It is a gloomy Sunday and I am thrilled about spending my entire day indoors. I made myself some hot chocolate and I’m a little disappointed because per my little sisters taste, it is pumpkin spice flavored- rolls eyes.
So, I felt the urge to sit down and write something. If you know me then I know what you’re thinking, Noor writing? But for some reason lately I’ve wanted to express myself in a different way. And my apologies for the quality and style, I usually like to scribble on paper not flush my thoughts in words.
So as you can tell by the title, I wanted to write about the culmination of this year, what I got out of it, and how I see myself starting the new lunar year. Now, I have never been the type of person to take part in New Year resolutions or care much for that transition because I always thought it was just arbitrary and I never understood people who wait to make big changes in their life at the New Year. Why not start a.s.a.p? But to each their own.
2017… this year was a beautiful disaster filled with every emotion you can think of.
Every year I “think” I have myself figured out.
“I am this type of person. I enjoy these type of things. I am passionate about matters on this subject. I would never do this or that” etc.
I mean I could go on.
And every so often I am surprised by how little I know about myself. Like what I think I know, or what I feel represents me, I am actually insecure about.
It is through experiences that I am able to unravel myself more and more each year. This year I had some high happy moments and low sad moments. I met some amazing people who have left a permanent mark in my life and others I drifted apart from. I also overcame some fears and started personal projects I was passionate about. It was nerve-racking and stressful, but the outcome was better than I expected Alhamdulillah .
I witnessed people close to me lose loved ones, battle inner demons, and give up on life. Conversely, I saw others fall into great fortune, success, and even love.
In the instance when this happens, meeting someone or drifting apart, the immediate sensation is a manic one. For me, I start to think –how should my reaction be, what am I doing that can shape this instance, and what is the purpose of this in the grand scheme of my life-
Coming from a spiritual perspective, I recognize I overthink everything to a fault. Why did God place me on this path? What role do the people present in my life play? Can I overcome the barriers placed in front of me?
This year, there seemed to be a theme. I was tested time and time again with something: PATIENCE. It is probably one of the hardest things to do because it’s letting go of any control you have and trusting that God will take care of it for you. And if you are a Type A personality like me, then you must know how incredibly difficult it is grasp this concept and actually practice it.
Many have told me that patience is a quality they admire about me, and I am very proud and thankful for this quality but by no means is it easy. It is extremely cumbersome and often times lonely. Alhamdulillah, this year I spent a lot of time reading and listening to many lectures and discussions about patience, its reward, and how strong a patient person is in the eyes of God. It is a true symbol of Iman (Faith) and it has helped me push through it. It is having full faith that God is leading you towards the future–the future he has so perfectly curated for you– not the one we think is best for us. Surely his plan is better than any of ours.
I hear stories of many people who went through some really wild life experiences. Their lives took completely different turns from the futures they dreamed of. What a horrible feeling this must be. In “defeat mode” most people would collapse and lose all hope. But when they persevered and had patience for Gods plan they found that they ended up in a place they never could have planned better for themselves, and were happier than they would have been in the fallen dreams they had.
Anyway, this was 2017 for me. God gifted me so much more than what he tested me with. But the very little he tested me with is what had the greatest impact on my well-being and it has shaped me and helped me grow. I made a choice that with any trial or tribulation I faced, I would try my best to only react in a way that was proactive to the well-being of future Noor. I will never know myself as a complete person because I haven’t experienced everything there is in life. And to be honest I may never will because only Allah knows what things I will endure in this life and how long I will live it. It is about the long journey of finding yourself…it is long and it is brutal and that is ok. If you’re not ok with it then your warped perception of reality is an unhealthy one.
Now, 2018… I don’t have any resolutions but I hope to practice some of the power thoughts below:
- An unanswered prayer from God is a gift.
- Always be kind and never let any experience harden the heart
- Don’t hurt those who have hurt you. Just walk away
- As I am getting older and exploring life my parents are getting old too. Cherish them.
- Be patient, but don’t stay stuck on an idea that your instinct is telling you to move on from
- Keep the spotlight on those who support you not on those who don’t
- Find happiness in something great even if it scares the shit out of you
- Be more open if it helps others
- Don’t have regrets but learn from them
- Leave 2017 in 2017
- Cry when you feel the urge to
- If you have the opportunity to help someone, do it. God put this in front of you for a reason.
- Be curious, open minded, and empathetic
- People will undermine you for being a woman or a Muslim or anything that they pigeonhole you as. Prove to them that you are capable of everything and anything you put your mind to.
- And lastly, smile 🙂