City of Boston in the background of the photo

City of Boston in the background of the photo

Spectacle Island2


I cannot tell you how relieving it is.  To be anchored

Rooted firmly in faith.

Just a few years ago I was a kite at the mercy of the wind of this world.

Every horrible disaster or humanitarian crisis or war would destroy my faith in this world.

That’s because my faith was in this world.

Not to say I had given up on humanity.

I have now anchored myself to that “rope that will never break”.


When I walk through this life “as a stranger”.

Devoted to kindness, not because I want them to like me, but because I desire a heavier weight in my scale on the Day of Judgment.

Because I hope to be “shaded under His shade” when there is no other.

Because I pray to be among those “70,000 who will enter without reckoning”.

In the turmoil that exists in the world today…to such a degree that can break my heart…

I am grateful for the island of peace that is my Salah rug.  For my warm bed, my Habibi, my sweet little children, the food on my table and the roof over my head.  I am grateful for all the provision He has written for me and sent down with an angel to my mother’s womb when I was 4 months in-utero.

I pray for all the good that You have decreed for me to befall me, and all the evil that You have decreed to be erased, Ameen.

I pray that those suffering are given some relief in this life, even if it is just a warm piece of bread, a blanket and a smile.

I pray for that relief.

I pray that what You hold for them in their hereafter is so great, so amazing to behold…my humble words stumble at describing it…I pray that those suffering get to behold those things in the hereafter, that the human imagination has no comprehension of.  I pray you give those suffering the highest ranks of Jennah and that they will never remember a day of their suffering on this earth.  I pray this even though I know You have already promised this.  I know You’re the most merciful.

And I am so grateful to You for this anchor that You have given me, had I never found it I would still be drifting alone and miserable in this world.  With no compass to guide me and no island of peace to go to when the hurricane strikes.  My raft was weak, and I never would have survived had You not found me, then taken me to the shore.

Thank You.  I am Forever Grateful.  Alhumdulilah.

Written 3/19/15

Dedicated to all of the struggling Refugees all over the world.  May Allah aid and preserve them, Ameen.

Spectacle Island  Wellfleet Bay 3 Wellfleet BayWellfleet Bay2   Wellfleet Bay 4Wellfleet BeachcombersKids Castle IslandKid Castle Island

In memory of my Grandfather: Heinz Najman 11/19/1929 – 8/10/2009

Cousin Shenanigans Family Shot Opas Bench Opas Swing Opas Turkeys Family Man

Written 8/12/2009 on the way to our beloved Opa’s funeral.  I was thinking about Opa as the date that his soul left the earth approaches.  I picked up my journal and I found this piece.  I thought I would share it for my family in lieu of being able to attend his memorial service.  I love you all.  Lets continue to keep his legacy alive, always gather together whenever we all can, and never ever cut our ties.

Bismillah.  (In the name of God).

My Opa was good with his hands, he could build anything.  His mischievous, teasing mentality was a constant within our family.  Whether it was a water fight with Oma in the car-(while driving no less!)  Or an entire can of Japanese beetles dumped on my brothers head.  Or even the way he would complain one minute about “wasting away” from the diet Oma put him on and then the next minute he would suggest that it was “Sean” who was ready for dessert…not him.

His house was truly an example of his craftsmanship.  As children we all were passengers on his tractor, his gardener helpers, chicken feeders, explorers of his back yard.  We would be allowed to use his binoculars to watch the animals. Opa even had a special relationship with the animals.  His Chickens, Turkeys, Turkens, Pigs…and the not so domestic ones, perhaps the most memorable…the squirrels.  Ohhh there was nothing that got him more flustered then the squirrels that dared to eat from his beloved bird feeders.  An ongoing battle, he would rig those feeders with whatever he could to keep the squirrels out.  He would buy the newest “squirrel proof” feeder-none of which were ever up to his standards.  So he would make modifications with chicken wire, sheet metal, and plexi-glass.  Until finally, those squirrel catapult feeders were invented.  The squirrel would get onto the feeder, then to his delight, the creature would be launched into the air.  At this sight, his laughter was contagious.

