Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Birthday Letter 2010

Another year, another one of your birthdays.

I nearly forgot that I promised to write you a letter every year on your birthday, and yet, just like the time that crept up on me last year and tapped me on the shoulder, I got a tap that brought it to my attention that it's time again, and that I should sit down and give you the gift I promised I would give every year. A little time to sit and think.

I read last year's letter, and it's surprising how much has changed since then. I almost feel like a fraud, a liar. Then again, I wasn't lying so, I'm neither. Nevertheless, I didn't move to Australia, (but I think you know that already. Silly me) I really wanted to, and for the right reasons (ok, so perhaps one or two reasons weren't very 'right', but they were right as well. You know what I mean) but I didn't end up going. I think part of it was fear. That little frog that creeps up from the bottom of your belly and just sits in the most uncomfortable part of your throat that although still allows you to breathe, makes it increasingly claustrophobic. Maybe I got your claustrophobia after all, somehow. The longer it took me to make those determining steps towards that move, the more that frog got comfortable, and the harder the thought of leaving Mama and Musha (who you haven't met, but I'm sure you would love as much as mama and I do) scared me. The more the thought of once again having to start over paralysed me. But I have no regrets. I still have moved in terms of what I want to do. No, I don't want an office job, I still am freelancing, and yes it's difficult sometimes but it's ok. I'm working on my discipline. It's not there yet, but it's getting there. Somewhere is better than nowhere.

It's been a big year for music Baba. I've been eyeball deep in all the wonders and all angles of it. I've built a library I'm proud of, I've become a reference (humbly) of sorts for friends and even acquaintances. I've been DJing for around 8 months, and I love doing it. Yes, long nights, and yes, it can be tiring, but I get paid to do something I love. I get my drinks for free (more or less) and I get to play music I love. If only it was something I could do full time. Come to think of it, it can be, but I don't think that's what I want to do. Not in the long run. I've also met a lot of local talent, and they never cease to impress me. Some of them at least. I work for free sometimes, helping them promote their gigs, and their projects. Yes, I know it's never a good idea to, but part of me feels that the pay off is much greater than the cost of those few hours. I think you know exactly what I mean.

I'm also trying to push the illustration. I think you'd like that. I sometimes try and imagine what you would say when I show you a drawing I finish after 7 hours of not moving and zoning out while I get those lines cleaner, and a specific style pegged. I sometimes really really wish I didn't have to imagine. Sometimes I wish so much the wish goes numb, and I put it in that jar of fireflies on that shelf in my mind that's made just for you. It glows silently at it's own pace among the others, existing but non intrusively. There's nothing much I can do with it really...

Where I am in the scheme of things, I'm not sure. I have a feeling I'm on the right track. Yes, I may get side tracked sometimes. But it's ok. Right? You only live once. I might as well see where that little alley leads as long as I don't lose site of the headlights on the highway.

So I'm still in Beirut. I'm more stable, I'm in a relationship that although can be frustrating sometimes, it's a good exercise in patience and balance. And so far so good. I'm happy on that front. Work is work. I'm fumbling in the dark but it's a warm dark. It's a nice dark. Like closing your eyes when picking a sweet from a bag of pick-and-mix. You may get the jazzie instead of the fizzy cola, but you end up making the best of it. (That made no sense to you. Or complete sense. Either way, I can feel you smiling.)

I visited London recently, and it was great. It was nice to be around those familiar faces, familiar places. But it also reminded me why I left. I felt tired, and felt I wanted to be home. So expensive, and so big. Everything needed to be planned, and the pace was too fast. So I although I enjoyed my time, I looked forward to going back home to those I love, and the streets that are familiar to my gait. And that's a good feeling. I think I know now how one know's where they should be. Or at least where they shouldn't be.

I hope you feel my good thoughts wherever you are. You're sorely missed. And more and more I'm bumping into your friends, sometimes by mistake. Sometimes they don't know you're not here anymore. And I have to see their faces shift, their eyes suddenly react in split seconds of despair. It's never easy but I keep my head up despite the added weight of yet another person feeling your loss burdening my heart.
And I make sure they know that you're alright. We're alright.
Sometimes I feel I'm lying, but it's an ok lie to lie. Because it's a lie that everyone knows the truth it's sugar coating. And then the despair in their gaze that quickly becomes a warmth and comfort at being in the presence of someone who carries your scent makes my heart lighter, and somewhere the apple shining "daddy's girl" part of me scurries around to make you proud, though it is only through someone who is a stranger to me when compared to you.

I have to go now, duty calls. Musical duty yes, but duty nevertheless.

I love you very very much. And I wish you a happy birthday baba.
See you next year. And tomorrow. And every day till then.




The Negative Girl said...

My goodness..
I'm sure you already know this, but that writing of yours.. a sting to the heart. Do people really feel like that anymore?

cardejah said...

the lie that is okay will become truth one day.
everything will be okay eventually, even if it takes longer than you are patient for.
if you don't mind, I shall recite al-fatiha for your father before I sleep tonight.


joven said...

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joven said...

beautiful blog..pls visit mine and be a follower.. thanks and God bless..


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Meedo Taha said...

Beautiful. Just... beautiful.