Readers we have come to the end of 2022! I feel like I blinked and just like that the year passed by! Though it’s passed by quick, 2022 has probably been one of my most favourite years. It’s been a year filled with hard work and marked with successes and moments of joy which have meant the world to me.
If I had to pick a word to describe 2022, it would be: busy.
2022 has been so busy for me that in truth, early in the year I hadn’t to the best of my ability given myself the time to reflect nor express gratitude for the blessings I have in my life.
But unusual as this sounds, a few weeks ago God/the Universe sent me a sign. He disturbed everything I was doing to speak to me. As if to say: “Slow down for a minute now Fahmida. I’m going to need you to open your eyes”.
At the time, I was on holiday in Istanbul and that’s when God reminded me of something from such a painful chapter of my life. It caught me so off guard and completely took the wind out of my sails.
I felt nauseous. And readers, you know the lump you get at the back of your throat when you’re going to cry? That happened…and then I started crying.
(I feel sorry for my taxi driver – that guy probably wanted to do a quick drop off and call it a day. Instead he got a teary, nauseous looking, non-Turkish speaking passenger and every possibility that she could, at any moment puke in his car.
I might have been teary but that man was STRESSED. Ah, what a long day 😭).
Fast-forward to about a week later (and no, I didn’t puke in the poor man’s car), when I’ve flown back from Istanbul and am at home reflecting. I sit down and think about the overwhelming feeling I felt in Istanbul.
And I realise that the sign that God sent me – well, that was a wake-up call to all of the beautiful blessings that I have in my life today.
I know that everything that happens in life…and every sign you receive, is part of your fate. That’s because if there are two things that do not exist, they are: luck and coincidence. That’s what I firmly believe.
So whatever it is that I saw in Istanbul – no matter how momentarily – I was meant to see. And it was meant to make me reflect.
What I reaslised was that I’d spent most of the year so busy and preoccupied over certain goals that I want to achieve in the future, that I hadn’t taken time to appreciate the present moment. I hadn’t been as grateful as I should have been, for the present moment – for the answered prayers that I am currently living in.
In Istanbul it hit me all at once and I was overwhelmed with emotion. I was met with a memory from the past. I saw something that made me feel grief for a younger version of Fahmida.
But with that feeling came one of gratitude too – for the present, for where I am now. Because when I saw the sign, I was reminded of where I would be (or rather how deeply unhappy I would be), if God hadn’t helped teach me how to let go…if he hadn’t helped me make space for all the blessings that were about to come my way.
Look at how far you’ve come kid. Look at your growth. Look at all the love in your life. And how kind God has been to you.
In Surah Ad-Duhaa, God says: “Indeed what is to come will be better for you than what has gone by” (93:4).
And sure enough, here God was showing me just that.
I think what I’m trying to say is, sometimes you can be in a chapter of your life where you feel a little stuck. You’re about to make some changes in your life and truthfully, you’re not 100% sure whether things will work out, nor can you be certain of where you’re headed.
As it happens, a few years later, one by one, all of your dreams start coming true. And just then (when you least expect it), God nods at you, sends you a sign even, as if to show you:
‘I’ve got you Fahmida, I always did – Indeed what is to come will be better than what has gone by”.
2022 has been such a beautiful year. When I think of my personal growth, the blessings I’ve received this year and how successful I’ve been, my heart feels so happy.
The sign I saw in Istanbul – that was simply a reminder to me to realise what’s important.
You may be wondering what that is? It’s gratitude readers. What I am realising too is that equally important to practicing gratitude, is giving back.
So after a successful 2022, these are the goals for 2023: we’re working hard, enjoying the blessings, practicing gratitude and giving back.
And Allah? No doubt you’re watching me blog right now. A request for the next time you wish to send me a sign: can it be a gentler sign next time? I am not your strongest soldier – I will simply drop on the floor and collapse. Gentle signs from now on pls x
From a VERY grateful Fahmida x