It really was the littlest things that gave him the most joy, and he passed that down to all of us.  The most important thing to him was and always will be; family.  A true craftsman, that molded us all into what we are today.  Although his soul is no longer with us on this earth, the spirit he instilled in us will always be present.  Whether it be the contagious laughter he passed down to Uncle Jeff, or the ingenuity he taught my brother, or the stubborn stick-to-it-tiveness that he has instilled in all of us.

Thank you Opa, for all that you did for us, and for all the struggle that you went through in your young life in order to survive and create this legacy with your beautiful and equally amazing wife Oma.

Trust. Believe. Be Fearless.

088 Bismillah ar Rahman ar Raheem. As my sweetest Umi always reminds me, quoting our late beloved Granddaddy: “Nothing beats a failure but a try.” Such a true statement, as terrifying as it may be to stand on that brink of opportunity knowing that you could epically fail.  At the same time you could succeed beyond your wildest imaginings.  Focus, dream big, visualize your success, have faith, and take all the necessary action in order to make your dream come true.  Inshaa Allah.


Alone and dark. Twisting gut Writhing in my bed of insomnia. As the Ruby tipped trees lose their brilliant emerald glow, my mood fades… My soul is hungry for the sweetness of Emman, For my kushoo. the tide is running low. Self-doubt and negativity laps the shore. These days I look longingly out the window but can’t bring myself to want to move from the safety of my bed. As the sun sets on summer, I let my flickering light dwindle.


As the knife tight in my gut becomes unbearable, The air of Self-loathing suffocates everything I have left in me to fight it back… I can feel the clock ticking.


The child within is tired and ready to give up.

I lift my babies’ face and hold it close to my own.

I kiss her forehead and whisper that it’s going to be ok.

O’ my sweet inner child of hopes and aspirations.

I have let you become bogged down by the world.

By those nagging thoughts that tell you,

“You will Never have what it takes in this life to be successful.”

“Your stupid and weak!”

“There is so much evil here, it’s too much to witness.”

So you cry for them, as you cry for yourself too.

Trusting and believing in God’s Plan for everyone in your heart.


My sweet child whose dreams are so big.

Why did I ever let you believe that to be true?

That “You’re not Good Enough”.

There was a time you could stand on the top of that mountain, shouting out:

“Nothing can stop me!!”

You can climb up there again, look out from that breathtaking view.

You see that dream over there?

The one far in the distance,

Appears insurmountable.

That my dear, is YOUR dream.

You prayed for it.

You sat up long nights praying,

wondering how you would ever get there.

And now you’re this close…and your going to give up?!

Do not ever think you cannot make it.

We did all the hard work; passed over the boulders we thought would never end.

In the distance we dreamed about coming here.

This very place.

We looked up at this twinkling rock in the distance, and longed to reach it.

Our legs were weary but we trudged on.

And now when you see your final accent, before your eyes…this is where you want to turn around?

We have come so far.

So hush up those fears.

Trudge on.

Know that your destiny is sealed.

“The Pen has been Lifted

The Ink is Dry”.


Go forth and believe you can do it. Know that you would not be here if you couldn’t. HE doesn’t work like that. When you meet Your Maker, don’t you want to be able to thank him for the “rope” He “cast down” to you? Or do you want to stand before him, Hanging your head in shame, because you squandered that precious gift of a rope? Go forth, because Your Maker believes in you, He cast that dream in your heart, high up on that mountain. The climb is tiring, and your load cumbersome, but it was written for you. It’s no one “else’s Burden to Bear”.

So be grateful and climb on, you know you can do it.

If He believes in you

Why       don’t      YOU?








