Thursday, October 30, 2008

Muslims and Halloween.....I don't get it

So, tomorrow is Halloween (let's throw a party....NOT)

I don't get it! What I mean is I don't understand this new (or maybe just to me) concept of Muslims celebrating Halloween. I mean, don't get me wrong I celebrated it back in the day when I was a kid. I even dressed up as a Ninja Turtle or something (Donatello, I think) but I think the last Halloween I celebrated was when I was 6. After that, I think my dad or the Imam at the masjid put a stop to it or something. Besides, as my parents like to say "times have changed, you can't trust people now a days." I remember coming home with my sack full of candy and then having it meticulously searched by my mom and dad before I could eat it. But that is besides the point! The point is, for years we've been told about the Haraamness of Halloween and I totally agree with it..I think its totally pagan and haraam in every way, what I don't get is how and why Muslims have started to delve back into celebrating makes no sense. And as if the haraamness comes from going out into the streets and dressing up as someone, lets have a costume party at the masjid on HALLOWEEN! What is happening to this ummah?

I had a conversation with Mr. Possiblity about this matter. He apparently attended a Halloween party this week. He validated it by telling me that it was an event for his masters program....khair. He could tell that I was annoyed by what he had said and then asked me what the big deal was. What's the big deal??? Are you kidding me?? You just told me that you engaged in this kafir/pagan party and now you're asking me what the big deal is?! Needless to say I haven't spoken to him in a week. URGH.

To some people - Like Mr. Possibility - Dressing up as someone you're not and attending a party where everyone else is dressed up as someone they're not is not a big deal. And perhaps when you say it like that it isn't a big deal, but when you look back to see why you're dressed up and why you engage in that practice you'd have to be an idiot to not see the danger and sin in it. Or perhapse I'm the idiot...only Allah knows. The way I see it, its better to just stay away completely.

As for Mr. Possiblity...I wish he would change, not for me...but for himself, for the sake of Allah. I told my parents that I would TRY to make it work. And if it does, Alhamdulilah and if not Alhamdulilah...Allah (SWT) is the best of planners.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

As if I wasn't confused enough....

He threw yet another curve ball.

Yesterday was my day off, so I took major advantage of it and spent my time out, with my friends. It was rather nice: A few good friends, lunch out in the grass, overlooking a nearby lake...pure bliss. I definitely was not expecting the following was the last thing on my mind.

Anyways, after praying Maghrib at a friends apartment, I made my way back home. As I pull up to my driveway, I see 2 cars parked out by my house...two very familiar cars. My parents didn't tell me there were going to be visitors. If I had known I definitely would not be wearing THIS hijaab, and OMG I'm so sweaty from playing soccer. The cars? My brother's car was blocking the driveway as it always does on the weekends when he comes by with his daughter and the other....are you ready for this? Mr. Possibility's car was parked on my driveway....IN MY SPOT. Naturally, I parked my car on the street. The keys remained in the ignition and my headlights remained on - I sat there for what seemed like hours, but in actuality was probably just a couple minutes. What the - what is he doing here? Does my hijaab look okay? Where's my lip gloss? Maybe its not him....maybe his parents came in his car, but then why are they here? The questions are bombarding my mind, almost like my neurons are having some kind of party. I can't deny that I didn't feel like turning on my car and taking off, but I didn't. Instead, I took a deep breath, looked at myself in the mirror, pulled the keys out of the ignition and made my way to my front door.

I opened the door and peeked my head in, the way I do when I'm home really late and I want to see if my mom is sitting on the couch waiting for me before I start to dish out the 101 reasons why I'm late. Only this time, my mom wasn't on the couch....he was. This is not happening!! Only, it was. Well you can't shut the door and leave may as well go in. "Assalamualaikum" I say generally, loud enough for people to hear, but quiet enough to not invite any unwarranted conversation. And then, I quickly run upstairs. As I ran up the stairs, I noticed a bouquet of flowers on the coffee table. No, seriously, this isn't happening. When I got in my room, I sat on my bed, staring at the mirror as if it was going to give me answers, and it didn't.

