or what they say. 

I'm not saying that this has been an easy process...not at all actually! I'm still living the process...accepting its circumstances with all its ups and downs to help me get to what I want...I want to be happy...I want to be joyful...I want to be energetic... I want to achieve my goals and live my passions... I want to just be.


Thursday, September 13, 2012

A Better Mariam Living a Better Today

This is not the first time I start plotting down a triggered thought, a lingering feeling or anything of that sort, but I've always managed to come up with an excuse to pause whatever is in my head. So, beloved reader, this is the first actual full 'voice out' I've written since my graduation  from university (15 months ago)! Well, you know what they say, it is never too late.

I'm sure most of you if not all of you are aware of my struggle with weight loss. Here's a quick summary in case I haven't told you before: lost 25 kgs in 1.5 years (yey) ==> then had a surgery which left me lying on beds and sofas for 6+ months (not so yey) ==> result: full recovery but gained all kilos back. You can only imagine how this experience left me. I was devastated. I was continuously brought down by what people say or dare not say. I couldn't get my head around the idea of having to go through the whole process again. That I have to work out day and night again. Change my lifestyle and eating habits again. And so I tried, I joined the gym and went there on a regular basis, but I was going with the most negative energy one can carry. It wasn't until last week that I realised that maybe doing it for the second round is not as bad as it sounds. Maybe, just maybe,  like I inspired people in my first journey, I am destined to inspire more this time. This way I'll be doing what I need to be doing while fulfilling one of my passions, helping others along the way. 

So what's different this time?  I am fully aware now that I should be working on the interior as much the exterior and that  re-living the past is not so bad as long as I'm doing it with a clearer vision. Although arriving to this realization took me what looks like forever but I'm happy, really happy, that I'm where I am finally and that's because of life coaching sessions -which I started recently-, gym training sessions and most importantly the support of family, friends and neighbors. 

Today, I can voice out and say:  I'm on the right path. I'm working towards my passions and towards a better Mariam in a better world living a better today.