.بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
ش (‘Sh’) works at the local primary school, as a Teaching Assistant. She’d been there a decade ago; she is still there now. And she doesn’t look as though she’s even aged, Maa Shaa Allah .
ش’s son also attends this same primary school that his mother works at. ز. Her “youngest”. And he. Is absolutely adorable, Allah hummabārik.
Of course, he has to wait for his mother to be done with work, before he can be done at school. I think he generally attends the school’s ‘After School Club’, where they play, have some snacks, go outside.
I’ve seen ز at an event at the masjid, too. East London Mosque. At a bustling women’s Bazār. Organised by the Muslim women’s group that ش is an active member of. And, so is my aunt. My mum helps out there too, with taking care of the kids. A lady whose two sons I have tutored: as we’d later discovered… is also a member of this organisation.
Today I discovered that ش also has two nephews: the sons of her sister who also works at this village-like primary school. Their names are: Binyameen. And, Ibrahim, I think she’d said. Binyameen is such a beautiful name, Maa Shaa Allah . Otherwise known as ‘Benjamin’. ش nicknames this nephew of hers, ‘Benny‘.
She said that their mum might want for them to be tutored in English too. And so I think I need to strive to deliver excellent lessons. Because: it’s such a great honour, to be trusted with such roles. By mothers, by aunties.
My little cousin ع finished school at 03:30PM today. And my brother finished school an hour later, at 04:30.
Between then and then: I saw م, who had been my class’ Teaching Assistant, a decade ago. He’s now my cousin ع’s teacher. A really good teacher, Maa Shaa Allah . ع says that sometimes م would pick up certain books outside of school, while doing his own shopping I think, and if he thinks the book would be good for his class and help their learning: he’d buy the book to read to them.
ع then went and played football for a bit. I sat on a nearby hill, and thought about something. Something that has been weighing heavy on my heart and mind. But recently I’ve been contemplating about how: practically every time I have these ‘snap’ judgements that are negative… They get disproven. It’s pretty exceptional, AlHamduli Llah . And so: irrespective of old, old scars and ‘protective’, ‘defensive’ ways of thinking: we have to try to look at the world, and people, and the Qadr of Allah through only beautiful eyes. The practice of doing so is known as: حسن الظن.
Shifting even our thoughts to: goodness, beauty, and excellence.
My little cousin ع, as effortlessly, calmly, savage as this boy can be: is very respectful, Maa Shaa Allah . You tell him, five more minutes of playing football, and then it’s time to go: he listens. Today, he wanted to go and buy a football magazine. His sister, he said, had randomly gifted him some money. Maybe, since it had been his birthday recently: he’s now eleven years old, Maa Shaa Allah .
So we went to Waitrose. And: on the way there, we’d seen ع’s aforementioned teacher, driving a BMW. We also saw a nice electric-blue McLaren parked up on the side of the road, and a man near it. Maybe: an influencer? Or, company car? ع said that he’s seen the same man with a Lambo or something, before.
And ع’s favourite cars are the big ones: Range Rovers, G-Wagens. I think his older sister loves the same sort of car. But me: I love Ferraris and McLarens. The sleek, smooth, and speedy ones. My brother likes Jaguars.
My cousin and his wife love the Nissan GT-R. So that’s what he’d hired for their wedding (Walīmah).
And: my aunt, I think, really loves BMW sports cars. And now she finally has one of her own, AlHamduli Llah .
At Waitrose, we couldn’t find the kind of football magazine that ع had been looking for. He wanted one with ‘Topps’ cards with it, and not ‘Panini’ ones. So we asked someone. Neither ع nor I wanted to approach someone working there to ask them. Both of us, I think, are at once, quite ‘social’ and also the opposite.
And when I tried to explain to the man that we’re looking for Topps cards, and not Panini ones… I don’t think he understood. Anyway.
Next on the agenda: some ice-cream. But: turns out that on this specific (hot) day, the freezer section had stopped working or something. So nothing from there had been being sold. So no football magazine, no ice-cream. But, Khayr. Everything happens for a reason. Plus: we saw ع’s teacher م again. At Waitrose.
And then: to pick up my brother and speak to ش, my aunt’s friend who is also a Teaching Assistant. Finding out that my brother’s little friend ز is ش’s son.
And: seeing ش cycle away, with ز cycling near her. ش had been cycling in her Abaya. And: comfortably. Which: I think I need to learn how to do, because the number of Abayas that are no longer, for me, because they’d gotten caught in my bike’s chains, and have either had to be pulled out, or cut off...
I’m really glad that we have little brothers, AlHamduli Llah . I think that: they influence/affect us, and that we influence/affect them.
After school today, ع had Fora (i.e. the Bengali term for Qur’an/Islamic class. Otherwise known as ‘Maktab’, or, in Somali, as I’ve learnt: ‘Dugsee’). Our aunt had picked him up, in her BMW.
And my brother and I tried to do a ‘Try Not to Laugh’ challenge with old videos of him. And I burst out laughing after watching the first one: of him with his hood over his face, being himself. Sigh. Spending time with the people we love really is a major blessing, AlHamduli Llah . Fills your head with knowledge about football, footballers, and various YouTubers, at times.
Finally: today I came across a talk that had been delivered by one of my current Arabic teachers, online. About dealing with experiences of depression.
What I found particularly interesting and beneficial from this talk had been: the Shaykh’s description of depression, essentially, as being an ailment of the mind. When the mind is scarred, and requires attention and healing.
And, also: the human being is body, mind, and soul. It might help with experiences of depression: to seek psychological help. And: to try to view life more via… the soul.
Surah Yaaseen also helps with making people feel happier, apparently. To put joy in your heart.
And, for combatting sadness, anxiety and depression… There is this potent Du’a:
And everything is the same.
And: everything changes. Subhaan Allah .