10 years of blogging!

On a night like tonight, ten years ago I began something that changed my life…

In fact, September 8 is amongst special dates like my anniversary, and my kids’ birthdays.

I was young. At 19, I was in my fantasy world of books, university essay papers, volunteering and I had just started work with START NGO. Life was all beautiful butterflies and a garden of roses.

I sat down in my room, where stacks of books created by bedside tables and I had as much pens as girls have MAC lipsticks these days. My notebooks exceeded the number of shoes and handbags I had, and 3-in-1 Nescafe was always left cold in my full-of-inspirational-quotes mug. I don’t know if I was your average 19-year-old. My interests were somewhat different.

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My parents always taught me there is more to life than we see. From early on I was given the self confidence, courage and motivation I needed to set myself free, flap my wings and be an eagle, a dove and even a little chic at times. But what was important is that my wings were not clipped. As I learned, sadly, that many girls in my society did not have this privilege (right) that I had.

You see, life back then was different. There was no instagram or snapchat, Facebook was very new and I didn’t even have a Twitter account. We were only just starting to tackle female genital mutilation, and Kurdish boys were in the trend of calling random Korek numbers in an attempt to find their princesses… (yup, more than one princess).

My enjoyment was meeting people, and writing their experience. I was learning to know my people more, and I loved work, lots of work. I floated from place to place, from meeting to meeting and I connected with people in all walks of life. I came home to drop my bag,  grab my notebook and sometimes have something to eat before I placed the laptop on my lap to write some of those experiences. Some were published in my weekly Kurdish Globe column called Memoirs, others in my personal diary and some right here, in this corner of the WWW.

On a night like tonight, I decided to open a blog, signed up, wrote my first post (I probably learned about blogging from Oprah, as it was the only show I watched), I even remember I quoted the lyrics of the Australian artist Delta Goodrem, “I was born to try…” the song starts with: “Doing everything that I believe in, going by the rules that I have been taught,” 

A lot of things in my life have changed since that night, exactly ten years ago tonight. But you know what has remained the same? The lyrics of that song I wrote, I still believe in every word, it still reflects every instant of my life, it still speaks to me… but to my current circumstances.

I was free, I was courageous, I was much more hopeful and optimistic than I am today.

Tonight, I write this post 29 days before my son’s third birthday. I write this post after I have taken my kids to my best friend’s house and barely managed to have a proper conversation as I had to cater to each of their needs. I write after having showered them both, put the eldest to sleep, and attempted a good eight times to put the little one to sleep too.

I write while I have two milk bottles on bedside table (not sure why there’s two, it’s supposed to be only one), and I am probably surrounded by more nappies than pens, more packets of wet-wipes than notebooks, and no more 3-in-1 Nescafe, but rather a lidless bottle of water because Google said I had to if I wanted to continue breastfeeding.

My achievement, ten years later? The kids are in bed before 8. Both of them.

Joking.

No, seriously.

In the past ten years thanks to this blog I have connected with the most inspiring people, I met one of my best friends, and we managed to collect donations for dozens of causes. With this blog I have grown as an individual. Just by reading older posts I realise how I have transitioned as an individual. How my thoughts have grown, how my views have been influenced and how my interests have shifted. The beauty of motherhood took me to a journey of its own, where I discovered aspects of myself I never knew about.

I am not the most consistent blogger, neither am I the greatest writer. However, I am so proud of maintaining something I have truly believed in for a decade now. I have written about everything from Sar-u-peh to mental disability, I would have definitely changed the title of that post- sorry! I wrote about Valentines days, call out to charitable causes, supporting friends here, here and here, I wrote at the Book Cafe , in buses and even the night before Jezhn; I also complained a lot about healthcare, about education, and I complained more about healthcare! I wrote about amazing Kurdish woman like SazaSoza, Kanya, Razaw, Raz and Beri; I went to Rwandz, the Citadel, and Qaysari; I wrote about Pura Gulizard, Mala Hamid, Mam KhalilMam Khalil again, Pura Parween,

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Since then I have also blogged in Tasbih & Chai as I became a postgrad student, and then at Daya Sazan when I began my journey to motherhood. These acted like my online diaries, in addition to my handwritten diaries addressed to my children when they’re older…

From a 19-year-old bird fluttering from tree to tree, to a nesting mother of two–hugging under her wings her life’s most valuable treasure. Tonight, my eldest child turns 10.

Thank you to those of you who grew with me in this little, humble corner of the world wide web…. thank you for reading, for sharing with me my tears, frustration and  also moments of joy. Thank you for all the Pyalas of chai you served yourself before dropping by here… for that, I love you!

To my Yad and Lulu… mummy, are you reading this at it’s 20th anniversary?

Lots of love from

My Nest in Kurdistan

Sazan,

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