Speaking My Language

Sabina

“Turn me into droplets of rain so I sprinkle upon your pretty face,
Then coat me with dreariness as I wander alone…” - Qarar  On the two-hour drive to my parents’ home, I crooned along to one of my favorite Pashto songs, Qarar. I felt the sweetness of the words fill me: the longing and the love of a man for his lover.Turning to my husband as he drove, I swung my hands dramatically towards him, continuing to sing along. He smiled and switched lanes. After the song ended, I sighed … [Read more...]

Engagement Party Vanilla Cupcakes + Big News + My Love Life

Nazia

Eds. Note: Please welcome our newest columnist, London-based Nazia, who will be sharing her food column Your Sunny Side Up the third Thursday of every month!It was just a few short months ago we were dancing at her engagement party, stuffing our faces with these cupcakes, and later indulging in a midnight feast of pizza and cookie dough (what wedding diet?). Fast forward a few weeks and we’re walking her down the aisle dressed in white to start the next chapter of her life. And now my beaut … [Read more...]

Choosing Polygyny

zs

“If I had another wife, she’d have the house clean and a fancy dinner ready every time I came home,” he said, only half-joking and not for the first time. “Maybe I should just marry another woman. A proper Arab wife.”I looked up at him. “Maybe you should.”That night, I sent a message to several women I knew, asking them to find a second wife for my husband. And then I lay in bed and imagined what this woman would be like, the woman who would make my husband happy, who would be everything … [Read more...]

Rebels by Accident

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Deonna Kelli Sayed interviews writer Patricia Dunn, author of the YA novel, Rebels by Accident,  in this episode of Love, Inshallah's author interview podcast.(Track listing: "Ala Warag il Ful" and "Drum Solo" by Zikrayat. Music in this podcast is found at Free Music Archive: Middle East.)Sixteen year old Egyptian-American Mariam just wants the normal teenage American high school experiences. After she is busted at a party with her best friend, Deanna -- a party the police break up … [Read more...]

If God gives me the privilege of giving birth to a daughter

kiahq

Eds. Note: We are pleased to welcome our newest columnist, Key Ballah! Catch her column - Brown Girl Dreaming - the second Wednesday of every month. You are a woman every part of you reaches toward that identity, but you hesitate, cutting your tongue on the way that it sounds. Because your mother is a woman and the word rests against her so gently. Her hips are full, her mouth is wide, the word “woman” just seems to embrace her. But you feel it hanging off of you, like a  … [Read more...]

Vote Your Love

image

“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...]


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