Tuesday 11 August 2020

Life Lately


Maryam 5 months ago: By May, I would have been in…. I would have done…I would…

COVID-19: Hold my drink!

The events that occurred…and are still occurring in 2020 falls short of expectation. I mean, who would have imagined that I would experience all these? This year has been one of the most challenging ever. What keeps me going is the ability to focus on positive experiences.

An excerpt from the breathtaking novel I recently completed, Love from A to Z, is a novel that I keep reflecting upon.

S.K Ali writes:

Everyone told Dad that he was “lucky” that I was so “good.” How he’d done a “good” job, given the circumstances. Of Mom passing away. And being in another country. And converting to a new religion as a family.

What they’d meant was that I was easy to handle, didn’t talk back or push limits. But maybe it wasn’t that I was just good or that Dad had done a good job. Maybe it had been this journal. This way of noticing that even during the suckiest moments in life there was something marvelous to be seen, heard, touched. Or just a tiny awe felt in the heart. Maybe it was going out of my way to try to notice something, this noticing, that had saved me all along.


I got diagnosed with Malaria about a week ago and the symptoms were far from what I’ve experienced since I came into this world. What with the medications and putrid smell of iodoform and the sight of nurses dressed in white, appearing occasionally with plates of syringes?

While I was still ill, I could hardly perform any task. I rested till I got tired of resting. I watched movies until I got bored. Life seemed to take a different path as I started reflecting over scenarios that had happened in the past…both the pleasant, unpleasant, and cringe-worthy scenarios.

I started to appreciate the little blessings that we take for granted. Like sleeping and having an appetite for meal. Like being able to swallow food and go about with the daily tasks. It got to a stage that I couldn’t close my eyes to sleep. Whenever I attempt to close my eyes, several figures and shapes would appear in front of me, making me feel jittery and unable to sleep.

After recovering from the illness, I started to appreciate the blessings that I often take for granted.

 RELATED ARTICLE: Blog Break & Life Lately.

Reading Nice Books

Yay! I recently concluded S.K Ali’s Love from A to Z and wrote a review afterwards. I’ll post on my blog soon. The novel was lovelier than I expected. I cried, smiled…and experienced a series of emotions while reading. Hands down, it’s the best novel I’ve read this year. Surprisingly, this turns out to be the first Muslim fiction novel that I’ll read.

Other books that have been inspiring include Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner and Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani’s Buried Beneath the Baobab Tree.


Writing Novels

For over two years now, I’ve been planning to write a couple of novels. Yes, planning because that’s the ‘safe’ word to use instead of ‘procrastinating.’ Well, this lockdown has granted me the opportunity to start these novels, write a couple of short stories, and send some for publication.

 READ ALSO: 2019: My Top 7 Posts.

Posting on the blog

I spent over a month writing blog posts and designing pictures for the blog. Now, all I have to do is sit back and schedule these posts.


Taking things one step at a time

I wouldn’t be honest if I say that this period has been a memorable one. There were times I almost gave up or spent minutes thinking about my life and the decisions I’ve made. What consoles me is the fact that life doesn’t always have to go perfectly and we don’t always have to make the right decisions. We will fail sometimes and learn from our mistakes. We will cry and learn to smile again. What matters is taking life one step at a time.


“It’s through mistakes that you can actually grow.’ – Paula Scher






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