Dua for the Oppressed



Ya Rabb (My Lord), Ya Al-Mu’Min (The Giver of Peace), Ya Al-Malik (The Sovereign), Ya Al-Rahim (The Merciful), Ya Al-Darr (The Afflictor), Ya Al-Muhaymin (The Protector)…

Ya Allah who knows the best of all his names, please help them. Ya Al-Mu’Min if they can not have peace on this earth then grant them peace in their hearts on the battlefield and grant them the loftiest of peace in the hereafter. Ya Allah Al- Aziz (The Almighty), Ya Allah Al-Mu’izz (The Honourer), Honor them with the highest of Honors. Ya Al-Adl (The Just), bring justice to the oppressed. Send them thousands of angels to help them, and send those who fear none but you. Ya Al-Halim (The All-Clement), pardon our mistakes and disobedience to you for you are Al-Tawwab The Acceptor of Repentance). Ya Al- Hafiz (The Guardian), please guide those oppressors, soften their hearts to Islam and Ya Al-Wakil (The Trustee), if guidance is not written for them, then protect us Al-Waliyy (The protector) in every way from them.   Give those suffering, strength, patience, and jennah for this trial is great. If they die let it be with li illiah hi il lallah on their lips. Ameen.



I simply can not look at another image of a babies blown off limbs or another video of young boys, women, men and children being beaten to death. I can not view another picture of the looming smoke over a destroyed Muslim country. My heart aches and my tears run, I feel sick to my stomach. But sometimes we need those images to wake us up.

My power and your power is Dua. It is Ramadan, and if all we are worried about is what we are cooking for Iftar tonight, or what dress we are wearing for Eid then WE ARE THE REASON WHY WE ARE IN THIS STATE. YES. If your heart doesn’t ache for your brothers and sisters all over the world then you need to check the status of your heart. You need to cleanse it and renew it this Ramadan. Make DUA. Make DUA before you break your fast, MAKE DUA in the the last third of the night, MAKE DUA when it rains, MAKE DUA while you are traveling. Make thicker to Allah and keep your tongue wet in remembrance to him and in remembrance of your brothers and sisters who are suffering. I remind myself first and foremost. We are in crisis, and the only way to fix it is to fix ourselves. Allah says “Verily, Allaah will not change the (good) condition of a people as long as they do not change their state (of goodness) themselves (by committing sins and by being ungrateful and disobedient to Allah)” (13:11) It is in our hands, and the hands of Our Lord. Allah has not nor will he ever forsake us. When you are in Sujood and Our Lord has descended to the lowest heaven remember them. For Allah is Maliku’l-Mulk (The Lord of the Kingdom), he is Dhu’l-Jalal, Wa’l-Ikram (The Lord of Majesty and Generosity).

“Oh you who believe! Bow down and prostrate yourselves and serve your Lord, and do good.” (22:77)

I learned this from Al Maghrib Institute today:
Wherever you see dhulm/injustice and oppression in the world today, don’t think Allah will forget it! Whether in this world or in the next, the rights of the people will be upheld!
The Prophet (sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said:
“Dhulm is of three types:
1. A dhulm that Allah will never forgive
2. A dhulm that He will forgive
3. A dhulm that He will never leave alone

As for the dhulm that that He will not forgive, then that is Shirk. Allah said, “Indeed attributing partners to Allah is a terrible injustice.” (al-Luqmān, 13)

As for the dhulm that He will forgive, then that is the injustice from the people themselves towards their Lord.

As for the dhulm that He will never leave alone, then that is when the people oppress one another. It will not be left alone until everyone receives their right and justice from one another.”
(al-Bazzār, Hasan)

May Allah help and guide us all Ameen.


A dua (prayer).

O’ Magnificent creator of All.

All the miracles


All the blessings

That we always take for granted,

Or may never know…


Master of the unseen.

Composer of the heavenly universe.

Designer of the stars.

Artist of the flowers.


I cannot find words to even begin to capture Your Greatness.


I bear witness that You are the only one.

The true God.


I swear by You who fashioned

“the setting places of the stars” . 87:75

You who has dominion to swear by Your creation.

I submit to You alone.


I seek Your forgiveness in any wrong I have ever done.

I fear Your wrath,

And I pray for Your reward


Jennah Ferdose.

I know few of us will make it but I pray that I am one.


I thank You so much.

I am eternally grateful in the most literal sense.

You gave me this light to traverse this darkness in.

All praise is due to You.


I pray when I get to that bridge with hooks and thorns

With the hell fire below,

I pray that my light will be bright in that darkness.

I pray that You have in that Page of mine,

On which the ink is dry…

I pray you have a good end.


