perhaps

Perhaps this loneliness is an embodiment of something bigger than just my objectification of unavailable partners that dictated the nature of my “romantic” relationships with them all these years. 

Perhaps the allure for such partners is because of that deeply unresolved wound incurred by an early incident of childhood rejection. 

Perhaps this rejection arose from the feeling of being a burdened afterthought by caregivers because they were ignorant of their own unhealed pains. 

Perhaps that lack of nurture led me to feel rejected and betrayed by childhood friends with whom I posed some kind of threat because of my overall design. 

Perhaps my soul’s design is meant to dwell in this loneliness because I am supposed to embrace it once and for all, injest it like the hardest pill to swallow in the flighty hopes that I can finally give more of a fuck to myself than I did for others for way too fucking long.

Perhaps giving so much of myself has blessed me with so many obstacles that gave my head a nauseous spin, never-ending states of discomfort and unyielding knots that perpetuate up and down my spine stopping at intricate points in my body, leaving behind a tickle or an itch you can never satisfy no matter how far you reach for it or how hard you scratch. Then the frantic breathing stops and the rush of thoughts commence its thundering pursuit of my sanity; bellowing steam and confetti and it all gets rather mad up in here.

Perhaps I am mad enough now to greet my loneliness and give it a name, a shape, a button-down shirt, a dress with animal prints, or a fidget spinner, to finally comprehend in this sweet sweet mind of mine that I can feel loneliness fearlessly, gracefully. 

Perhaps as I become unapologetically lonely I can, without any fucks given, end ruminating over loops of feel good fallacies as I unravel more and more of the world’s ugliness as well as my own.

Perhaps that is just how its meant to be and honestly I can give fuck all to what anybody thinks about what I got to say at this point.

Anyway,

Perhaps surrender to my loneliness is a better shield,  a solitary kind of romance where I can be lonely with myself and somehow in the muck of it all, we (me, myself and I) will find a different kind of light that can brighten up the way so that this loneliness can finally just become aloneness.

Perhaps that will feel better. 

Perhaps…perhaps….perhaps.

a Love letter

Dearest Nora,

I was stingy with you because I did not know any better and I have only recently started to learn how to love you so get ready to receive because I’m about to tell you now how much I love you and why I love you in no particular order but to finally put some order and rest in your heart and mind.

So, I love you.

I love your perseverance through adverse and challenging times especially when they have been many and regular.
I love your fierce loyalty towards certain family members and friends, only the ones that listened with love and patience and stood beside you.
I love your wild imagination and attention to details that most people miss.
I love your capacity to forgive yet the assertiveness to not forget.
I love that you when you stumble, which you often do, you do it with grace.
I love your offbeat humor accompanied by hearty laughs and eyes that show it.
I love your kaleidoscope of interests in and out of life and how you bite your lips when you reverse engineer existence in fleeting thoughts.
I love your unwavering interest in the darkest and brightest corners of the psyche with faith in the unseen.
I love how you stand up for yourself unapologetically, you grasp your uniqueness and you are not ashamed to voice it.
I love how you appreciate beauty in the ancient and the aged by time.
I love your humility and adaptability.
I love your honesty and your determination to always uphold the truth no matter how much it stings.
I love how you embrace sensuality felt through the palms of your hands and your fingertips.
I love how you can love intimately and passionately with such devotion and you understand what it means to give your body, heart and soul to someone yet maintaining respectful boundaries remembering that you have always been whole.
I love that you are aware of the lucky ones who are open enough to receive even an ounce of your kindness and compassion and those lucky ones are not many and you are ok with that too. You are also uniquely connected to your dreams and the rhythm of the universe inside your body and outside of it. Not many are even aware of that sort of potential. You are special. You have always been special.

There is a collection of wonderful things about you to love, that I can love, and that many others can love; family, friends, lovers, partners, children, animals.

You deserve to be loved as sincerely and genuinely as you love.