My phone buzzes - a text message - from him. "I didn't come here to see your parents you know..." This is happening. I changed my clothes - a nicer hijaab and an nicer smelling abaya, put on a little lip gloss and made my way downstairs again. I swear my heart was pounding so fast it felt like it was gonna jump out of my chest. His parents are sitting down with my parents and he's sitting with my brother. They all seemed to be engaged in conversation that suddenly ceased when I walked downstairs. AWKWARD! Again I say salaams, this time it was loud enough for me to hear over my beating heart.

His mom jumps off her seat and greets me with this huge hug and kiss. I was too nervous to even say a word to him, I didn't even want to look at him. When I said talk to my dad, I didn't mean come over!!! I find a seat next to my mom. Again, my phone buzzes. I should have left that stupid phone upstairs!

With any aunty hook-up thing, or any aunty get together thing for that matter, there was tea and cookies. My mother elbows me and says "Why don't you see if Mr. Possiblity wants any." If looks could kill, I think my mother might have been dead tonight (May Allah (SWT) protect her). I didn't ask him if he wanted any, but instead his mother called him to the table. As if that's not awkward enough, my mother and his mother leave the table and we're left to sit there. Why is this so hard?? I've known him my whole life.

He tells a couple dumb jokes to ease the tension off of me a little - I suppose the comic relief helped a bit. We talked for a while. And by "we talked" I mean he talked, I say a couple of words in response to his questions and we suffered through a million awkward silences.

The verdict? I have decided to give it a shot. His parents and my parents seem very interested in this union and I love them all very dearly. So for them - and for a bit of guilty pleasure - I am going to make this work.

They leave...another buzz...."How's that for my grand gesture? Sweet dreams"

Thursday, October 16, 2008

"Adult code blue to the emergency room..."

As a nurse, these words are all to familiar. I hear them day in and day out, sometimes even more than once a day. Although I don't work on the emergency unit, the statement is made over the intercom for health care workers to hear. It never bothered me, to me it was normal - part of the job - I often pay no attention to it, other times I get this rush of adrenalin and almost a sense of excitement and I'm ashamed to say that sometimes the thought of "oh, how cool, I wish that was my patient" crosses my mind. I'm not a harsh person, I love my patients and I care about them, I also get very attached to them, but there's just something about a coding patient that brings the super hero in you out. It's the pull your hair up in a ponytail (even though mines in hijaab), roll your sleeves up and get to work kind of adrenaline rush. Its amazing (and I know right now I sound like the most insensitive person ever) it just feels good to have the ability to save a person's life. But then it hit me today as the code was on my floor. Alhamdulilah my patients were just fine. My friend's patient coded and while I saw the excitement in her eyes, I also saw the fear in her eyes - the fear that she would lose her patient.

Then it dawned on me - the angel of death could be in this hospital right now, in this patients room, less than a couple of feet away from me. The thought sent chills down my back. All this time as I walk on to this unit, I walk on like I'm Wonder Woman, ready to conquer any situation that comes my way and suddenly I was humbled. Sometimes even the toughest of medical measures and chest compressions and "heroic events" as they call it here at the hospital is no match for Allah (SWT) when he calls, the soul goes - Time of death 0945.

Death visits this hospital every day. After today, I've begun to wonder if the angel of death is in my patient's room when I come in to do my vitals or go in to give them their lunch or while I'm sitting in the break room taking care of my charting - the thought gives me goosebumps. It's almost like the feeling I get as I drive by grave yards - how quiet and peaceful it looks on the outside, serene, almost like a dream, but only Allah (SWT) knows the horror and the dread the person in the grave is going through as he is inflicted with azhab al-qabr. May Allah (SWT) protect us all (ameen).

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Female Medical Professionals at the Time of the Prophet (SAW)

Before I start this post, I want to thank Amaat al-Kareem for inspiring me to write an entry on this topic. Alhamdulilah, it gave me an opportunity to educate myself. Insha'Allah you will find this information as interesting and awe-inspiring as I have. Subhan'Allah these women were amazing to say the least!

Much of what we know today in regards to medicine and surgery is due to the contribution of the Muslim world. Perhaps this is a topic that I will write about on another day.

We all know from the history of Islam that there were many battles and with all these battles it was inevitable for soldiers to be wounded and even killed. So, who took care of these wounded soldiers? Who helped them regain optimum health? This is where the Women come in! Islamic History is laden with stories of extraordinary women doing extraordinary things - Nursing the sick back to health is one of those things.

