Envious of Each Other’s Struggles and the Place I Need to Be

Daanish through the window

How will they know they are accepted by Allah? When the joy from their blessings and the trouble and despair from their afflictions are the same to them. -- paraphrased from a saying of Rabiah al Basri - a sahabi (companion) of the Prophet Muhammad (saw).The Facebook statuses I am reading today, this Jummah (Friday) are so very real and raw and honest. Several friends who are in Jerusalem and tried to get to Masjid al Aqsa for Friday prayers wrote about how men under the age of 45 were de … [Read more...]

Bismillah and the Road Less Traveled

bismillah

Bismillah-hir-rahman-hir-rahim.In the name of God, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.In the name of the One who is the most charitable, the most helpful, the most mercy-giving, the most generous, compassionate, forgiving, gracious, kindhearted, forbearing, lenient and sympathetic.I’ve been thinking about this phrase, Bismillah, and how Muslims invoke it at the start of any new endeavor, when faced with any big trial, when placing forth any effort, any step and well, anything. We … [Read more...]

Let Our Decisions Be the Right Ones

Daanish in the car

Allah pai bharosa reko. (Place your trust in God.)The mornings feel less hectic now.Don’t get me wrong, they still are hectic, as we rush to the end of the school year. I am urging Hamza to wake and hurry, hurry, hurry through the teeth brushing, clothes changing, socks and shoes wearing and breakfast eating. I still  am frantically urging him and his sister – Come on come on! Let’s go, let’s go, let’s go!Until, in a flurry of arms, legs, backpacks, lunch boxes and extra bags carrying … [Read more...]

Ali Family Autism Truths for Autism Awareness Month – The Last Ten

Daanish and Mama holding hands

The blank screen on my phone stared back at me, waiting for me to write the last Ali Family Autism Truth on the last day of April -- Autism Awareness Month. I was at a blank. How do I sum things up? Is that even possible? Because there is no summation to Lil D's life with autism, or our life with him. It's ongoing, and just because April was ending didn't mean our autism truths were ending. Autism doesn't end like that.The last ten days of truths left me anxious, because there was so much to … [Read more...]

Autism Doesn’t End Like That

A rare moment of holding hands as we leave his school.

So much -- and so little -- can happen in 30 days.The woods that spread out from our house are coming to life, with branches going from winter-bare to being covered in lush green. Spring is finally ushering its way in. I sat on our deck on April 2 – World Autism Day – devastated after a heartbreaking day of shocking news about you, and I watched you play. You swung back and forth on the hammock and jumped with abandon on our trampoline. The silence of our neighborhood was punctured by the hap … [Read more...]

30 Ali Family Autism Truths for Autism Awareness Month – the Second Ten

Daanish_Maymont

When we fast in the holy month of Ramadan, our family has a saying -- the first 10 are easy. You fast with full spiritual joy and intensity, ready to really experience Ramadan. The second ten fasts are the hard ones.  You start to grow weary in body, mind and soul. Keeping up spiritual and faith practices grow hard during the second ten days. And then in the last ten days you feel a renewed exuberance. You are ready to recommit to your Ramadan goals, to push through to the end.The second set … [Read more...]

30 Ali Family Autism Truths for Autism Awareness Month – The First 10

Daanish_park

April is Autism Awareness Month. And as much as individuals with autism and those in the autism community feel that we are waaaaaaay beyond awareness and must be focused on action, I've come to realize in my nearly three years of chronicling our autistic son's (and our family's) life -- there is still so much people don't know or understand. For those who do not directly know someone with autism, they are still so unaware.Unaware about what it means to be autistic, what sorts of challenges … [Read more...]


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