There is no one I would be rather in this life time other than you.

All the light,
Nora

an apology letter

Dearest little Nora,


This is a letter of apology. Another one long overdue. This is your 39year old and a half self. It was a difficult journey to arrive to where I am. Daunting and exhausting. I may have arrived relatively “safely” but the bruises and scars remain and it is ok. I carry them with respect and honor.


I have not forgotten your original pain. In fact, it was your pain that you carried from such a young age that led me, slowly but surely, to this transition point in the cycle of our current life. That very same pain grew into confusion, misguidance and rebellious voicelessness that I have ignored for decades. I knew it was there but I got distracted and experienced the harsher side of life. The kind of ugly that life spewed at an unapologetically sensitive women like myself and that sent me to many rock bottoms along the way. I knew you were different, a wild day dreamer, intermittently energetic, moody as fuck, curious and stranger than most. And because of that, and for the biggest portion of our lives, family suppressed you, friends suppressed you, partners suppressed you, life suppressed you, and worst of all…I suppressed you. Not anymore.


As we both now know, time is a cruel teacher; calculating and patient. Time was not particularly on our side by makings things fast and forgetful instead we lingered and endured and felt every sting through every cell of our being time and time again until by some cosmic mercy it finally granted us the tick of a gentler hand and perhaps now we appreciate time a little and no longer resent it and no longer allow that very same pain to fester.


And time finally stood still in that instant when I saw you completely, I heard you and I stood up for you and held you gently in my heart and mind where you can finally be wild and free and just be you. That instant that is rightfully ours. No longer in anyone’s shadow and instead in your own and unafraid. The embodiment of love and freedom in solitude.


I am sorry it took this long but as they say;

better late than never.

Yours in light,

Nora

will you?

will you…
enter into my world softly and ignite a curious flame?

will you…
trace the cracks on my shell and fill them with shimmering gold?

will you…
play with the child, reassure the teen and elevate the woman?

will you…
breathe in me your fire, quiet my winds and still my waters?

will you…
listen to my silence, read my tears and write gentle caresses on my skin?

will you…
offer your body freely, share your mind boldly and fuse your soul wholly?

will you…
flow with me, glow with me, grow with me?

will you…
swim against the current with me?

will you?

No. I didn’t think so.

pros and cons of two cities

For 11 months now, I have been commuting between two major cities in Egypt; Cairo and Alexandria on a fairly regular weekly basis. The distance between them is about 220km. It does not sound like a lot and in fact the Cairo/Alex desert road has been recently renovated to meet “international standards”, and yet many street lamps are not even lit ensuring to keep hazardous standards above average. Such is the joy of driving in Egypt.

Every weekend I go to Alexandria to help my mother out in her restaurant. Then I return to Cairo 4 days later to work in the office for the NGO work and thus that has been my life for 11 months. What prompted me to take this decision still astounds me to this second and such a decision did not wait to come without its share of consequences yet I am slowly discovering the reasons, the explanation, the purpose or whatever it is I’m supposed to discover through therapy and sobriety.

To try and step away from the seemingly perpetual company negativity and pessimism that have been good friends of mine for a couple of years now, I will list 10 good points and 10 bad points of this experience  which actually has a genuinely challenging one. In a nutshell, it has been taxing on me mentally and emotionally and needless to say physically. And this is the kind of “travel” that hopeful Facebook posts talk about that has helped me discovered the joys of life or the beauty of who I am and could be. Commuting in Egypt is no joy ride. Endless traffic is endured, potholes and bad roads are passed over, pedestrian zombies and roadkill are dodged and a harsh test of reality and patience is passed upon you by force.

Anyway, here is my list of pros and cons of living and commuting between two major cities on a weekly basis.

