Self worth

There’s a fine line between giving up and letting go. Giving up means selling yourself short, whilst letting go means freeing yourself of negativity. Unfortunately, people often get the two mixed up. They stay in a toxic relationships because they don’t want to ‘give up’ on that person and/or the relationship itself because they have put so much effort into trying to make it work.

This thought usually stems from their parents and their surroundings. They are taught not to ‘give up’ on their marriage, for various reasons. One of which, they think their child will never find love again, and sometimes, it’s about ‘What will people think?’ Which annoys me the most, but that can be a topic for another day. Also because their parents have gone through worse and have been able to pull through, and so they enforce their experiences onto their adult children. Now, that’s not always a bad thing. Of course you need to put effort into making a marriage work, but when it comes to a certain extent of abuse, cheat, betrayal, etc. then personally I believe it’s got to stop there.

Your parents relationship can definately be a learning experience for you, but in some cases, when the marriage is simply not working, where there is no respect, no compromise, no effort, etc. That’s when you need to stop, and think for yourself. You need to think about your future, and how long you can possibly put up with lies, emotional blackmail, physical abuse, and the like.

The other reason people put up with toxic relationships for so long, is because they don’t value themselves enough. They may not realise that they don’t know their self worth, but it is evident in the things they put up with, and the type of people they keep in their life. They think that they do not deserve something better, and equally, that they will not get anything better in future.

I’ve never been married, however, I’ve seen far too many people put up with toxic relationships because of the above reasons. I just had a friend console me about her husband and it really made me wonder why she would stick around. I’m no marriage expert, but you can tell when someone is not valuing the person in front of them. To tell you they love you is one thing, but to show it in their actions, that’s what you should be looking out for. Do their actions follow their words? Are they being condescending? Do they keep promising you empty promises? Are they abusive? Always angry? Don’t respect you? Then move on. I’m no angel, but without respect, there is nothing really left. I wish that people would wake up and realise that they are worth more than they think. They don’t have to put up with an abusive spouse for the rest of their lives. It’s not worth your emotional and physical well being.

I wish people would draw the line where it’s supposed to be drawn, that way, they wouldn’t be spending their lives in heartache and misery. Know your worth, don’t stick around because you think you will never get another chance at love. And remember that love and marriage isn’t everything. Yes, it can be beautiful, but it’s not the end goal. It is just a means for you to meet your Lord.

The same thing also applies to general relationships, to jobs, to careers, to absolutely everything in life. Don’t sell yourself short. Know your worth.

Rely on Allah

I read online about someone asking a brother about marriage. He said he wasn’t ready yet because of the wedding expenses, having to financially support someone else. He also said ‘these days it’s hard to keep up with bills etc if the wife is also not working. And the person writing this thought it was a mature response. Coming from an Islamic page, I didn’t think it was a very mature response at all. And the following is how I responded:

It’s only mature if you look at it from a worldly perspective. As Muslims we should strive for the hereafter as it is our true destination, rather than putting every effort into this world. You’ve got to find the balance, Allahu alem, maybe he does. But like a few of the sisters mentioned, you have to trust Allah.

“Get the unmarried ones among you married, as well as the righteous slave men and slave women. If they are poor, Allah will make them independent by his grace” (Surah Nur, verse: 32)

Allah is The Ever Providing, and if you do something for His sake, then surely He will not disappoint. Second, a wedding should not be extravagant like our tradition says, there is nothing wrong with tradition as long as it does not clash with your Deen.

“And those, who, when they spend, are neither extravagant nor niggardly, but hold a medium (way) between those (extremes)” [al-Furqaan 25:67].

Prophet Muhammad (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “The most blessed nikah is the one with the least expenses”.

Also, don’t get me wrong, I don’t see anything wrong with a female working, but if he wants both of them to work full time, then when are they going to see each other and spend time together? Obviously, it’s a different story if you have to, but these days people work extra just to spend extravagantly which as above is not what we should be striving for, and of course nothing wrong with a little extra for a rainy day. But then again, who promised us tomorrow? And which world are we working harder for?

Goodbyes.

I felt something I’ve never felt before. I felt like I belonged. I felt inspired, weak yet strong. I felt relieved, safe, and almost invincible. I felt all these things and more, words cannot even describe. But then it left, and it broke my heart into pieces. Also something I’ve never felt before. I’ve never been so attached. And I have to wait to experience the feelings again. Chances are, I may never see the day.

What I’m describing is not a break up with a person or a material thing. Rather, it is one of the greatest things that Allah has blessed us with in this world. It is the month of Ramadan.  I have practised Ramadan for so long, but this time, I truly embraced it. I welcomed it with open arms, and in return, it made me feel at peace- like never before.

It’s almost impossible to describe the impact it had on my spirituality. Ramadan gave me something extremely powerful and I can’t thank Allah enough for allowing me to experience the sweetness of this blessed month. It almost feels as though I’ve lost a loved one, that’s how sad I am about it coming to an end.

I really miss it, I miss praying taraweeh even though my feet were aching, I miss praying qiyam even though my eyes were slowly closing. I miss the feeling of being United almost every night at the mosque. I miss praying to my Lord the Most Merciful, seeking His forgiveness. Prayer feels so much better in Ramadan. It reminds you how weak your are, that you have to rely on The Ever Providing for everything.

I wish I had truly embraced it all those years. But I can’t dwell on it, rather I pray that I welcome every Ramadan the way I did this year, and make the most of it. I pray that every Muslim does the same. I pray that we live our lives the way we live Ramadan; to practice patience, pray more, read more Qur’an, give more charity, trust and praise Allah more, guard our tongues and be nicer to the people around us. How much of a better place would the world be? How much easier would our lives be? How much at ease would our hearts be knowing we have more of a chance to receive Allah’s shade on the day of Judgement? The day where nothing else will matter, but your deeds and good character.