final days!

its our last weekend in Kuwait as we head home in a couple days and I’m already starting to miss it. The weathers been creeping up on a daily basis and with Ramadan coming up next week, temperatures are set to hit at least 65degrees which is a bit cray cray so I think we’re all thankful we won’t be here for that.

Whenever it’s time to go back ‘home’ there’s a whole lot of feelings and thinkings passing through which make me question this life that we’ve chosen to live abroad. I think it’s safe to refer to ourselves as expats as we most probably will be away for a couple more years (inshallah) but life as an expat is a tricky one. You’re away from everything familiar and your entire comfort zone, which is great in terms of personal growth and adventure etc etc. but it leaves little room for personal connection and ‘real’ friendships. Not to say it’s impossible, I think this year especially we’ve met a few amazing souls who have truly become family and we’ll all definitely keep in touch for ages, and fair enough this might not apply to everyone, but I just feel it’s a tad ‘meh’ and a bit of a reality check maybe. The other day one of our friends went back to Ireland, the first of our group to depart and we all secretly felt this sadness come over us (the boys didn’t cry but you could tell lol). He won’t be coming back to Kuwait and although we only met this school year, we all had become really close and had become accustomed to seeing each other almost every day and hanging out etc. and it all just stinks a little bit. As an expat you have to learn to ‘let-go’ a lot easier and kind of live this life of inconsistency; which is great at times, but if you’re someone who gets attached quite easily like me, it’s not the greatest feeling or mental state you want to be placed in. You feel conflicted because on one hand you’ve chosen this way of life for yourself for whatever reason, knowing the consequences which come with it but you still really love it, and on the other hand when you see everyone back home so ‘together’ and ‘regular’ you envy (in a nice way) that sense of normalcy which could have been yours if you had stayed. As an expat, I think when you meet new people who are on that same wave-length as you, you naturally gravitate towards cultivating an closeness with them which kind of begins immediately because in a way they’re going to be all you’ve got for that year. For me anyways lol and that might sound a little creeperish, but you skip that phase of getting to know someone inside out and giving yourself that period to decide if you want them in your life or not and talking to your friends about them etc etc. It’s more along the lines of ‘hey! you’re not from here, I’m not from here, we like similar things, we can have a laugh, you like chocolate and tea, so lets be friends for the year and travel together!’ For example, teachers come from all over the world yea, it might be their first time ever abroad or first time in a certain place or whatever and meet other teachers. A month into the year you’ve got a week off and end up going someplace with another teacher who is essentially a stranger to you is kind of cool no?! Back home there are people I’ve known for ages who we would never travel with, yet we would gladly travel with any one of the new people we’ve met this year. (I’m not sure if this makes any sense or what my point is, but it’s more along the lines of thinking aloud if anything..)

I was speaking to someone a few days ago and I mentioned that when you’re away everyone forgets about you, and I feel that to be true to some extent. Not that it infuriates me or I expect friends and family to stop living their lives or anything of the sort, but when you begin to watch your former life and the people in it through your phone or via social media sites, it tugs at your heart strings a little bit. I’ve missed countless birthdays and special moments, uni graduations, my grandma being extremely ill, my brother and sister growing up and becoming real-life adults and flying the coop whilst mama dearest has mastered the art of whatsapp so we can keep in touch and it makes my heart hurt x ‘Edible Arrangements’ has become a sad reality of how my affection is forced to be showered upon family as are florists and cookiegram deliveries L

I know I might sound really unhappy at the moment lol but I’m not, and that’s where the inner conflict lies. I love my job and the opportunity to be doing what I do and where I work and all of that and alhamdulillah a million times for everything we’ve got and been blessed with and had the chance to do. I wouldn’t change a thing and I stand by my choice to do what I’ve done, but at times I sit and wonder what my life would be like if I hadn’t left so early and embarked upon ‘life’ when I did. I graduated from uni 2years ago and had been accepted to do my Masters at King’s in the UK which was  ‘the plan’ lol but then Kuwait came up and I figured why not I feel like I’m going off on a tangent here lol but the point is that I was 22 when I left home, a month after graduation, which looking back now for me makes me feel like I was a baby and wonder how my mama let me go lol bless mama with the world inshallah she’s never ever ever closed the windows to the world for any of her kids x I was 17 or 18 when she let me go to Nepal on my own to work in an orphanage where I had a mini heart attack on the plane realizing what I had gotten myself into and how far away from home I actually was lol and my wee sister survived 6 months studying and travelling in East Asia on her own after randomly chilling in Rwanda which even I had reservations about lol but I think doing everything when I did allowed me to put things into perspective in terms of my life and how I envision it to play out inshallah x It might not seem like a big deal to some people about leaving on your own and travelling etc etc. but for me, coming from a really close family and even being a Muslim girl and having my mama willingly push us and encourage us to travel and go wherever our heart desires is kind of a big deal. I know some Muslims see it odd for girls to travel on their own and without a mahram and I’m sure assume the parents have no control over children etc etc. but oh well.

Someone left a comment on one of my posts asking ‘what words of wisdom do you have for young Toronto native females who are looking to marry rich and live lavishly in third world countries?’ and that stings because I don’t feel I portray that image via my blog or any other postings. We got married when I was 20 (my choice and again love to mama for always supporting her kids x) and both students who are still paying off uni debt, and live within our means. Regardless of, I don’t think I need to justify my life to anyone but boo you whoever you are!

It’s nearly time for juma (Friday prayers) so I shall be off. Last Friday before Ramadan inshallah so Ramadan Mubarak to all of you anticipating this special month! Inshallah it’s a meaningful one for all of us and we take advantage of it x Got loads of packing to do as well and maybe last minute shopping if Shaheer agrees! Mabrouk to everyone who’s also graduated and have a fabulous weekend!! Xx


  1. Aubrey Graham
    June 12, 2015 / 10:15 pm

    This is what your readers want, no haughty posh undertones, no jewels or designer shoes, just you and your innards; you gutted yourself for once, and it was a privilege to read your beautiful articulation of the personal trials and tribulations you’ve faced in overcoming your fears and truly OWNING your life. This is why I instigated in the first place, to probe, to provoke you to tell us who you are inside and not who you are relative to everything around you, cuppa xo.

  2. W
    July 6, 2015 / 11:22 pm

    My husband and I have been teaching and living the expat life for a few years now. At the beginning I felt the same as you. Every time I went home as much as I loved seeing everyone, eventually I began to feel that things never really changed although I had and it was almost a little claustrophobic after a few weeks. I longed to go back out in the world and travel and be by ourselves again. The expat life is funny, it’s a strange in-between life. Good luck, you will eventually find your happy medium and be better for it in the end. Wasalam.

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