I Look to You, Dear Daughter

| This is the 502nd story of Our Life Logs |  “To realize one’s nature perfectly- That is what each of us is here for. People are afraid of themselves nowadays.” Oscar Wilde.  It was a chilly day in 1972 in Okara, Pakistan, when I came into this world as the youngest daughter in the family after my five siblings. As the baby of the family, … Continue reading I Look to You, Dear Daughter

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The Girl Who Fought Her Own Battle

| This is the 496th story of Our Life Logs | December 20, 2006. I was 13 years old. The door flung open. Our one-room home felt like a locked cage. I remember the fear in my mother’s eyes and the way my brother’s breath shortened. I remember the pounding of my heart. It was the first night my father came home drunk.  My family and I lived in Karachi, Pakistan, in a very small shelter. I don’t call it … Continue reading The Girl Who Fought Her Own Battle

She Will Not Live This Way

| This is the 491st story of Our Life Logs | Growing up, I saw thousands of faces in my town. I was born in Kasur, Punjab, in Pakistan. Kasur is a very small city famous for the shrine of Baba Bulleh Shah. Thousands of believers come there to visit the shrine and say their prayers. Some of these travelers have hopeful eyes, like bright windows on … Continue reading She Will Not Live This Way

I Am Not Weak

| This is the 474th story of Our Life Logs | I’ve often wondered what drove me to have those wicked thoughts of wanting to commit suicide. Did I, in fact, have a mental illness? Was I a coward? Was I really being selfish? Eventually, I answered those questions. Here’s how. I was born in Washington, DC in 1975. The youngest of three to parents that were … Continue reading I Am Not Weak

To Return to Myself

| This is the 461st story of Our Life Logs | As a little girl born in 2001, I didn’t grow up knowing anything but my family’s small farm in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the two horses we had and the beef cattle. I can still remember how it felt like to wake up to animal noises, to play in the creek, my feet all muddy and wet. I … Continue reading To Return to Myself

The Anatomy of a Warrior

| This is the 460th story of Our Life Logs | Warriors carry an extra appendage while preparing for combat. They choose what will heighten their power when they meet adversity. They master the appendage. They set out to conquer. For me, that extra appendage is, was, and will always be my power wheelchair. My wheels are a chariot to freedom rather than a temporary crutch to … Continue reading The Anatomy of a Warrior

At the Start of My Journey

| This is the 448th story of Our Life Logs | Growing up in Ozone Park in the New York borough of Queens in the 1980s was not easy for me. My childhood was not sweet, to say the least. Instead of love and security, it was filled with mockery and humiliation. I mean, my parents gave us kids—my twin sister, older brother, and me—basic things like … Continue reading At the Start of My Journey

Whispers of the Heart

| This is the 447th story of Our Life Logs | My story began before I was even born, when the traditional values of the Pakistani culture sunk into the hearts and minds of my parents—separately, of course. They didn’t get married until sometime in the 1970s. But each grew up in Pakistan, and each moved to London in the 60s, and each was suited to one … Continue reading Whispers of the Heart

A Light at the End of the Tunnel

| This is the 445th story of Our Life Logs | I was born in 1998, in Lagos, Nigeria, a sparsely over-populated city with a mix of lifestyles and cultures. It was like the America of Nigeria, hence the popular saying, “No one in Lagos is from Lagos.” In my early childhood, we lived in a ghetto in Lagos called Okokomaiko, full of rain-washed fading walls and … Continue reading A Light at the End of the Tunnel