Friday, 30 December 2011

Coz there's always next year...

If someone in the future had to ask me what 2011 was like, I wouldn't be able to recall everything off-hand because so much happened in such a short space of time that I'd have to take out my list: Revolutions, Tsunamis, Earthquakes, Anders Breivik went bonkers, Financial Crisis, Royal Weddings, Famine, Protests from here to the moon FOR Democracy & AGAINST Corporate Greed, Poverty, Osama bin Laden bonding with Ariel (still not buying the whole story on that one), Flooding, More Famine, More Revolutions, More Protests, More Financial Crisis...

Wall Street and Tahrir Square became the most sought after real-estate in the world; and somewhere in between all that Elizabeth Taylor, Amy Whinehouse, Steve Jobs and a million other people died.

But even if some of us weren't swimming in the moat of all the shit that was 2011... while the rest of world brewed in chaos, social and political upheaval and natural disasters, most people weren't left unscathed - either being mentally, emotionally, financially or cosmically affected by the goings on in yonder. Why? Well, because we are all connected, as everyone from Einstein to Coelho will tell you.
Personally, this year brought about many wanted and unwanted changes to my life. I moved from my comfy spacious house in the suburbs to a smaller space near the city. After much internal dialogue, discussion and debate, I took a huge leap of faith and decided to dive in head first into a new career. I made new friends, lost some and got re-acquainted with old ones.

I also failed in some areas of my life too. I regret not doing everything I had set out to do in 2011 despite my numerous attempts. Specifically with regard to travel. But life got in the way and there was work as well as other commitments and circumstances beyond my control that kept me behind.

Generally, I don't like hope. In my experience, hope only ever leads to expectation. And expectations are never good because they tend to cloud ones judgement. In this instance, I did not only fail myself but others too and there's not much I can do about it except apologise. But sometimes apologies aren't enough. And even though they've failed me too, I won't hold it against them... c'est la vie. I won't beat myself up about it but I definitely won't be making the same mistakes again.

On a somewhat brighter note, I discovered an amazing Doctor. Not that Doctor. I'm talking about this one:
His intelligent dialogue, quick wit and sarcastic humour has me captivated. Never before has a middle aged British man masquerading as an American seemed so appealing. Props to Hugh Laurie.

Perhaps the biggest challenge I had to face in 2011 was my health - or lack thereof. For about two years straight I had been suffering with various health problems. I'd been to doctor after doctor, spending thousands on incompetent "professionals" who were not interested in helping me as much as they were interested in helping themselves to my money and not really doing anything for me at all. By March/ April this year, the symptoms were so severe that we were convinced it was cancer. I was so freaked out and stressed about it. It wasn't the dying I was afraid of. Dying I can do. It's living without knowing what the hell is going on that was killing me slowly.

I began to hate... no scratch that, fucking HATE doctors and refused to see another one. Alternative treatments and holistic healing helped a bit, but it still wasn't pinning down the ongoing problem. Every week was a new thing... the worst was the violent mood swings. I was like a Schizophrenic Bitch from Wonkytown - irrational and irritable most of the time while my endocrine, immune and nervous systems decided to vacation on the Isla de Muerta with witty Jack and his crew of miscreants.

But then one day in early October, all that changed. Strolling in with the fresh spring breeze, was my knight in shining Mercedes. Or BMW. Whatever - I can't remember. These things aren't important to me. I just remember it was black, new, shiny and freaking expensive. And beautiful. And he was beautiful. And he just took one look at me and told me EXACTLY what I had been waiting to hear for so long. And that's what made Mother's Doctor so fucking awesome. He single-handedly put an end to my two-year ongoing misery with just one sentence... and he didn't charge me a cent for it.

Turned out, I'm allergic to Gluten. So since October I've had to say goodbye to Bread, Cake, Biscuits, Burgers, Pizza, Baguettes, Pastries, basically everything made or derived from flour, wheat, rye, oats, barley - and since 90% of everything found in stores contain either - that's almost every single delicious thing under the sun. For at least 3 years. Sucks ass I tell you. But the good news is that all my symptoms have disappeared. And it's a bonafide diagnosis. I'm so grateful for that.

Anyways, so what is there is look forward to in 2012? Well for one, the world's ending. That should be fun. Then there are some major developments at work and having just been promoted, I will only be teaching part-time. The other half of the time will be spent on some interesting projects and initiatives. We're going Global. 

Other than that, I don't really know. I'll just be winging it with the rest of humanity - praying for the best. I do hope to actually DO some of the things I haven't had time for in the last year... I want to read more (books). I want to travel more. I want to take better care of myself.

Every year we wait in vain, hoping that the next year will be better.  I don't lament seeing the end of 2011, but I honestly don't see things being any different in 2012. If anything, it will be more of the same and it might even become worse. Not to be the bearer of doom and gloom.

In the past I've advocated LIVING life numerous times on this blog, and not just existing or becoming a spectator in it. However, I've found that it doesn't help much to do your living in the past or the future - something so many of us are accustomed to doing - to our own detriment. So this year I aim to not only live, but to LIVE IN THE MOMENT. Seize the day.

