Two Roads Diverged In a Wood, And I

I took the one less travelled by,

And that has made all the difference.

Robert Frost

Hello, world.

I am in Savannah, Georgia. Starting my postgrad- Masters in Writing at SCAD (short for Savannah College of Art & Design).

I feel like I’m on a really fast roller coaster (even though I terribly fear them), and things seem to be flying like a rocket for me ever since I left Pakistan.

I honestly have no words, because this is a big change in my life. When most girls my age are forced to marry and start a family, I have been given the choice of living abroad, in the good old US of A, and take my future in my hands.

I had given up, truly. When I got the acceptance at SCAD and expressed my excitement to go there, my parents and family did not agree. In their eyes, I was 26 and unmarried, getting old and nearing my expiration date. However, one day in November, my parents just came up to me and told me that they will support my decision to go to SCAD despite what everyone says or thinks.

And so, I applied for and got my student visa, and here I am. I’ll march my band out.
I will beat my drum,
And if I’m fanned out,
Your turn at bat, sir,

I can sing this whole damn song, and I have realized that I am a theater nerd as well.

To new beginnings!

xoxo

March ’16

March is such a busy month for me, it just seems to fly away. My sister is here from UK for easter holidays and so is my aunt with her family. Her poor kids are sick.  Also, my younger brother has contracted chicken pox and it will be not long since his twin also catches it. 😕

On another note, I have finally motivated myself enough to start working out again. I want to be the way I was 2 years ago. Sigh. I used to be very thin. I don’t know how I let myself gain all this excess weight. Ugh. The other day, I met a classmate with whom I went to college with. She couldn’t recognize me. And I guess that was my wakeup call. 😧

Anyway. My other bff Mariam is getting married some time in July and I really want to wear a sarree. It will officially be my first time! I do have the height to pull it off but not the body since I’m kind of overweight now. Ugh.

I hope I lose all this fat soon.

Nose piercing? 

In Pakistan, usually girls about to get married get their noses pierced. In my family, unmarried girls are not allowed to, as all the grandmas say it’s a sign of the girl being engaged. That’s what I was told all the time I was growing up.

However, all my younger girl cousins had their piercings done last year. I wanted to, as well, but mom reckons I’ll look really above my age as I’m not skinny and thin anymore. True, I’ve gained a couple of (okay, a lot of) pounds in the last two years, and I’m not skinny as I used to be. 😐

My mom has a point, too, I guess. Because I’m 26 in August soon. And she’s frantically trying to find me a husband. And because of my fatness, I’m having trouble keeping the attention of potential proposals. 😏

Ugh. Tbh, I really just wanna get it over with. 😐😐😐 I’m a huge scaredy cat when it comes to something involving needles and skin and pain. 😟 and sometimes, I just change my mind. What if I look stupid with a nose ring, what if it makes my nose look fatter? All these questions keep me overthinking up at night… 😕😕😕😕

August 31st 2015, Monday

“Have courage and be kind.” 

I’m sorry this post is late. I didn’t really feel like writing, and I was busy with family, too.

Here is my birthday post.

I wasn’t really expecting much on my birthday, to be honest. I slept at 11 pm because I just felt weird and sad. 😕 But I got woken up at midnight and there was cake. My siblings and mom surprised me. 🎉 For a while, I thought it was a dream because I was sleeping and sad and wanted to crawl under a rock and hide. But yeah. I wasn’t expecting it and it sure was a lovely surprise. ☺️


My friends had no plans with me. They didn’t even meet me. I thought they’d be planning something, but they didn’t. 😐 Mom later took me to lunch, and all my girl cousins and aunts and both grandmothers were there. Later, my guy cousins also arrived. I had an amazing time and for a while, I forgot my depression and sadness. 😌

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I ordered a club sandwich, but it tasted horrible so I passed it on to mom. I survived on these super delicious French fries and 2 mocktails. 😋🍴🍟🍹

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“Pyari Beti = Lovely Daughter”

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After lunch, my brother got cake with candles and OMG, the restaurant started playing this Happy Birthday song and I was quite embarrassed. 😳 I had Maryam and Mina, my younger cousins, cut the cake for me. But I blew the candles though. That’s actually my favorite part. Blowing the candles. 🎂☺️💖

Overall. My birthday was not as sad as I was thinking it would be. Sure, I was hurt by my friends. And that one person who never called. Or texted, even though I kept waiting. And yes, the thought of growing old does make me sad. But that day, my family made sure that I was happy. And that’s all that matters. Even if it only lasted for a short time. ❤️

Marriages in Pakistan: what it really feels like

Marriages, in Pakistan, are made in drawing rooms. Also known as hellholes. And auction houses. 

