Ten Things about Pain

1. When life does not give me what I want, the fault might not lie with life, but with my expectations.

2. When I want something badly and do not get it, God invariably compensates for it by giving me something else, usually much better. I just have to make sure that my disappointment does not prevent me from noticing that.

3. Sometimes, when I got what I wanted, I realized that it was not as big a deal as I imagined it to be and the euphoria of success died away too soon. Mostly, the effort and the anxiety are way more enjoyable than the actual success.

4. What I got (or didn’t get) are things of the past. What I am and can be are things that drive me forward.

5. Ignoring or suppressing the pain does not help. It is okay to cry and get it out of your system. Sometimes all a pain requires from you is acknowledgement.

6. Convincing myself that nothing bad would ever happen is futile. Becoming the person who can transform any tragedy into an opportunity is much more fun.

7. When my brain tells me that I just cannot go on, I just need to tell my brain that I can. The brain gets tired and just needs a little rest, I need to empty it of all fears and thoughts and then fill it with what I want.

8. Courage does not mean that I don’t feel pain; it means that I don’t let it hamper my progress.

9. Failure to feel any pain is not valor; it is numbness and could signal a mental or physical malfunction.

10. Life is sometimes like a video game. When it gets hard, it just means that you have played well and have reached a higher level.

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Things I learned from my mother

Depending on the kind of hand life deals us, we spend our lives fighting for survival, striving to make it big, trying to achieve something the world will remember us for etc. But if we just take a moment out of this mad race and reflect, maybe we will realize that this is not the only path available to us. There is a higher and apparently much easier option once we put our minds to it. Looking at my mother’s life, who lived an ordinary life in the most extraordinary manner, I have learnt that maybe all you need is the capacity to

1. Smile and laugh under all circumstances because no matter what problems lie before you, there are always more blessings than troubles. You just need to notice them once in a while.

2. Cry when you feel like without any inhibitions, especially before God. If He didn’t like people crying, he would not have created this emotion in the first place. Let it go when it becomes too much to bear, it’ll relax you and give you the strength to start afresh.

3. Provide a shoulder when someone else needs to cry. Some people just cannot make sense of things by themselves and they don’t need advice or lectures. All they require is an ear that is listening and a shoulder that doesn’t judge.

4. Always be there for others, whether it is an occasion for celebration or mourning or anything that is important to them. Don’t let your presence be a favor to them; be there as if it is their right. Let them trust you. That way, you are helping them even when you are away from them. Just the feeling that one can rely on someone makes problems less scary.

5. Never lose hope however big the troubles seem. Problems are never too big; it’s the person facing them who is sometimes too small.

6. Love everyone from the heart. Don’t just pretend. Love begets love and it makes life so much easier and fun.

7. Always be ready to listen. Take interest in the stuff being said just because it is important to the person who is talking.

8. Never complain. When someone treats you badly, treat him great in return. It may or may not make him realize his error but it will surely make you the greater person.

9. Be frank with God. He doesn’t mind crying or complaining or anything of the sort. Ask only Him for whatever you want. As for the rest of the world, don’t ask, just give.

10. Make sure that you are the source of good for everyone that comes to you. You will not succeed in pleasing everyone, but any enmity or displeasure would be because of misperceptions on the others’ part. You will sleep soundly at night and have no fears whatsoever.

Sounds easier said than done? Of course it is. But it does make more sense than to keep on trying to get richer and higher on the social food chain. And Amma made it look easy.

Don’t tell me it never happened…

AND DON’T TELL ME IT NEVER HAPPENED. REMEMBER WHEN…..

1. You stared at a digital watch continuously in the last minute of the hour to catch the moment when all numbers changed at once?

2. You tried to control your pee and succeeded for hours, only to fail seconds before you got your pants off?

3. The cop signaled to the car behind you or right in front of you to stop and your heart sank, even though you weren’t doing anything wrong?

4. Your wife or parents or someone called and asked where you were, and you spontaneously lied, without any reason at all?

5. You met someone and couldn’t remember his/her name and kept making lame efforts to get him to tell it, like ‘how do you spell your name?’

6. You nodded your head when asked if you knew about something even when you had no idea what it was?

7. You told a story claiming it happened to someone you know, when actually you had just heard it from someone who claimed it had happened to someone he/she knew?

8. You laughed at a joke or a witty remark hiding the fact that you did not get it?

9. You did not recognize the voice on the phone but pretended that you did, all the while trying to recall the name?

10. You pressed ‘like’ on a status not because you liked it, but because you wanted people to see that you liked such stuff?

Pakistan Idol

What if it was somehow possible for Bushra Ansaari, Ali Azmat and Hadiqa Kayani to audition for Pakistan Idol in front of the same three judges? Would they have been selected? I think not.

It would be fun to imagine what the reactions of the judges might have been if Ali Azmat had come and sang Pappu Yaar in front of them. Initially the three judges would have made those wide-eyed faces showing that they were having trouble believing what this guy was singing. And then they might have said this,

Bushra Ansari: Hai, kitni mushkil mein tha ye bacchha. Aap ko bohat log tang kartey hain lagta hai. Allah aap ko sehat de. Aur iss ka hairstyle to dekho. Iss tarah ke tainday ke saath to Pappu yaar tang karey ga na!

Ali Azmat: Mera khayal hai aap khud apney aap ko ziada tang kar rahey thay. Aap ki body movements aur shaklain daikh ke to mein darr gaya. Beta ye gaana aap ke liye nahi. Saaf nazar aa raha hai ke iss se aap ko bohat takleef hoti hai.

Hadiqa: Oonchay notes mein ja ke aap ki awaaz badal see jati hai. Aur mujhay star quality nazar nahi aayee. Aap bas apni Ammi ke saamney gaya karein. Balkey wo bhee na he gaya karein.

After listening to Hadiqa sing

Bushra: Style hai bacchi ka! Gaana waana to nahi aata lekin style poora hai. Aap modeling mein behtar chal sakti ho.

Ali Azmat: Aap ko bohat mehnat ki zaroorat hai. Moonh ziada khul jaata hai lekin sur koi nahi nikalta. Meri taraf se to No.

Hadiqa: I like your personality. But ye singing competition hai. Aap ko bohat mehnat ki zaroorat hai.

On Bushra Ansari

Bushra: Kitni cute hai ye. Itni pyaari. Gaana bas theek hai, par bohat he cute larki hai. Kya adayein hain.

Ali: Aap ki apni awaaz, aap ka apna style nazar nahi aa raha. You seem to be copying others. Apni koi shanakht nahi hai.

Hadiqa: I like your smile but aap ko bohat grooming chahiye. I don’t think you are suited for Pakistan Idol.

“Though I didn’t give much importance to your criticism bachhay, I think a little dose of truth won’t hurt here. The concept of not hurting someone’s feelings has been misused too much. I don’t lie just to save someone’s feelings from being hurt. If a person asks me whether I like him or not, I’ll tell him the truth. Remember! Your words and actions are like tools. Don’t hit someone in the face with your hammer. Bit if someone keeps hitting his face on your hammer, don’t give it much thought. In fact you might be perfectly justified in laughing at him.” Shuntoo