Happy New Year Everyone. And if all else fails, we can just start again in 2013. Right, as you were.


  1. I feel like you've summarised my entire year. Bring on 2012:D

  2. It really has been a bit of a revolutionary year, hasn't it? Part of me wants to be very cliche and say that next year is going to be your year, but we all know that when people say that we just want to punch them in the throat. Instead I will say this... It's either going to be better or worse and regardless of the result, I'm glad I met you and your slice of the internet world. You inspire me, make me smile, make me think, and I wish you lived next door! :D Happy New Year to you! ~hugs~

  3. Si, carpe el puto día. And let me know if your travelling brings you to either Spain or Portugal.

  4. "...the symptoms were so severe that we were convinced it was cancer." That sounds familiar to me. You're lucky to finally have met a good doctor - some who knows what he's doing. If you were an American, my first advice would be to sue all the other 'professionals'... But not today. Today we raise our glasses and hope... no, we don't hope... and... um... well, drink whatever we feel like drinking. How's that for an original idea, Azra? ;)

  5. happy new year!!! cam to visit my blog and if you like we can follow each other (also on facebook!) ...keep in touch!

  6. SI
    Well I hope 2012's summary will be better ;)

    And part of me would love to believe the cliche that next year is going to be my year :) I'm also glad to have met you Angie, it was one of this years highlights. Happy New Year! *hugs*

    I'm really really REALLY hoping it does. I'm in the mood for a Spanish adventure! :)

    Happy New Year to you too :)

    :D We can still hope - without expectations. I'm so glad/ grateful to have gotten to the root of my problem. It's like a mountain has been lifted off my shoulders. I know that you know how that feels. And yeah great idea, we can drink whatever we like ;)

    Thanks for visiting.

  7. I hope 2012 is better than 2011 was for me! Following :)

  8. salaam azra,

    if this title has been changed by you after reading my comment on the dajjal,and if i happen to be that 'idiot,' lol,
    i have to say , i'm honored.

    or maybe i misunderstood. that's a possibility too.

    but the mayans did predict that a major change would come this 2012. other cultures may have also had this year in mind when delivering prophecies in the past about some major upheaval in the face of this world that everyone awaited.

    i didnt mean to upset you by suggesting that the dajjal meant doomsday. according to islamic eschatology, doomsday is quite far off and ALLAH alone knows the hour. there are other major signs following the dajjal as prophecised by muhammad pbuh, like the rule of isa a.s. as thr khalifa over all people. the gog and magog's rampancy , the beast of the earth (ALLAH knows whatever that is) the major landslides, rising of the sun from the west and others.
    all following the period after dajjals downfall.

    however,the dajjal is described as the greatest tribulation ALLAH has created to test the believers with. no one and no thing the likes of this man ever emerged in the past. he is the antichrist in every sense of the word.

    and from the same sources of ahadeeth , the signs preceding the dajjal have all come to pass !

  9. do you understand now the reason for my concern ?

    the dajjal is a new world order ruler who will make an attempt to 'unify' all people under his religion. people that scream 'unity' 'peace' and 'freedom' without understanding the underlying mechanism that brings about those things will easily fall under his sway.
    these are the smae people who believe that things like the world cup unites people and brings peace.

    for shame !

    you and i both undertsand that humans need to unite on a much grander and deserving reason than trivial things. nimrod wanted to unify people too. was that good? no. becuase the spirit in which he tried to do it was morally wrong. his reasons were wrong. and im sure you are well aware of what his reasons were.
    imagine this : if i went to israelis and palestinians and suggested and even coerced them into making peace on the basis that they both eat kabsa and hummus, would it be a fitting reason? wouldn't it be an extreme disregard of justice ?
    regardless of me wanting peace, the situation and terms arent ideal for it. people identify themselves with lofty causes the terms of which needs be seen to, not things like football, or economic security or hummus.

    would mahatma gandhi stop protesting if the brits told him we'll leave britian but india must always pay tribute to us. would gandhi agree to it? even if that would bring about a visible end to the conflicts?

    no. because, to man, principles are everything. you know this.

  10. do you really think all the world's problems aren't being orchestrated since 9 11 ? you know the 9 11 was a sham right? as was osama bin laden ?
    they are creating a panic on a global scale to give us all an excuse to abandon our faiths and principles by making our religions and traditions as their scapegoat.

    why? so that they can persuade us to have it all replaced by a new thought, a new vision : no GOD, only man, and only this life. this is the tribulation of dajjal. and when most of the world sings this song, he will emerge.... in the flesh. to rule over us all.

    it'll be a peace for the fools.

    i don't consider you a fool.

    azra, did you know that the prophet pbuh predicted that the dajjal will build a home for himself in the outskirts of medina, since he wont be able to enbter it ?
    please type in 'dajjal palace' and you will see a mysterious palace in illuminati style architectural design being built overlooking medina, funded by unseen and mysterious benefactors.
    its happening in saudi wahhabi conrolled arabia as we speak. please, check it out.

    the dajjal is a man, not simply an idea. the idea precedes the man, see.
    so when the idea has wreaked havoc on this world with all its intrigues and violent upheavals (as theyre happening now) the man will emerge offering us a 'solution.'
    true to his name, dajjal, meaning the deceptive one, he will make us relinquish our values (belief in ALLAH, religion, morals) for the 'peace' we so seek.

    good cop, bad cop. same result.

    sister, i'd like to post more comments regarding this but you've made it quite clear that you will not correspond with me directly, and i respect your reasons for it.

