To perceive is to suffer – Aristotle

I remember growing up and struggling to find a balance between seeing the world burning and the news of that personally affecting me. I’m an empath, always have been and most probably always will be; with that comes feeling other people’s energy and emotions deeply… experiencing it like them. If you’re going through it, WE are going through it togethaaaaa, to put it simply. I live through intuition, if it feels right I do it, if it doesn’t, good luck convincing me.

Growing up, before I had thought that medicine was the path for me, (oh how un-self-aware one can be) I wanted to be a journalist but more in the realm of “reporting live from the FRONTLINES”. Something about moving from Denmark to Malawi as a kid set off this activist in me, which looking back would have happened eventually because the only time my mum was ever called to pick me up from kindergarten early was because I had beat this kid up (I think I scratched him or bit him) and when I was asked why, I explained that it was because he was bullying someone else and my aunt had shown me what to do next time that happens. I have always been a voice for the underdog. However somewhere between constantly having stimuli hitting me from graphic images on the news or from my environment and not realising how it all affected me, I just started becoming really overwhelmed and hating the world. The epitome of pessimism and cynicism was me (it’s really not a good look for a child).

So I stopped watching the news or following it for most of last year (until I decided I was going back to school and I had to play catch up). I just vanished off social media, I wasn’t talking to people or leaving the house much…I just needed me time, which I never understood the importance of, that will be a topic for another time, but it is needed…go treat yourself! I still don’t watch the news but I follow it and read it, which keeps me from being an absolute emotional wreck. However I thought I had it under wraps until this past month, where something just didn’t feel right.

Anyone who knows me well enough will know that I love music to the point that I can guess what producers worked on an album by ear (or at least I used to be but you know age and all), but my close friends will also tell you that if anything music related goes viral I will just not listen to it. I HATE having to feel the pressure of OMG have you heard Beyoncé’s new album…DISCLAIMER: No I have not because (1) I have real life priorities. My plan was to get back from my exam yesterday, sit down and listen to and watch the album and then write a piece on it for some site. I just couldn’t do it and it kept bugging me as to why. 

It hit me…

I really do not give a f**k (that isn’t to say that I’m not a fan but that the oversaturation kills it). In the past month I have heard of my people’s bodies being found in Egypt without organs, nearly 200 of them drowned in the Mediterranean not to mention ISIS taking responsibility for their first attack in Somalia. We aren’t the only ones that suffer tragedy but we are among the ones that no one ever mourns for. We are among the ones that the world has become desensitised to hearing about. That is the world we live in; where I can hear about a single person dying for weeks on end and yet never hear the names of the everyday people who die in the hundreds and thousands as a result of actions carried out by sick minded people. I can’t even blame the the world anymore because there has been apathy within me because I have taught myself to feel less when I naturally feel more. I have gone against what I always promised myself that I would do and that is to speak truth no matter how uncomfortable it is for people to hear it. Bite your tongue, and look down… I think not!

I’m tired of how I’m part of a generation that will speak of finding themselves to fit the ‘deep/Rumi’ façade but when it comes to having real conversations about what is really going on in society, the complexities of human nature or lord forbid… our feelings, that isn’t as popular (but wasting energy on playing games is the IT thing… go on with your bad self 🙄). We don’t think for ourselves and our opinions are uninformed. I was just at lunch some weeks back and a girl that I had just met that afternoon comes out with “Qali it is inspiring to see a Muslim woman be so open-minded, educated and un-oppressed”. I really didn’t understand…I mean does any part of me look oppressed? It can’t be my hijab…oh yeah, I forgot that I walk around with chains around my ankles and a muzzle on my mouth.

I get it, it’s easy to just scrape by and do the bare minimum and get your one-sided information from wherever… It’s more comfortable to flow with the current than to go against it. However to shut off what you feel and to educate yourself is one of the greatest acts of disservice we can afford ourselves. It’s scary to see what is happening in the world but once you shuffle through all of the headlines and the trigerring images, you get to the beauty of struggle; you witness and hear the stories of incredible people who are so resilient, embody such strength and humanity that you get some hope back (faith in humanity restored)

That is why I take photos, that is how I learnt to balance the empath in me. I try channel and understand the beauty in the world and its people because we’re not here to be miserable, wallowing in low self-esteem and never being passionate about anything or anyone. There is always good where there is bad.

Being cool has never been my thing, I always wander in my own Neverland and form my own path because no change happened with people who were the same as everyone else. I’ve never felt like I fitted in but I never felt like I needed to either. I feel deeply and most of the time people don’t get it and it drives my mother up the wall…Qaali there is nothing like saving the world, save yourself. What did I tell you guys in the beginning about my intuition when something feels wrong?… Who you trying to convince?.

I feel like many of us just go by everyday and not reflect on what this life is. What do you stand for? And if you don’t stand for anything then why are you here…what is your purpose? If you’ve read this far, I commend you on following my jumbled thoughts. I hope this finds you well in the black hole that is the Internet, this is another piece on #beingqaali.

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