If I am faced with calamity on this earth,

I sincerely pray You grant me

Patience and Strength.

Patience and the perseverance to bear whatever You have in store for me.


Ya Allah make our Ummah strong

Ya Allah make our Ummah wake up, make us love one another like we are supposed to.

Ya Allah make our Ummah as one body with no limbs that are suffering.


Thank You for everything.


You have literally given me everything.

Please help me to forgive and love others unconditionally

So I can receive that Love and Forgiveness from You.

Ameen Allahumah Ameen.





I wrote this prayer before I ever thought I would have a blog.  It is from my personal journal.  As The Blessed Month of Ramadan approaches. I thought it pertinent to share.  Please join me in saying Ameen for our Ummah and Ameen for your own souls as well.

I love my brothers and sisters in Islam and I sincerely pray Allah grants us all great reward and benefit from our holy month of fasting.  May he make it easy and beneficial for us all.  Ameen.





The “Winnowing Winds”.

The “Winnowing Winds” are blowing

A change of tide is coming

Spring is bursting…

Rotund buds adorn every tree and bush,

swollen with the desire to unleash what’s inside.


Newborn lambs, on wobbly legs.

Bucking at the teat of their patient mothers.

Curious, strong and frail, all at the same time.

So are we, dependent on Him, yet independent,

with free will, ego and stubbornness.


Wild leeks explode from the ground, through detritus layers of decomposition.

The first spring food granted to us.

Pungent, fresh and bright green.

A flavor reminiscent of Summer,

In the resurrection that is Spring.

“And Allah has sent down rain from the sky and given life thereby to the earth after its lifelessness. Indeed in that is a sign for a people who listen.” 16:65


The Ramps are

Kindred to our own souls.


Thrusting through the earth.

Emancipated, and piquant,

Alluring and naive.

They arrive virtually just after the snow has melted away,

Before the tree leaves unfold to greet the sun.


There is something grounding

About a walk in the woods, with the mud at your feet

The sweet smell of musty leaves and wet earth.


When you find them you will know.

Two bright green leaves

With arms outstretched.

Facing the heavens, as if to greet their maker with gratefulness and awe.


There is something fulfilling

About finding these God given foods.

Wild foraging

When it’s still cold and damp.

When ones human mind cannot conceive that the earth might bring forth food at such an early point of spring.


That’s Al Razzaq.

The All Provider.

Providing for us where our human minds would not think to look.

At the time when we need it most.


As I nourish my body this spring, before the leaves and flowers in all their vibrant splendor arrive,

I cannot help but to notice how nature tells the story of the Quran right before my eyes…

                “By the (winds) that scatter broadcast;

                And those that lift and bear away heavy weights

                And those that flow with ease and gentleness;

                And those that distribute and apportion by


                Verily that which ye are promised is true;

                And verily Judgment and Justice must indeed

                come to pass.”       51:1-6


The spring wind gusts around me, carrying seeds and dust.

With my hands in the dirt


I cannot help but compare myself to the ramp

Using all of my energy to burst through the earth:

To claw my way through this Dunia.


Much like the life of a dandelion,

Bright yellow, vibrant and full of youth,

Our life here is fleeting.

One day our hair too will grow into a wispy white,

We must be mindful of the winds that blow.

We mustn’t wait for our old age to find piety.

You never know when the day will come.

The gust

That will set free the seeds.

“Scatter Broadcast”.

The day when you are risen alone.

With “no protection or helper”.


With arms outstretched,

I look up in awe

At the beauty of the sky.

I look down at the earth

The dirt we were fashioned from.

I revel in the sustenance granted by my maker:

The delicacy I cut from the ground.


There is something Humbling

About the nature of giving and receiving

About my hands in the dirt

About plucking my food from the earth

About the feeling of spring after a long cold winter

About the blessings we are surrounded with

That go unnoticed every day.


I kneel in the dirt

And turn my face to the splendor of the sky.

I close my eyes and smell the earth.

I silently Thank God for all of the beauty

All of the Blessings.

For the food I gather for my family.

For spring

For new beginnings

For being Al Razaaq.

Alhamdulillah I am forever grateful.








