Everyone in their lives is on their own journey of discovery – of things, people, places and ideas. In trying to make sense of things, some people take longer than others. Nobody should be chastised for not ‘keeping up’ with their peers or for not seeing something that may appear glaringly obvious to another person. After all, we all come with our own innate abilities. We also have our own subjective biases, wrongly or rightly. Our environment also shapes us and there are so many factors which either skew or clarify our judgement on things. Against that complicated backdrop, we muddle our way through life till we figure out what really matters and what doesn’t.
Like all humans, I have had days when I don’t feel hopeful or positive about a situation and the will to change is not forthcoming. Procrastination hits me hard. However, Alhamdulillah, I can honestly say that those days have gradually become the minority in my life. For the most part, I have ensured that I keep moving and don’t grind to a halt. My renewed zest for life refuses to let me be motionless for long. I see the phase I am in now, as a woman going it alone, as a wonderful gift – an opportunity to seize. I am free to determine my own path. I want to prove to myself that I can and will do some of the things I thought I never could or would when younger.
Death is something I think of frequently even if it is for a fleeting moment during the day. Whilst that may seem a depressing thought or morbid, ironically, it is the very stimulus to motivate me to stop procrastinating and get on with the things I have always challenged myself to do. Alhamdulillah, I do believe there has been progress. I have already started some of my goals. Writing this blog was one of them. On this score, I have surpassed my own expectations. I was not sure if I could remain dedicated to writing a post once a week. Apparently, 70+ weeks later I still have many things that I want to say. I guess Life is the best writing prompt anyone could be given.
I have other goals which are long-term and for which the results are not immediately palpable. Living healthily, in terms of physical exercise and a balanced diet, is one example. I feel blessed that these such ambitions have finally translated into action. Sometimes, it takes a negative experience to put us on track for something bigger and better. For me, it was my divorce. It gave me the impetus to do some soul-searching and draw me out of my comfort zone and to stop making excuses for procrastination. Allah had cleared the whiteboard and was now asking me to write up a new narrative. I could not ignore the opportunity handed to me.
Along the way, I have learnt more about myself in these last five years alone than I have in all the years put together. Emerging from a divorce did not leave me with a choice between ‘sink or swim’. I had to swim. It was not a choice. I had to find my fighting spirit within and I didn’t realise the hidden potential I had lying dormant within. Today, I say I am grateful for the opportunities that my divorce brought my way. That is not to suggest that I was previously living an oppressed life. Alhamdulillah, far from it. However, now as a single person, I have to take sole responsibility for the consequences of my actions. But I am also allowed to take sole credit for when a decision has paid off. Of course, none of this is achievable without Allah. But it is He who gives people the intellect to discern between a wrong and right choice. He has now given me the right to exercise my discretion especially in matters relating to my family and for that I am eternally grateful, Alhamdulillah.
Once upon a time, I would have said, “Procrastination will end tomorrow,” but I now see the irony in that statement. Every day that I am alive I am determined to make it a meaningful day. Whether I memorise a du’a (invocation) or an ayah (verse) from the Quran, meet a friend for a chat or whether I simply go on a long walk and enjoy nature, I resolve to be fully present in the present.
I know the seeds of tomorrow are planted today.