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Musings of a Mum: Pink bathroom

26th Feb 2021
Musings of a Mum: Pink bathroom

There was a bathroom at the far end of a house that plays a big role in my life. It’s where my cousin and I would lock ourselves in and update each other on family gossip, talking about our aspirations and what (or what not to do) to achieve them. It was our secret hideout, and it was pink.

The past month has been unusually intense. There has been no let-up. We have seen several deaths in the family, one every week since the New Year — when we were just about recovering from our bout of Coronavirus. This year has started with a desolate bang, 2020 is beginning to look like God’s warm-up act.

The first lockdown brought many distant family members closer. Their loss (due to Covid-19) has hit us even harder. I am struck by how my distant family closely knits together because no one else would understand our hurt. In the early days of January, when I was feeling particularly vulnerable, I turned to food (not the good sort) and my childhood sources of support — my crazy ‘yaya’ sisters, in them, I was not searching for sympathy — as I find that debilitating — but a space where I felt understood. Where we could laugh, even though our times were sad, and they helped me understand my jangled raw emotions.

They understood my inner child scared of more loss because of many nights and early mornings playing pretend games in which each one of us turned into these alter egos, which were larger than life. In my angst-ridden month, these conversations made me feel connected and bound to life. These women are responsible for ensuring that I played (when all I ever wanted to do was to read). I am not a recluse hermit because of them and, they still to this day help see the light when I cannot.

My gut instinct to turn to my childhood comrades made me think: What is it about these childhood relationships that help us through our turbulent times?

I have come to realise that my values, the rhythms that I choose to live my life by was first put on display in my playing habits. My crazy ‘yaya’ sisters have been witness to that and share (most) of them. My core developed – in my childhood – in the absence of the distractions that adulthood brings, and they have understood the contexts of my development. In my turning back to that time, I needed reassurance that my life was still being lived true to that core.

I think when the fragility of life was on display that whole month, my instinct was to cling on to what felt permanent and unchanging. The repertoire between us and our shared values has not changed over time. In our conversations, I felt safe and secure, bound together by many-a childhood games. These deep relationships, that we form in our childhoods carry us through rocky times in our adult lives.

This realisation has made me realise that I can pack my children’s lives with school, music and tennis lessons to equip them with assets to power them through their adult lives, but if they don’t have time to develop fun, deep and angst-filled relationships with their peers they will not have enough support and comfort to carry them through the curveballs that life throws at them. Our relationships are permanent markers of our allocated time, my sense or connection to life itself was protected by these women who have allowed me to feel, and as a result, allowed me to heal.

Aasiya I Versi

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Over 120 people attended a landmark conference on the media reporting of Islam and Muslims. It was held jointly by The Muslim News and Society of Editors in London on September 15.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence event is to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to society. Over 850 people from diverse background, Muslim and non-Muslim, attended the gala dinner.

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