The whole experience leaves a girl feeling as if she is no more than a commodity, that she is being auctioned off to the highest bidder. Some men will have better degrees, some will have looks and some will have more money, and for the girl’s auctioneers, who are also her family, that is a huge deal to ponder over. 

What and how the girl feels doesn’t matter. She is required to dress up specifically to attract people, just like shopkeepers make things pretty to get more buyers. 

The whole process of getting ready, as if she is being displayed and sold off, is pretty demeaning. But do people care? Not the pathetic guests who come over to eat food like hungry apes and scrutinise her to the flesh and bone, and certainly not the family who gave birth to her. 

This is part of life,” the mothers would say, “We went through this exact same thing and so did our mothers before us, and we never complained.”

Once she hits puberty, your daughter is no longer a human being. And the priority is showcasing her to the world like she is a porcelain doll, something that can be bought and sold. If she bags a good proposal, wow, if she bags two, good job to her beauty and no brains. It’s always the more, the better. 

“My Shumaila got 3 proposals from very rich and handsome doctor boys. They wanted a thin tall fair young innocent pretty girl and are heads over heels for my beautiful Shumaila. The boys are just so divine. One lives in Amrika, one in London, and the other in Australia! Oh, however will we choose from 3 saint boys?” Gabba gabba, yak yak. 

This is common practice in our society. And as sad as it sounds, it is deemed quite normal, too.

Beauty and no brains. Plastic and fake beauty too, what with all the bleaching the skin and caking her face with every makeup product known to man. 

And if, God forbid, IF a girl complains, she is accused of being many things. Promiscuous, foolish, and corrupt are just to name a few. 

This. This is one of the many reasons why Pakistan can never grow and will always remain backward in every aspect of life. 

Girls are not commodities. They are not things. You do not own them and have a million “guests” over just to auction off your daughter. Guests, who viciously scrutinise her and discard her once they find “faults” in their perception of beauty. 

When will you ever learn? 

How is a girl ever supposed to be okay with this? 

What a terrible week

Wow. First, I get sick with fever and a very bad case of sore throat. And today, I almost bleed to death. :/

My fever is fine now. Dad took me to the doctor a few days ago, and I am taking antibiotics and other medication, and I’m feeling quite well. I still have the cough though, but its getting better.

I’m a huge klutz, as you all know. Clumsy, clumsy me, and someday it will be the death of me. Seriously. -_-

Okay, so today I went shopping with Mom. And I was in a hurry to open my shopping bags as soon as we got home. Mom told me to do it after Iftar, but like always, I didn’t listen.

The shopping bags were sealed really tightly. So, I grabbed my box cutter, and started cutting the seals off. One bag down, 4 more to go. On the third bag, my hand slipped, and I hit my pinky with full force. A jab of pain, and a yell later, I realized I was bleeding. 😮

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My parents were mad at me for being so careless. My sister brought the First Aid kit and Dad told me to hold the wound really tight to stop the bleeding. 😦

Mom later bandaged my finger. It hurt like a bitch when she cleaned the wound with an alcoholic swab even though the wound is not that big in size. 😥 Mom says I can’t get my hand wet for a day or two until the wound heals. That will be so difficult. :/

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So, all in all. This week didn’t go at all as I planned. But then again, life is life. An excellent mystery, and we’re all pawns.


————-This is a scheduled post on 15th July 2015. Internet issues and too tired to wait up. I don’t know when this will be published. Too confusing. Going to bed now. Night! 🙂 ————-