Saturday, April 4, 2009

Secure Sanctuary

I was reading Al-Qasas this morning.
That makes me sound really good.
I have moments when I am good. Putting the Quran in front of where I pray helps me remember how important it is that I continue to look for the wisdom inside.
I have moments when I am bad.
I know the difference.
I now tell you less about the bad. Why? Because that is something I am protecting more in my quest to be better. Telling all isn't really my job. Being honest isn't the same as divulging everything.
I've been republishing some of my older posts, which I did under the pseudonym of Honorary Arab. When I read them again, I'm amazed how long the posts are. I said so much every time, as if I had to pour it out of me.
I don't feel the same any more. I have a part of me which is known to only my closest friends. And The One I really share with is Allah.
I'll tell you what: I have some serious questioning moments right now but I know that The One to ask is Allah. Allah knows what is already written for my life and I need not worry. Really. Worry accomplishes what? Nothing.
What I have decided is that I need what Allah gave to Musa/Moses. I need "secure sanctuary". I spent sometime looking through images on google trying to find just what that image looks like. I decided on the picture of the gazebo accompanying this post.
My secure sanctuary is all about peace. I need some. I went away from the life I had eight years ago. EIGHT YEARS AGO! And I went because I didn't feel that peace. It wasn't about my house. I had a beautiful Tudor near Lake Nokomis. I loved my house. I just didn't love my life.
Now, I don't have the house, and in one month I might not even have the apartment. I just paid the last rent which I can pay. Deep breath. Ya. I could freak out. And I have my moments of anxiety. I won't try to fool you.
What I come back to is Allah.
Tonight, my mother is going to have a dinner party for my ex, his long-time fiance and my children. It's going to be an Easter dinner for the Christians. I am not invited. Same as yesterday, when I simply wanted to drop off some rummage sale clothes I bought for my girl. I was not allowed by her father to come to his house.
Alhumdulillah. There are some places I no longer want to be.
Where I want to be is in my secure sanctuary.


Anonymous said...

dude, why isn't a masjid like helping you out?

have u gone to one?

i'm floored msh'allah that yur so courageous! thats awesome. i think yur doing great to know what your real goal is : Allah and complaining only to Him.

but as your concerned reader, i am well..concerned!

I'm sorry that your mom is inviting all those peepz over and yur not a guest. although im sure u dont want to be all over an easter dinner anyway :-/

but i feel for you. but the most important thing is your amazing attitude.

remember, this life is a test, a passing moment in the sea of eternity.

Lisa said...

SubhanAllah! I always want to ask you about the other children, but just don't want to hurt you Yosra. I figured you'd write when you were able to about them. My heart bleeds for you. And for you're mother to be compassionate, you're children to have the opportunity to learn Islam, and you're ex to have some dignity for the mother of his children.

It sounds like it is virtually impossible for you to see them. Oh Yosra, mashallah you are so, so strong. Inshallah Yosra, it is just good that they know you're side of the family. As bad as the whole Easter thing is, someday they will khave choices dear friend and know you, and Islam. I'm just glad that they haven't been kept from you're mom.

Inshallah my prayers are with you to pay the rent and find something better. I love you for the sake of Allah, brave girl.

Safiyyah said...

Salaams Yosra:

Why would your mom have a dinner party for your ex? As I am fairly new to your blog, I don't know all the history.

Faith Confusion said...

It's good that your mum is still close to your ex and the children... but weird that they would not invite you. Or do they think you would not come if they invited you, since it is an Easter event? Would you go?

And you are so right; there are so many things that are best kept to ourselves, I think. Sometimes we are in a place where we need to purge to others, but then we may learn that it is best not to always do that. I know I used to tell way more to people than I needed to. And I felt it was my obligation. In a way I felt I was lying if I didn't say things. Now I know that's not the case, and I know that we lose power when we give away too much. It is as if we lose our privacy and we are weakened by people knowing our private business.

I'm glad you are in good spirits. You will see what God has planned for you soon, I'm sure. Exciting!!

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Anonymous Chick,

You are a kick!

Ya, I know I could start reeling in some help. I am reluctant. I am not going to resist it, but I will hold off for the time being.

I did try to talk to one of the Sheiks here, who sounded less than enthused to meet me, so I never called back. Sigh...

I'm not trying to pull on the manipulation chain with readers. I don't want to do cliffhangers or dangling dangers. I love all of you and find it cruel when other bloggers yank on their followers.

I appreciate your concern, but I just don't want you to be overly concerned. Life will shake down into some manageable form eventually, inshahallah.