The cons:

  1. It is a lonely ride
  2. Very little social life
  3. Friendships are tested
  4. Disillusionment with what I’m doing in both jobs
  5. Inconsistency in outcome of both jobs due to its nature
  6. No savings
  7. No privacy, no real alone time
  8. Exhausting and no time to exercise
  9. Old parental resentments
  10. Lack of focus due to demotivation

The pros:

  1. A lot of reflections on the road
  2. Strengthened relationship with one parent
  3. Solidified old/new friendships
  4. Understanding what I do not want
  5. Knowing your limitations and addressing it
  6. Self-discovery
  7. Overhauling old room and donating things
  8. Ability to walk in Alexandria
  9. Forgiving the parents
  10. Learning to let go and move on

dry me a river

A river of expression has been flowing within me but that flow keeps coming to a splashing halt against this invisible dam. I have no idea what sort of dam it is or why it is there. But it is there. Majestic, thick, menacing and shall not let my thoughts, feelings or creative purge flow at all.

I am stuck in this state. Over the past couple of weeks I have been delaying, procrastinating, writing a post because I kept yo-yoing between what topic I wanted to write about. I had one topic lingering that I chose to title “forgiving the parent(s)” and others that kept bouncing off the peeled plaster of the walls in my head. They are still bouncing, mad, like angry birds.

Could it all have started with the parents? The agony of growing up? The blaming game when the going gets tough?

So this is a post of my inability to purge in hopes that it still succeeds in purging something.

My mind is restless. My body is screaming for a change. For a state of what it once was. Self-effacing, self-loathing. Sometimes I can feel pretty good actually that I have come a long way. Faced shitty people, shitty environment, shitty substances, shitty realisations. And sometimes I wonder what went right. What went wrong again. What went where why? Back and forth, forth and back. The mental cobwebs go as quickly as they come, like the spider themselves, always in a hurry, always still. The left side of my body is out of balance. From my left eye to my left foot. All the points and joints hurt. But still, I am, amazingly, astronishngly, surviving unscathed. Just yet, for now. Sipping on tea with milk. Extra milk. With that sourly sweet aftertaste at the back of my throat.

sting me a stung

Salsabeel Village,
North Coast,
Alexandria, Egypt,
The Mediterranean Sea

September 19, 2016

Dear Mr. Jellyfish,

This is just a quick update on my recovery from your generous stings 8days ago on what should have been the first day of a cheery relaxed vacation with friends after 9 months of hard work and barely any breaks.

Unfortunately, it has not been the most pleasant of recoveries especially when, well, because, you see, physically, you left my left arm nearly useless with a swollen wrist and immovable fingers for at least two days. Only shadows of your marks were visible then because my skin was too taut to even show the veins on the top of my hand. Freaky stuff. My wrist looked like a relatively heavy baseball bat just swung its way nonchalantly by a drunk in a soliloquy. I cried, figuratively and literally, for the strongest painkiller just to curb the indescribable pain I had to bear for the first 6 hours from our sticky situation, but there were no pills. Maybe that is what being flayed feels like, or more like being flayed while a sinister bad-breathed Egyptian government employee sweetly runs the top of a flame from a knock-off Bic lighter just high enough under my skin so as not to turn it into a crisp.

I really did not mean to swim your way, Mr. Jellyfish. I had not been a few minutes in the water and was just about to swallow the horizon and lose myself into it to find the peace I been, and still, looking for, while ignoring the waves of negativity, but alas, it was short lived and fate brought us to our watery embrace. My good intentions, if I could so boldly claim so, did not prepare me for what was coming next, and one tentacle at a time, you have changed my life forever.

People have seen my arm aghast assuming I got burnt, by acid perhaps, or some horryifing man-made chemical mix which could be just as obscene. So I find it amazing that all you needed to do was probably poop your poison on me and not even wipe.

Anyway, there was enough human drama happening in the background that I envy your obvious oblivion to the details. I wished you were there though, tentacles crossed on the sofa, greased up with after sun, smoking a cigarette perhaps, and stinging the hell out of our irreversible human drama without reproach. So cool that you could swim away with shit like that. Respect.