Note****Ramps aka. wild leeks are a wild onion found in the forests of Vermont in the spring before the tree leaves come out.  They can be foraged and harvested for about a month.  Also thank you to Maria and Ward Ogden for the beautiful visit we had with they and their lambs this spring.

Breaking free from our “Box”.

You have recently been diagnosed with a problem. Or maybe it is something you have been carrying around with you for a while, and you are tired of it. You are ready to make steps towards change, to turn over your proverbial leaf. Maybe it’s Mental Illness, a Behavioral Issue, Addiction, or Physical Illness that is debilitating or perhaps even fatal. Maybe you’re broke or divorced, or single. Whatever the problem is, it makes you feel bad. It is debilitating, strangling, paralyzing. You have found yourself in a pit of despair, and right now it feels as if life is piling dirt into your pit. There is no silver lining, no knight in shining armor, no pill to help you, no shoulder to cry on or ear to hear you.

Congratulations! “What?!” (You say in udder shock and disbelief). “What an insensitive, wholly unsupportive and even rude statement! How dare you offer congratulations while I am in this ungodly pit of despair, just searching for a way out!”

Congratulations on making the first big step. You want a way out. You want to see the sun, you want to rise from the pit and walk tall, facing your issues head on. You are asserting your control, your own free will over your life. You are taking your personal issue into your own hands and you are ready to make a change. It may be a physical change, a change in mindset or a decision to give up the crutch you have been leaning so heavy on and change it for something else. Although this Pit may seem unGodly, it is exactly where you are supposed to be at this time right now, and you have reached a crossroads. It is now time for you to choose your path. You can do it. You just have to make up your mind to. Your crutch is now your maker, your higher power, your God. You have to find that shoulder that is never going to let you down, the ear that is never going to stop listening. “You have grasped the most trustworthy hand hold that will never break” (The Holy Quran 2:256).


Step one has been completed, you have decided you want change. Step two takes some practice and self reflection, hard truths and realities. I want to refer to step two as a Box. Your illness, addiction, or disorder is a box. You can either define your life by it, and let it be a means to an end for you, or you can turn it into a tool you put in your box that helps you break free. When we choose to let it to define us we become imprisoned in our box. Things become impossible because we are constantly reminding ourselves we have a problem. There is acceptance of a problem and a coming to terms with a problem, and then there is making the problem the reason for all our other problems. Allowing the problem to define who we are and letting the problem tell us what we can and cannot do. For example say you have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder or anxiety and depression. Finding out that this issue exists in our lives can be viewed as a huge setback that we may not want to deal with. Instead of repressing and not dealing we can view this issue as a test we are faced with. We can give our fears and sadness over to our creator, spend quality time in our own thoughts and prayers, and vow to take steps toward change. The serenity prayer is one I love that I try to remember often. “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”  

We can also empower ourselves by using our issue as a window into our state of being. Accepting it. Realizing that it may not always be like this. That in two years our lives may be completely different. We can work and pray towards a positive difference, or positive way of seeing this test or hurdle. We can use these issues as a stepping stone towards wellness. A stepping stone towards not letting our past or our problem define who we are. A stepping stone towards positive action. Instead we can empower ourselves, find what we are passionate for. We can use our passion to find our purpose in life and use that passion and purpose in the folds of Islam. Our number one purpose is to pray, praise, and give thanks to our creator. Why not streamline our passion/purpose to meet our number one purpose? To get our thoughts out of the pit. To work hard searching for that silver lining. For the lesson in our test. Indeed sometimes, there is no way of seeing the lesson while we are in the midst of our test. This is where we call on our Faith. “La hawla wa quwata illah billah.” (“There is no might or power without Allah”.)  We may not have knowledge of what it is we are learning while Allah is testing us, we may never know, or we may know years later down the line if He wills. The ultimate test within the test is TRUSTING ALLAHS WILL, and being content with our DESTINY. Being content in His Decree for us. Just like a precious stone that has become beautiful through metamorphosis, so is Allah’s decree for us. A quote I have read recently it says it best; “When life has brought you to your knees, you are in the perfect position to pray”. Sometimes Allah tests us only so we will draw nearer to him. When things are comfortable it is very easy to become distracted with all the glitter dunia holds. It is in those darkest moments when we are broken and raw, sobbing in sujood, truly humbled and vulnerable…it is in those moments we realize that all POWER lies in his hands alone. That without Allah we are nothing, but a blubbering mess on a salat rug. It is easy to cry to your friend and feel that hug and hear those reassuring words. It takes even a stronger person to seek that resolve with their lord. To invest in the akirah by patiently persevering and remaining forever grateful, and humbled by the grace and mercy of Allah.

