It’s finally happening.
You were both at a shaddi and you were wearing your replica of Deepika’s outfit in the climax of Om Shanti Om, and he was dressed in that sherwaani that could only look better on Zayn Malik.
The dulhan was entering, and you took it to throw rose petals and laugh, throwing your head back in a way you thought was bollywood-esque but in reality, looked like you had epilepsy.
Hey, if he wasn’t looking, the creepy cameraman was pointing the camera in your direction, so might as well make it in the background of the video in all your red lipstick glory.
You nonchalantly glance around to “look for your brother”, and out of the corner of your eye, notice a captivated glare. A wave of excitement overcomes you are you mentally plan your shaddi cake topper: a gold-spray painted samosa.
But wait! Bae isn’t looking, but what appears to be a large plum is.
HIS MOM IS LOOKING! AH! AH! AH! You make your way over for a hug and exchange of “Salam, where’s your mom?/You look so sweet!/Let me see your mehndi!”, then make a point to bring her a glass of lemonade. Heck, you even offer to the aunty next to her who once told your mom to “give you some dieting”. You’re succumbing to gender roles and have lost your self respect wow wow wow...Or are you being respectful and dutiful? Wow wow wow this is hard.
But you don’t care anymore. You hate wearing makeup, but winged your eyeliner in hopes of seeing him. You love to be social, but keep staring at your lock screen at dawats (tsk tsk). You care about your bangs not flopping properly or a hijab pin sticking out of the side of your head. You’ve practiced your “Salam, brother” in the mirror twenty times. Your grades are dropping. You’re jealous of people who get to breathe the same air as him. You want to make rotis for him. You want to call his dad “Papa”. YOU ARE TRIPPIN, GAL.
Clearly, crushes debilitate us. After all, they’re called “crushes” for a reason.
And you guys are probably thinking I had a break up or something (who da heck u think i am), but I don’t believe in premarital relationships. And besides the obvious fact that physically being in a relationship isn’t permitted in islam, there are soOoooo0o0000O many reasons why it’s not my scene. And clearly, this article applies to both guys and girls, but it’s written from a female point of view because MISANDRY!!!
Even islamically, liking people is normal. Feelings are normal. Dressing up so you feel confident is normal. Here’s what’s not: obsessively checking your reflection in your phone, mentally reciting Bollywood dialogue to him during Algebra, and looking like a disheveled raccoon because your eyeliner just won’t straighten out.
For some reason, crushes and love (or whatever) are seen as taboo topics in muslim/desi households. These are issues we encounter on a daily basis and must learn to confront, question, and eventually, quiesce. So today, I’m going to slap these issues and the face and demand a rematch. BRANG IT, BUDDIE BOY.
Because at the end of the day, they are, alas, a waste of time (especially if you’re 13). Here’s why.
They control you.
When you like someone, you begin to modify your exterior and opinions to match their expectations. If he likes Beyonce, you go bask in the sun and practice your falsetto in the shower. If he likes loud girls, you make cacophonous whale noises during class. If he likes chubby girls, you got the Shalimar buffet up in ‘yo belly.
2. Their presence restricts you.
When he’s around, you can’t be yourself. You become so conflicted and consumed with how flimsy your chin looks when you smile, you can’t seem to have fun. You can’t make the jokes you want to.You hold back your lovely snorts mid laughter. Do not tie yourself down, sister paaji. You own that runway, you W E R K.
3. It’s a waste of time.
I guess it’s cool if you want to get married to him, but that might not work if you’re fifteen or if he still wears crocs.
4. It’s too much work.
It’s hard being a potato. It’s even harder caring what a carrot thinks. Especially a peasantry carrot. *insert hair flip emoji*
5. It’s a distraction.
People eventually die. GPA is forever. #TeamDoctorEngineerLawyer #TeamParentsPaisa #AintNoWifey
The minute you address more importance to someone than yourself, you’re losing. Be selfish: learn, create, discover and live. There is so much you don’t know. Every minute you spend over this person is a minute you weren’t working on benefitting yourself.