As for the dinner...ya, I didn't want to be there. I just would have liked to have been asked if it was OK to have them over before she went ahead and informed me that the invite was given and they accepted. That's me. I don't like to have someone hating me connected to someone who loves me. Feels too weird.

It is a test, yes. I was not being studious enough in the past weeks. Sloughed off. Now? Well, yesterday, I felt good most of the time because I made it happen.

Life truly is 10% what happens to you and 90% your attitude.

Thanks for noticing mine.

Asalamu Alaykom Lisa,

The other children....ok, here it goes:

I have a son who is 14.5 and a girl who is 11.5. They were from my first marriage to an American who was a non-practising, recovering Catholic. We were together 13 years, married for 9.5. The kids were planned.

I had my son and began life as a SAHM. I really poured myself into him and thought that I could create an uber-baby. In some ways, he is living proof of my wish. He is this incredibly funny, clever dude. He is totally a young man now.

I had my daughter three years later. She got me for three years but it wasn't the same as before. I wasn't pouring myself any more, as I didn't have enough to give. I was with her for three years until I moved out and then she only got me half the time. She also did daycare, whereas her brother never did. She really loved AbuBoo and was hurt very badly when the marriage fell apart. She is struggling still to come to terms with everything that's gone on.

I did have them in co-custody for ages 3&6 to ages 8&11. I was not able to continue having that custody arrangement when I no longer had a house. I had to sell the house to pay off the debt in the divorce. I went to a one-bedroom which could not accomodate them. Also, I was truly recovering from a horrible sadness and I wasn't a good person to live with. They were often sad to be with me in that new place too.

Both of those kids know about Islam. They know some Quran. They know how to pray, how to make du'a, and how to fast. They have been to the masjid. I joke that no one needs to feel sorry for them as they know Islam better than most kids in Egypt.

They are not allowed to practice Islam in their father's house. He is not comfortable with it and considers that his house is a "Christian House" and that everyone within it must Christian...but he doesn't actually practice the kids end up with nothing.

I've been to Family Court over this. Been to mediation. I haven't just walked away. However, there comes a time when you say, "Enough," and find peace in what has been given and stop lamenting what is no longer possible.

The issue of pork has been a biggie...a piggie biggie. My kids do not want to eat it. My daughter was forced to either eat it or go hungry, so she ate it. I stepped in many times but eventually had to leave for the kids to fight on their own. My son, as he got older, decided not to partake. This angered their father to no end. He thinks I'm forcing their beliefs and wants me to tell them to eat it. I won't. He's upset still over it.

There have been other issues, such as mixed boy-girl parties, my girl having a boy classmate as a friend, clothes for my girl, holidays, X1 having a live-in for a while (now a fiance), privacy issues within a house, counseling, TV shows and movies, internet activity...I mean the list goes on! Some of those would have been the same no matter what. Others are exacerbated by the religious differences.

Time will tell. That's where I'm at. Time will tell.

They do love me. I do love them. We all love Mr. Boo.

Thanks for your concern. I hope I answered this thoroughly and truthfully enough.

Asalamu Alaykom Saffiyah,

My mom's belief is that it's best to keep good relations with the kids' dad. I agree. I just disagree with the amount of effort she put forth. I don't mind him being there at her house with the kids. I guess I don't like the fiance hanging out with my mom. That crosses a line, in my mind.

Asalamu Alaykom Faith Confu,

Naw, I wouldn't have gone. I didn't need the invite. I just wanted to be acknowledged as a person who could have hurt feelings BEFORE she did anything. My mom didn't feel any need to consult me and that's what hurt.

Loved this line you had, " I felt it was my obligation. In a way I felt I was lying if I didn't say things."

Yep. That's me in the past too!

And now? In the present? Ya, I feel excited in a very strange way. I am excited over what I don't know rather than about what I do know. All of us are clueless about the future, I'm simply admitting it.

Hey, funny that no one on my sidebar poll has selected, "Watching reality TV," as a focus for me. Oh, well...I still do! But I don't have cable or a big TV so my viewing is limted.

I did go to the library though! I'll write about my selections soon.


Lisa said...

Oh Yosra, so much to consider. I was so sad about the pork and possible male/female classmates. This must hurt so much. Oh sister you are always in my duas.

And it sounds like family court really doesn't understand how you feel. Yosra, I am so sorry. I'm glad though that they know Islam. Inshallah Yosra, they will turn towards it. I truly believe that. They will get tired of not being allowed to be anything. Love you so dearly!