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...]

Chasing Joy

chasejoy

I came across an essay called, “Joy,” from writer Zadie Smith. This was a timely find as I woke up to 2015 with this motto: chase joy! Smith starts the essay highlighting the differences between pleasure and joy, which I agree requires necessary distinction. She suggests that pleasure is comprised of small things. I’ve spent the past two years chasing various sorts of pleasures, some as banal as a good cup of coffee. Other pleasures I’ve sought are better suited for a different sort of essay. … [Read more...]

The View From Here

huda

In seventeen years of marriage, my husband and I have lived in one foreign country and three different states. At each of these locations, we've changed our homes at least twice, shrinking and expanding from a tiny apartment to a bigger apartment, from a smaller duplex to a larger high-rise, from a modest townhome to single-family home. And, within each of these homes, we've been different people and a different couple.Our first apartment was a one-bedroom in Santa Clara, California with … [Read more...]

An Accidental Jihad

accidental-jihad

Writer Krista Bremer met Ismail fifteen years ago on a North Carolina running trail. A romantic relationship developed through an unexpected pregnancy, eventual marriage, and subsequent spiritual growth. Krista's recent memoir, My Accidental Jihad, details her jump into the deep space of marriage and an unexpected faith journey.Deonna Kelli Sayed speaks with Krista and Ismail  -- "Ish" for short -- about the bicultural nature of all marriages, Krista's writing process, and her evolving spiri … [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...]

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...]

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...]

Father of the Bride

On my wedding day, my father won’t walk me down the steps to my husband. He won’t lift my blusher and give me a kiss on the forehead. He won’t have a twinkle of tears in his eyes. He won’t take my hand and place it in my fiancé’s, and then take a step back as I begin a new journey with another man by my side.He won’t do any of this, because he won’t be there.It’s not because my father has a terminal illness, or because he passed away. It’s more painful than that. My father has chosen to l … [Read more...]


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