Step two is the Box we no longer define ourselves with, but instead we use it as our stepping stone towards wellness. The realization that THINGS CHANGE. It’s the nature of life. The minute that we get stuck thinking that things will never get better is the moment we decide “THINGS WILL NEVER GET BETTER”. Just like a vaccination that helps us build immunity, our tests and trials will make us stronger. Even if they are fatal. If we live our lives despairing over the day we will die it will eventually be the only eyes we use to see the world. Instead we can say, “What will I do today? How will I please my Lord today? How will I love my life today? In this minute?” Being caught in focusing too much on the past or the future can be debilitating. Also maybe we harbor resentment? “My upbringing made me this way.” “Society/the world is unfair and I am a victim of it.” “I wish I didn’t have this reality…why can’t my life just be different?” “I wish my life was like so-and so’s.” This is the hard realities piece. It’s not. This is the hand we were dealt, and we can either just hate our reality, (which will make us more miserable), or we can practice radical acceptance, ask our maker for patience and perseverance and the tools we need to move on, evolve and grow.   Sometimes we may fall into the victim role. This is a dangerous place, a place of self loathing, and blame. Whether we blame ourselves or others, this place of pointing fingers is fruitless. Once the seed of resentment is sown the roots and branches will strangle us. Sometimes we have to forgive others, not for them but so we can stop torturing our own souls. Sometimes we have to forgive ourselves, realizing that we are naturally imperfect, and that our imperfections do not define us. When we find ourselves imperfect it can be a humbling experience. “Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves. And when Allah intends for a people ill, there is no repelling it. And there is not for them besides Him any patron.” (The Holy Quran 13:11). Make the decision to make the change. “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” (Mahatma Gandhi). Ultimately that’s all we can do. If you find yourself paralyzed, practice “opposite behavior”. For example if we are drowning in housework and it is completely overwhelming and all we think we can muster is flopping on the couch in exhaustion then do the exact opposite.   Wash those dishes, throw that load of laundry in and then reward yourself with your couch flop. See how satisfying it feels to flop after you have accomplished your one task you were dreading. Small steps, one foot in front of the other, the moment we stand still focusing on everything wrong is the moment we give into paralysis and become imprisoned in our box. Let’s set ourselves free, open our eyes to the light, look up from our pit…realize that sometimes the light may hurt our eyes at first.   That’s natural; change can be uncomfortable and challenging. Ultimately we have to reflect on the things we need to let go, the things we can change and have the courage and the wisdom to make that difference a reality. You can do it. I can do it. It can be done.

Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you.”(Nathaniel Hawthorn)

We need only to want to change our condition and seek the aid of our creator to find our place of inner peace. We need to actually compare our lives to those beneath us, reflect on their reality. Remember that there is always someone in a worse state than us, make duaa (pray) for those, make duaa for ourselves and patiently persevere one step at a time. We need to remain grateful and thankful for those things that we do have and those days, hours and minutes we have left before the end. Anas ibn Malik reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “If the Resurrection were established upon one of you while he has in his hand a sapling, then let him plant it.” Make the most of our time on the earth, because the only one who knows when that time will be up is our creator. Let us make our scales heavy in His remembrance, with good deeds, and gratitude. May he guide us all, have mercy on us, strengthen us and forgive us all. Ameen.


A reminder to myself first and foremost.  🙂







Love is the sparks of excitement you swallow

Between each kiss.

Love lies in that empty space next to you

in bed, after they’ve gotten up.

The space you crawl into to keep their warmth

and how you secretly smell their pillow as a reminder.

Love is being vulnerable, even when your afraid.