But at the end of day, we’re all human. I’m not suggesting that we all become automaton misanthropes. I’m simply saying that we should limit ourselves to what we do/how we do it because it all really is in da lawd’s hands.
So if you’re going to marry a gulab jamun, it’s pre determined, no matter how many rasgullahs, laddos, or jalebis you text, it’s prodigal. I know how hard it is to accept a gulab jamun when you’ve tried a laddo, but you have to comply with da plan and trust that everything happens for a reason.
Because who knows?
It might just turn out that your gulab jamun is warm and served with vanilla ice cream.
If you continue reading this, you will approach your death.
Actually, even if you don’t, you’re still approaching your death.
Dying is inevitable, and it will happen to us all. Whether you’re a toothless, forty year old chef at Denny’s with an penchant for zebra print and hot pink or Steve Jobs, someday, somehow, you’ll go to bed and kind of forget to wake up…for a really long time.
Now, let’s get personal and uncomfortable!
Am I afraid of dying? omg yes. Do I want to die? Hmm...eventually. People get boring, quandaries arise, and you just kind of get tired of this trivial routine that has become your life. I’m not some suicidal misanthrope. Quite the opposite, really. Guys, I love my life. My family’s a capricious adventure. Also, you don’t get two, warm apple pies from McDonalds for a dollar in the grave. I do believe in an afterlife, yeah, and (god forbid) I somehow end up in hell when I can’t even watch a bleach blond named Tiffany lock herself in a tanning bed.
The point is, when I die, there’s a few things you guys need to make it your life mission to happen, for the love of Doob.
(I wrote this whole blog post for that line)
At school, you write a lengthy, cohesive, productive, “to-do” list of tasks you wish to accomplish, then when you get home...it’s all s'mores and vines.
Then precalculus exists.
Zayn Malik gets married.
You accidentally offend someone.
Your mom insists you become apt in the art of making rotis.
Your crush wants to nikkah someone (N O T Y O U).
Free body diagrams aren’t what they sound like. #ModernDayHippieMovement? I think not.
The big takeaway here is that stuff happens.
People don’t like you, you aren’t satisfied with your grades, that one annoying kid in class still breathes, etc. Don’t let it bring you down though. Your happiness doesn’t depend on the numbers stamped on a paper. Your worth is not determined by how many people commented on your wall for your birthday. And well, that kid is a creamy loon, so HA.
And although you may agree with all the statements above, I’m going to inform you that they’re all wrong.
Your grades determine your standing and future. You don’t know why, but how many likes you got on your most recent profile picture annoys you more than you think, and that’s okay.
And that annoying kid? He’s still a loon.
And your crush, he’s a jerk. If he’s too slow to realize that you’s a dime plus ten billionteen, his loss. You didn’t get into your dream college? Life’s not over. Your rotis aren’t round? Round rotis are overrated.
I bet Deepika’s rotis are round, though.
We’re always so worried about people’s expectations and the *gasp* “LOUG KYA KAHENGAY?!” (what will people say) that we often forget what we want. Who cares if Shagufta Aunty disapproves of your gpa? Her son resembles a snappy chihuahua and never even attempts to make small talk with your Dad. Also, he’s ten.
Let’s stop living for other people. Let’s be fat, let’s keep our promises, let’s trim our bangs by ourselves. Let’s wear desi clothes in public, let’s embrace who we are and appreciate our backgrounds and skills.
It’s cold out.
In America at least.
The christmas trees are up, multicolored lights align stairways, roofs, and porches, and we have now grown accustomed to take pictures with HOT drinks at Starbucks. And, c’mon you doofenshmirtz… why not celebrate with overpriced beverages and cookies shaped like snowmen?
2014 has been a robust year.