Pain is such a lonely experience. To be human, in this day and age with its bullshit drugs and technological addiction, is even lonelier.

I wish you a happy long life, Mr. Jellyfish, and I hope we never meet again.

Cheers, Nora

God, I miss You.

Do you miss me? Did you hear me scream the other day? Did you notice the tears streaming down my face as my vision, like my life, begins to gutter out? I know my issues are petty that is why I screamed your name in vain, I cried your name in pain, hoping you would relieve me, rekindle me and fight my demons with me. But I doubt you heard me. Why would you? You see, I am surrounded by doubt. There are so many people, “your people”, hating on you right now. You have become the epitome of doubt until it has become so contagious we have forgotten how to treat it. You have become the being to look away from because people have mastered the blind eye and the wicked heart to solely focus on parasitic greed and transient earthly pleasures . Generations upon generations have so much to say against you, and so many to kill for you. Can you see the hatred in the world; the corruption, the rape, the hypocrisies, the blood, so much blood; the perfect habitat for anger and fear and death where we are currently thriving? Through you, we have administered the perfect Molotov cocktail for the soul.

I believed in you once, not the way you wanted me to though, but in my individual way. I may still believe in you but having led myself astray I almost stopped believing in myself. I went down paths that have damaged my very core, blew my soul into ash. I learnt your ways once, I learnt to pray to you myself, I read your words and I walked in life feeling your presence above me somehow, protecting me, shielding me, faintly lighting my way. In the many things I did, good and bad, I felt you at the back of my mind, watching me, judging me and I wonder now if you are laughing or penciling down my sins one by one like the blinking cursor on my screen.

I wonder, I wonder how am I supposed to find you again. I really thought I had you once but there is just so much ugliness in us, so much vanity, lies and disappointment. I believed in you, the memories, the thoughts, the training I had on how to perceive you in my waking, worshiping life. I tried to believe in other things, other philosophies, to detach, to love myself but somehow I always found myself pulling back to you and hating myself even more. I find myself staying attached to you when what I prayed for the most is to be detached, from everything, everyone; for your mercy to flicker me out like a candle gently and allow me to be the smoke that fades out into nothingness once and for all. Forgotten, unknown. I lost you when I was coming down, was too distracted to find you when I was high and I still miss You.

 

that one-liner

So I am posting on a Tuesday instead of a Monday but that is because I finally made it to the beach with friends yesterday and the sun, wind, sea and sand were just right.

I have this book that is called The One-Line-A-Day, A Five Year Memory Book. On August 30th, 2015 I wrote: “I have made a decision. I will quit soon and start work with my mother. Leave this wretched city behind”.

A year later, I am working with my mother, I haven’t entirely quit and I haven’t left this wretched city behind either. I am amazed at myself and at others at how fickle our decisions can be. We make a decision with all the confidence in the world, looking hopefully into a non-existent future with glittering stars thinking that we will surely conquer that decision, squeeze it till we drip the last drop of success out of it.

Bullfuckingshit.

No such thing. Every decision I made, so far, didn’t stick out. Every decision I watched someone I know make, did not stick out. We babble and dream and convince ourselves it would work, but it does not. Why? Discipline. Mostly. We lack discipline, not money, energy or time. Discipline. That one most-pivotal-moment-sort-of-lesson I learnt the hard way working with my mother. Not the most joyful of partnership but one where many hard hard lessons have been laid carefully before me so I can I get to pick and choose which attitude to work with, if I even could.

When I look at the lines upon lines that I have written over the few recent years I feel like I am reading the lines of several different people, each in their unique situation, embodied in one being; dumbfounded, depressed, eager yet willing. Taking a peek into the past on a daily basis is actually a terrifying exercise. So much self-judgment, nostalgia and resentment can arise out of that exercise. Another discipline lost, the discipline to look at the bright side.

 

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