Love Hides;

in between screaming, tears, and slamming doors.

Love is dancing without the need to hold on

for balance.

Love lies in the birth of a sunrise.

When the stars lingering in the clouds fade.

Morning Shines.

Painting sky in colors of dawn.

Ever growing brighter.

“Love is like falling and falling is like this…”**


Yet at home, in the middle of the universe.

Butterflies surround your stomach.


you feel more free than ever before.

Laughing flows out like rivers

and when your eyes connect

it is as if the other is

Soul Searching.

When I fall this time,

you don’t catch me.

Instead, you too allow yourself to fall in.


**Quoted from Ani Difranco song.

I wrote this poem on 10/04/01.  I was asked to write it from a good friend Hannah Smith to read at her wedding.

I love this poem but looking back I feel my life has changed so much that I was barely scraping the surface of Love.

This is because as humans we evolve constantly, particularly when we reflect on our lives.  I am a very reflective person and those who know me well know that my life has done at least a 180 degree turn since 2001.  All thanks be to God.  I laugh to myself because at the time of this writing I was still in awe of 9/11.  I remember vividly flying somewhere and checking out all of the other passengers on my flight fearing a terrorist was among us.  You see, I believed the hype.  I was afraid.  There were some men who looked like they were from India that I was skeptical of, then some darker skinned others that I thought may be Arabian.  I had no one to give my fear over to, as I do now.  I also had not broadened my horizons yet, growing up in one of the whitest states of the union had taken its toll on my view of diversity.  I did not yet know about my “knapsack of white privilege”.  I had just begun to study sociology and some of our articles blew my mind into a whole knew way of thinking.  More specifically I had not yet found religion and within it peace.  I had not yet met my husband and really found that true love that was destined for me.

I am so grateful for my personal evolution, revolution, awakening and revelation.  I am grateful for my family, my friends and everyone I have met on this path.  I am grateful for light and deen (religion) and I pray that my path may be forever illuminated by it.

Alhumdulilah, I am forever grateful.  🙂

From my heart.

LOVE you all.

Peace and Blessings (Assalamu Alakium).


My Opa.

Opa, you will always be the man with the perfectly manicured lawn, the weeping willows that blow in the wind.  Waving a top your big John Deer tractor; in shorts and white socks, that covered your farmers tan, right below your knees, on your skinny little chicken legs. 

You will always be the man so jolly with that glimmer of mischief in your eyes.  The teaser, the walk-behind-you-neck-pincher.  The man who built our whole lives with his hands: my dolly’s bassinet, my mom’s toilet bowl cover, all of our musical piggy banks with our names on them that were impossible to open.  Even that weird woodpecker toy thing with one of your chickens feathers as its tail.  The swing in your back yard, the garden that I learned to pick, shuck and love peas in.  The multiple clocks that would keep me up at night…it was either that or your monstrous snore.

One could look at your life as a child of the Holocaust, an immigrant, and now a victim of Alzheimer’s as one of tragedy, but I prefer to think of your life as the beginning of your legacy.  We may not always have the house you built but we will always have the family that you built.  Your hard work ethic, your craftsmanship, your mischievous spirit and even your laugh will be echoed in our generations and those to come…forever.

For my Opa:  Henry Najman Newman I love you forever. 


Written for his memorial in August of 2010.

A Dam Breaks

Cracked like glass
The break travels
Deeper into my soul.
Separating me from my beloved
My beloved knows the true me
Closer than the views in my neck is he.

He choose me
Lifted me from the darkness
Lifted the veil
From my heart.

Allahu Akbar.

I used to be lost
Stumbling towards the fire
Like a moth,
Entranced by flame.

I still loose my way
Stumbling, I fall off the path.
But he never gives up on me.

I crawl to him,

beseeching forgiveness and mercy.

Time and time again he picks me up,

dusts me off and tells me to not give in

to giving up.

He reminds me how blessed I am,

however close I have come

to the pit of despair.

Trembling I loom on the edge.

Just as a lean forward
About to fall

His love fills my eyes with tears,
My heart opens
As a dam breaks inside my soul.

Alhumdulilah I am forever grateful.