I can’t say much about you, but 2014 has probably been the most dynamic year of my life. SO MUCH has happened. I’ve lost friends, I’ve met some of my now (Snapchat) best friends, I’ve chopped off 6 inches of my hair (it’s not a phase, mom), got a job, made my first paycheck (thats what happens when you have a job, sweetie!), began working as a writer for Brown Girl Magazine, taken up art, started yoga, conquered so many of my fears, switched schools, and have even strengthened bonds with the important people in my life. I also discovered Jus Reign and made it my life goal to convert and marry him.
Jai hind, ya cantankerous lards.
Below are some of the things 2014 has taught me.
But I like to think I’m a positive person so I’m going to just add that for every friend I’ve lost, I’ve made eleventeen more.
2. If you do not seek, you will find.
This lesson is true in every case except hide and seek. Do people like hop into a black hole during that game or like into a time reversing vortex or something? I never find anyone in that game like omg how annoying.
This lesson though, is applicable mainly (again omg dubira u loser)in the field of friendship. I made a really good friend in a prose class this year. The next through a freaking newspaper committee. Tis is the power of complacency. Yeah, I was friendly, but I didn’t expect for it all to happen. How? I’m not exactly sure, but I’m glad it did. What the heck did I just said.
3. STOP OVERTHINKING.
Omg, how cute it that top? guuurrrrllll, snap crackle pop! But wait...it’ll make your “muffin top” conspicuous. And then aunties will stare, and then spread rumors about how you stole a koala and hid it from your parents for ten years. Also, about how you have a boyfriend/girlfriend and got arrested for selling pirated bollywood films to a convict.
You know it’s not true.
Your mom knows it’s not true.
Da lawd knows its not true.
Stop letting overthinking take over your stanking life, person. You can seriously be whoever you want to be. Dress how YOU want to (but crop tops are soooo 2012). Write about what YOU want. Eat whatever YOU want (except fetal pigs, c’mon das nasty). Memorize whatever surahs YOU want. Love whatever YOU want. You, yes you, with that zit on your forehead (sorry try again next time), furry sideburns, and mushroom-resembling toes, are in control of your destiny!
Now, if you keep up with me through social media (ESPECIALLY INSTAGRAM I LOVE INSTAGRAM, DO YOU LOVE INSTAGRAM? LETS LOVE INSTAGRAM OMG) you know that I’m constantly posting pictures of the randomest of things in my “basic” glory, from fruit juices to selfies of the agglomeration of yeast that has become my face. I know that some of you guys go on instagram every day and realllyyy want to post something, but don’t because you’re scared of people judging you.
And girl, don’t! YOUR life starts the day you stop living everyone’s else’s. So post fifty selfies tonight (keep it halal doe, i see u), and if it makes you happy, let it be. Post a picture of that pizza slice girl….oh it’s a selfie?
4. Your Happiness depends on YOU.
So a big craze, especially as teenagers, is this whole phenomena that we all need significant others to be happy, or just need to be surrounded by people and be popular to attain inner peace. This is so far from the truth, I roll my afro covered head back and chuckle.
HA. HA. HA. HA. HA.
Whenever your happiness relies on the presence of others, you’re making yourself so vulnerable to others’ opinions. You’re not really yourself anymore, you’re just a failed embodiment of everything everyone else wants you to be.
Who cares if people don’t like what you have to say? It’s what you believe, so its you. And you is beautiful. You is perfectionista. You is uniqua. You is swag yolo. You is 13457% bae. You is hastag natural beauty.
Werk it, mini Beyonce.
Wake up like dat, girl.
All in all, live your own life, you pregnant walrus. Hold the door open for strangers. Smile at the weird kid. Don’t do drugs. Pretend you didn’t see the old asian women picking her nose at the stoplight. Buy a hobo a coffee.
It’s been a good year. You’re still alive, right? Your arms and legs in tact, your heart beating? Make it a good life.
Here’s to another year of things I’ll probably regret doing next year.