Praise to the Most High

Not to be a boomer or anything, but…

Thank God (Alhamdulilah) for it all.

I remember back in high school feeling this constant pit in my stomach, feeding every negative thought and allowing myself to identify as worthless. I would question Allah, why me, what have I done to deserve this.

I remember going up to my father, with my knees trembling; I said to him “Dada, I’m depressed”.

“Balam, tu chi megi?” Or better translated, what are you saying. I broke down in tears as I tried to break down my sorrow.

His face expressed an emotion I had never seen. Confused? Angry? Disappointed?

Holding the years of rage back in his voice, he smiles at me and says “don’t let go of yourself”.

At the time I was saddened even more by his response. Him telling me I had no right to be depressed, reminding me of the fact that he would get beaten on the streets for the little pocket change he would make selling mantu on the streets of Badakhshan. How he had to stay hungry at times to uphold the illusion in the household that everything was indeed fine.

This feeling of guilt overcame me. First I was sad about my life, and now I feel horrible about reminding my father about his past. If anyone has the right to be depressed in this household it would be my parents who travelled continents away from their parents’ burial ground to guarantee me success. Yet I was still down.

On a lonely October night I remember vividly, losing faith in this world. News of my family back home having their freedoms stripped. My aunt being widowed. My romantic pursuit being nullified. It had all crashed down on me.

A beautiful thought emerged, “who is the one that could fix it all?”, so I went to the mosque. I prayed that night spilling the river that I had suppressed.

As I was finishing up, an elderly man sat beside me, raised his hands and said Ameen as I concluded my plea to Allah. “No English” he said, but smiles don’t need translation.

I felt weightless, a reminder that I am protected. A reminder that I am protected for a reason. Don’t take your blessings for granted. Be grateful and give thanks to the most high.

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