Tonight I went to an open mic session hosted by the interesting Scottish-born revert, Nusayba Brazzo. She shared some of her creative poetry. Two of the ladies expressed that they admired Nusayba’s  expressive, unreserved nature and wished they could be like that. I said that they can, they’ve just got to believe and allow themselves to. Nusayba then opened the floor. I didn’t attend with the intention of sharing and maybe I wasn’t entirely comfortable to at that point. Then the the guest speaker, Aunty Fatima Phillips, spoke about reinventing oneself. I believe that Allah chooses where where we need to be at every moment, and at this point in time, I am reinventing me. She said, “Don’t die with your music inside of you.” She spoke of wanting to speak to crowds of people and its not about wanting to be famous but simply to share. That totally resonated with me. I love speaking and sharing my story. When she was done, I shared a piece of my blog. It inspired me to have a ladies-only open mic session for my upcoming birthday. I feel that as hijaabis, we don’t get enough opportunities, if any, to take off our hijab and let our hair down and just be. Just last night I submitted an assignment on Carl Rogers’ personality theory and how my personality was formed. It brought up some strong emotions. At the same time it was empowering to consciously acknowledge that I didn’t get the love and affection I needed as a child, and to understand the extent that affected my self-worth and my subsequent decisions. It even influenced the life partner I chose and degree I enrolled in. I’m excited about my journey of reinvention and can’t wait to wake up in the morning InShaAllah. 

PS: If you didn’t read that post, here is the portion I shared:

In order to be successful, one has to have a vision and mission in life. And not an airy fairy “I just wanna be happy” or “I just wanna be successful.” Having a thought-out vision statement is so important that Allah documents the vision statement of Iblees, and isn’t he incredibly successful? Well, in this world, at least.

Iblees in detail explains “I will sit in wait for them on the Your straight path. Then I will come to them from in front of them and from behind them and on their right and on their left and you will not find most of them grateful.” In another place Iblees further clarifies his vision into a mission statement when he says, “I will surely take from among your servants a specific portion. And I will mislead them and I will arouse them in [sinful] desires, and I will command them so they will slit the ears of cattle, and I will command them so they will change the creation of Allah.” If Iblees has such a detailed vision and mission, what about us? What about you and me? What is your personal vision and mission? Have you ever given it any thought? Or do you go through life just trying to get through the day? Never stopping to think, isn’t there more to life than this rat race? What would it feel like to wake up feeling alive, excited to start your day?

Well, Allah didn’t create us without a vision for us. A very beautiful, vivid vision. A vision of palaces and gardens beneath which rivers flow, servants at our beck and call, wait we don’t even have to ask for what we want. This vision is our ultimate reward, the highest levels of Jannah. Our palaces are already built for us, but we refuse them every time we don’t wake up for Fajr, neglect our other salaat, every time we forget about Allah. Beyond our vision, Allah didn’t leave us to figure out what our mission on this earth is. You all know the ayah off the top of your head “And I have not created Jinn and mankind expect to worship Me.”

Many of us think of worship as limited to the masjid, salaah, fasting, maybe thikr. But our entire lives can be an act of worship with the right intention. An intention is all it takes. An accepted intention that I made 5 years ago was all it took to get me where I am today, Alhamdulillah. 

Pictures of the quirky place the open mic session took place at: