5.29.2017

my daughter and i - life one day at a time

dalya was born on the 24th of February. It's been three months of getting to know her and she getting used to us. I cried for four weeks straight; confused, distraught and unsure if I could be a mother and be sane...the placenta capsules, therapy sessions, good friends and an amazing husband pulled me through. Am I out of the woods yet? Don't think so...i go through bouts of doubt, fear and anxiety every day. Her continuous growth both mentally and physically is awesome and wonderful to witness. That is what motivates me to stay in the game and be the best I can be each day.
One day at a time.


12.31.2016

being pregnant at 41

it has not been an easy ride believe me. i had a termination earlier this year due to major heart defects in the fetus. it was not genetic, it was luck, racked it up to the innumerable experiences life throws at us. i went to my acupuncturist as usual and he helped me get my regularity back. a  month after my termination i was pregnant again. what i believe helped get me to where i am is a healthy lifestyle, exercising regularly and being grateful.  

at 31 weeks, with only a single digit countdown i look back and know that  the severe constipation, the constant nausea (even now), the sudden redness of eyes, the acne in spots i have never known to see acne, the forgetfulness that leads to awkwardness, the pain of having a baby sleep on your bladder, the aversions to your favorite dishes, the bloat, being anemic and fatigued....it is all physical and temporary. i danced at my office christmas party and the baby moved off my bladder. i take disgusting magnesium powder every morning to  handle constipation. i  have stopped  judging myself for the forgetfulness that boggles my mind as to how words could just be erased from my mental vault. the yoga and fitness keeps my bloat at a very manageable level. i talk to my succulents and garden to discover beauty. laughing with Stu relaxes me and watching the baby move side to side with knees and elbows poking out only triggers gratitude. 

during this time mum was diagnosed with stage one cancer in the esophagus. she felt uncomfortable for two weeks and got it checked out.  she caught it early. major surgery, two weeks in  the hospital, she is able to talk, walk and read in bed. her body awareness and will to keep going are only a few things i intend to teach my daughter. at 41 we are bound to have our elders fall ill and have our friends have much older kids than mine. 

plug on we shall. a woman who lives in harmony with herself and takes care of herself can get pregnant. after 40. i have two friends who were my age who did. we live healthier lives and live longer than our grandparents. it is a different era. 

5.08.2016

falling in love with New Zealand all over again

back in 2004 when i travelled the South Island i thought to myself, 'i will be back and maybe one day i will live here.' seven years later i met my kiwi husband in Istanbul and moved to Australia. we decided to visit family in Picton for a long weekend and leaving was tough. the pristine views, the crisp air, uninterrupted landscape and the warm sweet happy people, we thought some day we will live here. the dream was not my own any longer.

we  flew to Christchurch and drove to Picton via Hamner Springs. Christchurch is going through a major transformation and we just had to work around the traffic management which drove google maps nuts. the kiwi humour did not go unnoticed. traffic blocks in the form of sheep made me laugh. Hamner Springs was gorgeous with its foggy hills and tightly knit community. at Picton we took our uncle's sailing boat to the Marlborough Sounds. i said i wanted to see dolphins and no kidding a few minutes later 20 some dolphins showed up puffing through their blowholes. next we see penguins swimming. we had dinner at The Bay of Many Coves and when walking back to the boat met up with a seal swimming under the pier. the wonders were endless. watching the stars and the milky way on the way back was mesmerising.





10.29.2015

hello 40!

it has been a full go go go kind of year as i edged towards my 40th. we moved to a slightly bigger house, my job took on more responsibilities, made new friends and managed to take a four week break. it had been two years since our last vacation and Stu’s idea to split it into two was magnificent. we visited family and friends in Turkey for two weeks and ended it with a week in Thailand on Railei beach. Railei beach is divinely serene. for days we watched squirrels jump from palm tree to tree. we woke up to the sound of gibbon monkeys singing their call :)


being a yoga instructor for years and being connected to my body i was surprised about how much time it took for me to relax during our holiday. just allowing my mind to rest, allowing myself to nap whenever I felt like it, allowing myself to float and not feel the self-pressure of ‘tread to burn calories’ kind of self-talk was absolutely liberating. it was week three when my self-talk changed to ‘relax and just be’. i read books like ‘Memoirs of an imaginary friend’, ‘A street cat named Bob’ which made me cry from wonder and ‘Post Office’ a hilarious book by Charles Bukowski. my 40th was quiet with Stu- a Thai dinner on the back deck under gorgeous trees with the sound of waves in the distance.


i think my 40s are going to be a different kind of intensity. it will be about being kind and being truthful to myself. i do both but not enough i think, often i was mixing up the two and my path was getting fuzzy. i was softening truths to hurt less- myself and others, and sometimes it is simpler to just speak the truth and have a good chat. 