  11. Dear none

    I only had to read the first two sentences of your first comment to make this one. So I didn't even bother reading the entire thing - or the other two comments.

    Let me clarify: I don't know what the hell you're on about. I don't even know who you are. I was referring to something someone said on my Facebook account about the world ending when I changed the title.

    Sorry to disappoint you. I often find that people will only relate to things that they identify with or feel guilty about. Peace be with you.

  12. this is really embarassing, i wasnt doing it to give anyone trouble.

    fortunately for the most of us, guilt isnt our primary driving force.

    but please do consider the whole thing, since it pertains to us all.

  13. i thought u read my other comments on the 'dajjal' post of yours and so thought you were referring to me.

    never mind.

  14. Dear none

    I was not referring to you or any of your comments on the Dajjal post. We all have our opinions on the Anti-Christ but I have never emphatically stated that I believe him to be human or not. I believe that there is knowledge out there that is not ours to possess, and I let it be. If we were meant to know for certain, we would. I don't make any assumptions, nor do I negate and disregard certain facts.

    That said, I have since reverted to the original name of this post to avoid similar confusion from anyone else reading too much into it. I am not blaming or mocking you, these things happen.

    All the best into the New Year.

  15. all the best to you too.

    2012 is the beginning of strange things about to happen. so please, be careful, since you're living abroad, and our kind will be the hardest hit by this whole thing.

  16. "the dajjal is a new world order ruler who will make an attempt to 'unify' all people under his religion. people that scream 'unity' 'peace' and 'freedom' without understanding the underlying mechanism that brings about those things will easily fall under his sway." I'm always scared by people who make me feel like a worthless IDIOT because they know the truth and I don't. Which brings me to why I, the worthless idiot, still fail to fathom why it's called BELIEF rather than TRUTH. Happy new year to them anyway... I'm sure I need to go and repent now.

  17. I think Angie summed it up pretty well :)

    I usually rely on my gut instinct, and my gut is screaming that 2012 is going to be spectacular! I just know it...

    Also, I started my exercise routine which I somehow just never got down to these past two years... so here's hoping I can keep that up.

    Have an awesome year my friend.
    I look forward to visiting your beautiful garden on the interweb and leaving with nothing but smiles and the fragrance of contentment for having a friend like you.

  18. All in all seems like a good year! Look forward to more shenanigans and interesting posts in 2012.

  19. I'll be hosting an end-of-the-world party at my place and you're welcome to come and watch the world go out in a blaze of glory on December 21, 2012 - or to wake up the next morning.

    I'm VERY happy that your health has returned and that chocolate is not on the forbidden-to-eat list.

  20. Just out of curiosity, will all this year's posts start with "Coz..."?

  21. RCB
    To each his own :)

    Thank you for all your well wishes and kind words. It's good to know that there are some great people on the internet that I can call friends :)

    Thanks! I hope it's a much better year, as cliché as that sounds :)

    Sounds like it will be a good party. I'll bring the lava cake as a symbol of all the volcanoes erupting :)

    I still don't know if I want to go the "Coz..." route this year. I want (and need) a fresh approach. Perhaps I should take a vote, should it stay or should it go...

  22. I cannot help but feel hopeful. After the year I had last year, things have gotta be a tad, wee but better.

    So glad you got a proper diagnosis. If you want many gluten free products, try the Fresh Earth Food Store in Emmerentia. I love that place and the lovely veg food!

    Wishing you a 2012 filled with many more travels, perfect health and many chocolates.

  23. Prixie
    Thanks for the well wishes and for the name of the store! I will definitely be checking it out. Hope 2012 is more than just kind to you and yours ;) x

  24. Love it! and completely agree about living in the present moment. May your year be filled with 'presence', good health and some exotic travel thrown in :)

  25. Roshan
    Thanks! Wishing you all the best for 2012 too! :)

  26. Living in the moment is my New Year's resolution, too. God knows I've been much too anxious about the future, and have abandoned just soaking up and enjoying the moment at present too many times.

    I'm so sorry to hear about your gluten allergy, I had no idea you had gone through so much. :( But I'm glad to know that it's been resolved, and that a gluten-free diet should help. My aunt is also gluten-free, she has amazing recipe books and other information - let me know if you need anything. And like I mentioned before, gluten allergies are VERY common here, so let me know if you need any products (gluten-free flour, baked goods, etc). Actually, just send me your address soon? :)

    By the way, I'm with you, Einstein and Coelho - we are all connected to one another! It's something I've always felt and believed. Maybe that's why so many of us agree that 2011 wasn't much of a year? Anyway, I have a feeling that 2012 will be a good one. ;)

  27. Michi
    I will email you soon. Wishing you a FANTASTIC 2012 - I hope it's everything you want and more ;)