The Princess in me Awaits

Have I told you guys the story of when I went out in search for a salon and spa right here in the town of nowhere? Right. I have not, huh? I can’t believe that has not come up. In all talks of all the adventures we’ve had, I left out the biggest and the least fun adventure of all. So, this town doesn’t have any decent place where I can go to give my little toes a break. How do I survive, you ask? Considering my toes were used to such fancy pampering at least once a month. Well, barely. We live, because what else are we going to do? Not live? That’s not really in my control. So to speak. Alright, staying positive. Trying not to get dark. Anywayssss…we were going on a trip. Yay! Always double yay for me because hotels have spas and salons and my body parts like hotels and salons.

This time however, I forgot that we were traveling *within* the country. I settle into the hotel. Next day I send the husband and the children off to some fun thing. Safari, zoo, butterfly hunting. Who knows (just kidding we don’t hunt stuff). No, really we don’t. We are the “other” kind of Muslims (and that folks is what we call a joke). So, I’m sitting there calling; trying to find a spa or any place that would take my feet and dunk them in hot water. Every single place would hear my voice on the other end of the phone and ask, “is this appointment for you?” Me: “Uhm, yes of course it’s for me.” The guy on the other end of the phone: “Ma’am this spa is only for men.” Huh? After a few of these similar conversations and after having a few people laugh in my face (this is not a joke, one lady LAUGHED OUT LOUD) I finally asked one person where I would be able to find a female spa. He said there are none. All decent spas and salons are only for men. He named a few spas that I could go to but I’d rather scrub my own feet in the shower with a 6 month old loofah than set foot in one of those.

Fun story, right? People keep telling me, it’s not so bad here, eventually you will get used to it. I will, I’m sure. Things will get better. I’ll find my way around this place. I’ll just have to travel outside of the country to find a decent spa. Only because I AM spoiled. Nothing wrong with a country that only caters to the male population and thinks it’s okay to send its women to the tetanus infested crummy parts of town for a simple mani/pedi. Yeah, I need to really look deep within me and modify this *princess* attitude.

“I’ll Draw A Flower For You”

There are days when nothing is making sense. Everything is upside down. You’re inside out, literally inside out. Anyone who has ever been real with them selves knows what I’m talking about. Nevertheless, for some of us it goes way beyond that. Many of you will recognize it if you are being real with yourselves as well. It’s that feeling that you cannot accomplish anything. The feeling that everything that is inside will spill out in a fit of rage and fire; The feeling that if you get out of bed everything around will fall to pieces. You will be left exposed. That opens the floodgates of tears. So, you stay in bed. Trying to keep your insides where they belong. Inside.

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Never really works out that way though, does it? It comes out one way or the other. Floods rarely can be contained. These things have a way of erupting. Strong and fast.

I know it seems like I’m giving out too much about my personal life but I’m really not. That’s everyone, everywhere at some point: Who hasn’t felt alone, and angry at some point in their life? That doesn’t mean we don’t have things to be thankful for or to be happy about. That just means things get muddy sometimes, and in those moments it gets hard to see through the stains and dirt. Clarity doesn’t come easy. Not everyone has the luxury of hiding away under the comforter either. You get up because you have to. Face life, do the bare minimum, make the least amount of waves because you don’t want to be triggered. Hope, and pray you can open every jar, and every Customer service representative is pleasant.

You can’t talk to anyone about this because what are you going to say? What are the words? How do you discuss something like this? You have learned to just tuck everything in, and smile. People like it when others smile, and deny their emotions. Makes life easier. Honestly, makes life easier for you too. How do you explain so much? How do you tell them why you missed so many events?

People genuinely care but they don’t understand that you are trying to put yourself back together. They can’t always understand that sometimes that process looks like you sitting in your PJs on your bed just trying to convince yourself that when the kids get home you are capable of letting loose. It’s in the realm of possibilities to have a good time rather than be a routine obsessed crazy woman. You don’t want to be that mom or that person, for that matter. You want your kids to be excited to come home. Going out, then coming to take care of them takes everything out of you. What people say, “go out, have fun. That will refresh you. You will be able to take care of the kids and the house better.” What happens is the exact opposite. As much as you love spending time with your friends you get exhausted. Completely drained. By the time you get back, and the kids get home you are crashing and most likely burning. The insides you are trying to keep hidden are pouring out. You need order. You need Quiet. Peace. How do you explain this to everyone?

No, this is not something that can ever be explained. So you just shut it all in, and stay inside. Explaining, dealing with the aftermath, it’s all too much.

However, sometimes all of the pieces fall right into place. The world makes sense, even if just for a brief moment. There is no regret. There is no pain. Well, there is always pain; but you can let go of it for just a little bit. Someone goes above and beyond for you. Someone sees you. Someone hears you.

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You give your children projects, blocks including a bunch of other stuff because today is one of those days. Maybe you really don’t want to be seen or heard. Your kid comes back with a blank piece of paper because he has made something imaginary. You want to be genuinely amused but you really don’t have it in you today. You give him a half smile, and say something “amusing” that escapes you the second after you say it. Something in your child awakens. He looks at you deeply. “What is it? What are you looking at? You inquire.” “Mama, I’ll draw a flower for you.” He runs out. His brother comes in a few minutes later. “Dawud is going to draw a flower for you, and I’m going to help him, what’s your favorite color? Because we really really want you to like it.” Just like that, you know. REALLY know that somebody wants to draw flowers for you and wants you to really like it. Not for any other reason but to make you happy.

There is a little bit less mud in that muddy puddles. The fog has not lifted, it’s not that easy, but this is a first day for less muddy waters.