1.04.2015

expressing love through mail

we received the sweetest christmas card from Stu's nephew a few days ago.  Isaac had designed it himself. i was so  moved upon receiving it that i had a moment of enlightenment. the feeling i had was exactly why i wrote postcards and cards all year. the end of the year postcards that Stu and i wrote was my highlight each time. 

i cannot remember when i first wrote a card and to whom but i reckon it was the mandatory new year's cards that was sent to relatives in Turkey when we were living in Pakistan. i must have been six i think, my earliest memory of cursive concentrated script to grandmother, aunts and uncles was around that time. and we always received something in return. my father grilled us to make sure we had done our part in keeping in touch and wishing everyone well. i lived apart from loved ones back then and i still do. and this was the only efficient way i knew how to send and show my love.

since Stu and i have been together we have produced a postcard every year. it started with our wedding ceremony cards. the fact that we designed them together and the ones that followed were effortless just made me happier. friends who received it in different corners of the world were happy as well i am sure..

there are days i think that if i were to disappear from the face of the earth right now what would i have impacted? and i always feel sending love through the sky to someone's front door is the best way i know how to say i miss and love them.



10.19.2014

Hot Seat audition

i did not watch television between 1995- 2012. it was unnecessary. i watched a few popular shows with friends in their homes, Seinfeld on  video back in the day and sometimes did an Avatar marathon on my computer. it was not until Darwin and slow living that got me started on watching television seriously. i developed new habits like answering quizzes with Stu on Saturday mornings and answering more questions on quiz shows after work to wind down. i started liking what i saw on Hot Seat.

people who came on Hot Seat were normal ordinary folks. some walked away not knowing what hit them after just answering what they did not even know. the unpredictability of it thrilled me. each time someone won i cried. i was really happy for them. and this past April after we moved to Melbourne, i decided to apply online.

just a few weeks i received an email saying i was invited to the audition. it was the week of the moon eclipse as well. my heart beat fast for a good three hours. the producers were hilarious. they set the expectations for sure. they said, 'when you walk away from here forget about us; we may call you in two weeks or in two years or never, just never call us.' they said we were chosen out 25,000 people.

cool. 200 some people packed into an auditorium, 30 questions asked Hot Seat style, an hour later we had been separated from the ones who did not get great scores. i was in a group of 40, we had a minute to talk about ourselves in front of the camera and leave. that was it. i watched everyone in the room be funny, sweet, humble, odd and interesting. there was one lady who talked about her pap smear. that was eye opening. there was two people who were going to Everest base camp. i looked it up, they were not in the avalanche thank goodness. there were older folks with really "wow" lives. i waited and waited. there were only two casting directors and me left in the room when i was called. i was still nervous. i had made notes in my paper of story options i could use and i  had to give the paper away (!) because they wanted my score sheet. i wasn't called because i hadn't given them my score sheet :/ i  was in the restroom at the time they gave instructions.

anyway with a light on my face, lens directed at me and two pairs of eyes watching i told them a story of my time at camp. when i gave therapy to troubled kids in a wilderness therapy program. a tiny kid half my size attacked another girl and when i went to restrain her she bit me. and since then when i watch vampire movies i always have something at the back of my mind that whispers 'i will never be bit again!'

the casting director was not expecting that. i  heard a guffaw. and i left. yup that was it. it was the best Melbourne 'human experience' thus far. i put the kookaburras, koalas and red kangaroos into my 'mind blown non-human experience'. Hot Seat audition was mega fun and different. since it was the eclipse i hope i get news in a month or in a year as that is how eclipses work. otherwise i will never forget it either way.

9.06.2014

let it go by biking around Albert Park and watching butterflies

biking in a city is daunting so we started small. cruising around the streets of South Melbourne and Albert Park is the best way to spend a sunny spring morning. we started at the Chinese temple on Raglan street, through gorgeous trees and homes of Albert Park and stopped for a coffee at the beach. people were walking with their pups and bubs. i saw a guy in the water and could not believe it. a yummy coffee whilst sitting near at the harbor was divine. we continued towards the quaint shops and cafes in Albert Park. i had a chat with a fellow vintage bike owner whose bike was bright yellow. she loved my pink bike. we connected talking about how tough it is  to get a cute basket for our bikes.

i haven't felt this free in months. work has been intense. we have had guests over in our new loft bed! more pictures of  the loft bed in the next post. with the sun finally out and the butterflies fluttering in our garden i am feeling like Melbourne is ready to be explored. letting go is definitely easier when i bike in the sunshine.