The Joyous Reruns of Life…

The joy in these has to be accredited in the main to the fact that recollection of these reruns now span six decades…a long time to be sure…but oftentimes when recollecting and recounting, the memories are so freshly on tap…that the heart nostalgically skips several beats! True, memories are kind on the recollection…but that is how it needs to be for the retelling…to try and pass on to the next generation a sense of joy…elation…excitement in the celebration of family, cultural and traditional occasions…

Last week saw us celebrate our Festival of Haj…Eid ul Azha…family from near and far had blessedly got together to spend these three days of festivities, which have a lead-in of ten days of personal effort to be part of the spirit of those performing the pilgrimage of Haj! This includes acts of faith…preparation of all sorts of traditional fare…shopping for traditional garb…specially beautifully colored clinking glass bangles that catch the suns rays in a myriad of hues, often a best-seller for women of all age groups…and my all time favorite…one my lovely sister and granddaughter share with me…henna, the exotic designs colorfully staining your palms to perfection leaving you wishing for more hands to put them on! The excitement is palpable even for those blasé enough to be discounting it! Eid day dawns very early as kitchens are busy with the preparation of traditional and aromatic delicacies to be consumed soon after the Eid congregational prayers! The children impatiently waiting to receive their Eidi…traditional gifts! The resounding of traditional  greetings…Eid Mubarak…throughout the day from family, friends, neighbors, old retainers…near and far! I can almost still feel the excitement of such occasions gone by with my parents and hope and pray that my children and theirs will continue to do so too in years to come. Eid day passes in a pleasurable blur of bonhomie…gluttony…laughter…shared memories…tales of those were the days and do-you-remember…trying to capture the essence of these magical moments in photographs…strengthening of family ties in endless and tiring visits…exhaustion…all this the order of these celebratory days…

Being together…being ‘home’ is reassuringly enough, still as that wonderful website TCK, Third Culture Kids describes…the passport country of our parents…so appropriate for those of us who fall into this category! For a few brief moments in time, this is still ‘home’…even for those it is not anymore…there is an almost undeniable and sometimes hard to acknowledge feeling of harmony with our collective DNA of history, culture and memories, before the return to chosen and adopted lands of residence…but that is subject for another post! The happiness of these celebrations bring back memories of our parents…memories of their love colors my life with a sense of being whole, secure in my sense of belonging…blissfully happy at the celebration that was…the Good Lord be praised…


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. souldipper
    Nov 14, 2011 @ 02:54:57

    Beautiful, Shama. The saints may have different names and the stories may not be the same, but in our hearts, what difference is there? Family, love, fun and special traditions. They build the memories any heart wants to carry!


  2. shamasheikh
    Nov 14, 2011 @ 08:41:57

    Once again Amy you articulate such simple truths so eloquently…thank you! May we all always have the grace and generosity to accept…acknowledge…and celebrate both our differences and our similarities!


  3. bronxboy55
    Nov 14, 2011 @ 15:59:04

    You made me think about something, maybe for the first time: we have an incredible ability to collect, store, sift through, and revisit an endless number of memories. What we choose to retain, and how we choose to incorporate it into our lives, is largely up to us. Thank you for exposing what should have been an obvious truth. Memory is an amazing gift, if we allow it to be.


  4. shamasheikh
    Nov 15, 2011 @ 07:18:44

    You are so right…memory is an amazing and powerful tool…selective memory is often a saving grace too…but more importantly, it is a joyous gift to share and incorporate into our lives with loved ones and maybe, help translate them into legacies of happiness and love…


  5. Priya
    Nov 16, 2011 @ 14:48:54

    Carrying on traditions over generations has more value than we attribute it these days. It is a happy discovery that in your family, it is still practiced.

    My childhood memories of Eid at friends’ places are full of sewain and eidi. How we rushed for our share! When this festival could spread such joy amongst us who partake of it in but small portions, it must fulfill your souls so completely, Shama!


  6. shamasheikh
    Nov 17, 2011 @ 09:05:41

    It made me so happy to hear that you have also enjoyed Eid over the years is truly magical to be able to spend time celebrating traditions with loved ones…I am so thankful that we do so as a family!

    I would really love to have you revisit those memories and celebrate it with us one day….inshallah 🙂


    Nov 19, 2011 @ 04:51:12

    Being home is very reassuring, even though…well…I’m still there! Lol, great post about Eid, it really sounds no different than Christmas celebrations in a certain way. And I’d like to check out that website you mentioned! Is it third culture kids .com?


  8. shamasheikh
    Nov 20, 2011 @ 21:23:57

    So happy you liked the post about Eid…yes I am sure that most traditional celebrations have many commonalities…which is really about the similarities we share in our human need and desire to share and build happy memories with loved ones…please enjoy being home…
    This is the website……got it from a fellow TCK!
    Thank you for visiting…look forward to visiting yours…


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