Rufaidah bint Sa'd was the first professional Nurse in Islamic history. Her father was a physician from who she learned her skills and knowledge by serving as his assistant. She lived during the life of the Prophet (SAW) and would tend to those who were sick or wounded in battle. Her tent was equipped with supplies necessary to perform surgery and administer first aide care. When Sa'd ibn Mua'dh was injured in the battle of the trenceh, the prophet (SAW) directed him to her tent to seek medical aide. Rufaidah bint Sa'd set up a tent outside of the Prophet's (SAW) tent and would tend to the ill who came to her. It is important to note that she didn't just limit her service to society through medicine, but also participated as a social worker helping the orphans, the disabled and the elderly. She worked to help solve the problems within society that would contribute to health problems. She would also care fo the orphans and teach them life skills.

Other women skilled in medicine and nursing included: Umm Muta', Umm Kabashah, Hamnah bint Jahsh, Mu'adhah, Laila, Umaimah, Umm Zaid, Umm 'Atiyyah, and Umm Sulaim.

Sources: London Met ISOC, Crescent Life

Unfortunately, I couldn't find a more throrough compilation of stories on these extraordinary women online. Perhaps there is a book or something of that sort somewhere. Insha'Allah I will keep my eye out for it. If any of you know of a book, website or even a CD set that has an in depth account of the lives of these women, please either send me an email or a comment.

Jazak'Allah Khair.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Its time for another girly post....

In all honesty, I hate the girly side of me. You know the side that thinks about guys (usually in my case its one particular one..i think I've long outgrown the constant crushing stage of life), the side who over analyzes things and the side that cares too much about what the other person thinks or feels even though you swear to yourself up and down that you don't care.....I HATE IT!!

A couple months ago, I wrote about Mr. Possibility and how somehow or the other he managed to squeeze himself back into my life and how I was confused as to what to do or how to deal with it (um...just read the post). I'm not usually one to speak about my feelings, which is one of the reasons I started this blog in the first discuss how I feel inside, get advice, hear your input all the while not being judged (besides, even if you judge don't know for sure who I am).

Two months ago, following my best friend's wedding, Mr. Possibility wiggled his way back into my life. It first started off with a couple of glances from all the way across the room to online messages about how sorry he was for ever doing anything to hurt me and how he wanted a second chance. Like any girl, the attention made me feel good in a weird way. For the longest, despite the closeness of our families (his father and my uncle are best friends) I have managed to steer clear of him, deliberately not going to his house when I know he's there or outright ignoring him when he's around. I find it, however, interesting that after we had agreed to be "friends" and call it a truce how I see him everywhere. The funniest thing is that he doesn't even live in the same state as me!!! And if I don't see him, I hear about him.

The other day my aunt was like "hey Hijaabified Beauty, what do you think about Mr. Possibility??" I think you and him would make a wonderful couple....I nearly choked on my tea. My mom even thinks he's a great prospect...I mean who wouldn't...he's good looking, funny, he loves his family and alhamdulilah they are well to do, my only problem is his religiousity. I wish he was the type of brother that would drop everything he was doing to go pray salatul asr, even if he's out shopping at the mall, but he isn't, at least not from what I see. The other day I ran into him at this place that I always study at (he was in town for Eid), he said salams and sat at my table and attempted to study with me, and when I asked him just what he thought he was doing he made it seem like there was no big deal in he and I studying together - afterall we were in a public place. When I explained that it was a big deal for me, he kind of gave me this weird look and sat somewhere else. I was releived, but I won't lie - I felt bad...I think I hurt his feelings.

After all these years and all the changes that we went through, I still care what he thinks, I still worry that I hurt his feelings, I still wonder what he's upto. I don't think its that I still see him as Mr. Possiblity, or at least I hope I don't. I keep telling myself that...."Hb, its not going to work out, move on, he's not your type." Then why did I reject a proposal that came my way recently? Why is it when I got that proposal I thought what would Mr. Possiblity think? I still hurt when he hurts, I still think how he's doing living so far away from home, I still get that rollercoaster dipping feeling in my stomach when he smiles at me after all these years, and I still get that warm feeling in body when his parents are so nice to me. When I'm around his family I get this fuzzy feeling, BUT I can not see myself raising good Muslim children with him. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME!!?

I don't really think I'm looking for a real answer...I just needed to tell someone....thanks for listening.

PS: I could use a TON of dua's right now.