Vote Your Love

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“You know, you can talk to me in Bangla if it makes you more comfortable,” I said quietly. I could sense my passenger was struggling, words stumbling from his tongue.“Oh that’s right,” he responded, slightly surprised. “I’ve been in the US a year, and I never can find people to speak in Bangla with.”“I don’t speak it bhalou, but I can understand it ikhthu ikhthu,” I jokingly said in Banglish.It was an unusually warm early October night in Los Angeles, and I was driving on the yellow l … [Read more...]

Love Comes Later

after-ceremony

We had been married just over 24 hours and had just finished dhuhr prayer when a friend of the family, my mother-in-law’s dearest friend, kneeled in front of us and grasped our hands in hers, with a look of tenderness and concern.“Now I need to tell y’all something. This right here, right now? You think this is the love but I have to tell you, this isn’t the love.”We looked at each other, eyebrows raised, knowing smiles on our lips, the wisdom of those in their early twenties (which is to … [Read more...]

Tomorrow’s Joy

huda

The division of labor in our household is wildly disproportionate whenever we are trying to get out the door. I get everything and everyone ready. If we're traveling, I pack. Picnics, I pack. Dinner invitations, I pick out everyone's clothes and prepare a dish to share. Birthday parties, I buy the gift and wrap it. And, maybe I'll throw in a load of laundry, take out the trash, and clean the kitchen. My husband, Hadi, has his list, too: He gets himself ready and loads up the car if I haven't … [Read more...]

Asian Parents React to “I Love You”

What would happen if you said "I love you" to your parents? These people did and the reactions are beautiful and heartwarming.Filmmaker Steven Lim is calling for you to video your parents reacting to hearing the words come from you. Post your videos using the hashtag #iloveyouchallenge. … [Read more...]

The Heart’s Prosthesis

You were different.I don’t know if I ever told you that, but there it is. For you, I broke every self-imposed rule I’d ever created. They say the best kind of love is the one you never see coming, the kind that sneaks up on you so slowly that by the time you feel its presence, it has already burrowed deep inside the caverns of your heart that you didn’t even know existed.You were a surprise, a calamity that happened both slowly and all at once. You were different because you had enough fl … [Read more...]

Turn to Your Friends

Sanem and I took turns crossing the street to each other's townhomes for afternoon tea, at least once a week, for seven years. In our nearly identical kitchens, we put out similar spreads, a smaller tea pot steamed above a larger tea pot, honey-colored tea served in little glass cups, warm bread, an assortment of cheeses and jams, and cookies for our kids. Sanem was from Turkey, my family was from Iraq, and our tea rituals mirrored one another. While our children played in the upstairs bedrooms, … [Read more...]

Memoirs of the Beautiful Widow

And just like that, I remember it all.At the age of 25, after 6.5 years of marriage, my best friend died with my hand in his. Cancer transported his vitality too quickly into a realm better than life, facilitated by a roomful of angels whose countenances I couldn’t see, but whose warm wings and nur soothed my sore, bloodshot eyes.He used to call me his “heat seeker,” borrowed from a Talib Kweli Reflection Eternal verse. Ha! Funny. I was anemic, occasionally. I’m cooler blooded anyways … [Read more...]

Show Me Love

Eds. Note: We’re featuring the stories and perspectives of Muslim youth between the ages of 18-25 this month! Tune in on Twitter to join the #MYRising conversations and check out our sister sites Muslimah Montage, Coming of Faith and Muslim ARC for more #MYRising features.At the age of 24, I have yet to hear my parents utter the words, “I love you” to me, or to each other despite 34 years of marriage.Growing up, I always felt like I did not know what love was because, unlike my American friends, … [Read more...]

Humans of the World

Humans of New York, one of our favorite photoblogs, was started in November 2010 by photographer Brando Stanton. What started as an effort to take candid portraits on the streets of New York - accompanied by short & intimate interviews with every day people - has turned into a global phenomena. Brandon is currently on 50 day, international trip in partnership with the United Nations, in an effort to gather portraits & stories and raise awareness for the Millennium Development Goals- so … [Read more...]

Heavy Moans, Achy Joints

Eds. Note: We’re featuring the stories and perspectives of Muslim youth between the ages of 18-25 this month. Tune in on Twitter to join the #MuslimYouthRising conversations and check out our sister sites Muslimah Montage, Coming of Faith and Muslim ARC for more #MYRising features.“If it turns out that I have an incurable disease or I’m dying, will you still love me?”Our bodies held on to each other while Twelve-to-Six whispered, “Of course.”That day we didn’t go to our usual spot in Prospect Par … [Read more...]


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