Thursday, May 01, 2008

I realized some things

That's me and my son at the zoo in Algiers. It was the most pitiful zoo I have ever been too, but we still had a blast. Check Abdurrahman out in his "Algerie" tracksuit. I hear it's a must for every man/boy who travels to Algeria for the first time. I even saw natives with the dang suit on. I have to say he does look pretty darn cute.
So, In my almost 6 years of marriage I have never ever seen a childhood photo of my husband. He could have come out a fully grown man for all I knew. On my first day I made my sister in-law get out the photo albums. I saw hilarious 1960's-70's era photos of all sorts of family members that I have only talked to on the phone or seen in pictures. My mother in law was so beautiful in her wedding photos. I was even "lucky" enough to see pictures of all the male family members circumsicions. Why in hell did she show me that I will never know.
I realized a few things about my husband and I on this trip. Every aspect of our lives was different until we got married. Looking at the crazy, cute, young boy who my son looks so much like was very heartwarming. He was sitting in the bottom row of a class picture. He was squinting because the sun was in his eyes. I've have heard to many stories about school. I noticed his old but clean clothes. His shoes caught my attention. They definitely looked like they had been through better days. I then looked around the apartment I sat in...4 rooms, 2 bathroms, a kitchen, balconies galore, and a washroom(for making wuduu and cleaning clothes). I noticed that there were 2 doors at the entrance. I learned that my in-laws had purchase the apartment next door in 1990. They tore down the wall inbetween and doubled the size of their home. I had to think about that really well. Nine children and two adults lived in a one bedroom apartment for close to 20 years. They slept in a row on a mattress in the the living room.
I almost felt guilty for living my suburban life in America. I went to private school, had the latest and greatest clothes and shoes, a brand new car when I was 15, and my own room in a 4 bedroom house. I knew we had more than others, but I don't always realize how much. While I swam in the pool in our backyard, seven brothers were sharing one bicyclye. It makes you very appreciative when you see how others have lived. I'm amazed that even they can look at others and say Alhamdulillah that Allah blessed them with so much.
What they didnt have in money, they sure made up for with love. They eat dinner together every day. I blamed my in-laws for a lot of things about my husband, but I have realized that they(like me) were just doing the best that they knew how to do. They took a difficult situation and made the best of it. I need to remind myself that although difficult, my situation could be much worse and for that I am THANKFUL.


Blogger Solace said...

I am sure you understand your husband a little better now that you have more insight into his childhood. Although they were poor, I am sure he was raised with strong values.

The circumcision photos... that is really strange... I am not sure how I would have reacted to that.

Hope you will write more about your trip.

2:07 PM  
Blogger jana z. said...

thanks for sharing that. somehow, in all of the disturbance that youre going through, i cant help but remember that all things happen for a reason. perhaps somewhere there in algeria you will find the reason God gave all of this to you and your husband. who knows.

2:41 PM  
Blogger MyHijab said...

Circumcision pics aside, you had me in tears with this post (it could be the pregnancy hormones).

I tend to also forget that my hubby had a childhood too, even if it was so very different to mine. Their childhood shaped the person they are today.

Even though my parents never had any extra money and I shared a bedroom with 2 sisters for 12 years, then with one sis then with my litle bro, I had a bike and went to school and lived a good neighbourhood. While I was playing kings and queens with my siblings, wrapping a bed sheet around my shoulders, my hubby was trying to fall asleep to the sounds of bombings and shootings.

Thanks for your post.

3:46 PM  
Blogger Miss A said...

It's always so humbling to see a different way of life. I'm sure I will get a small taste of that in a few weeks. I'm glad you got to learn more about how your husband lived his early years. I'm sure that insight will be valuable as you go forward through life.

And man, Abdu looks super adorable!!! I can't wait to hear more about your trip. Hopefully we can get together before I leave.

3:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Nice to know you had a wonderful time...and you all are well in back safe....

7:54 PM  
Anonymous Safiya Outlines said...

Salaam Alaikum,

It is strange seeing where your husband came from after just imagining it. I had a good laugh at Mr Outlines' photos, especially the one with an ill advised mustache.

You're right. We all have plenty of reasons to be thankful.

6:05 PM  
Blogger Umm Yehiya said...

So sweet. Honey, I'm so happy to hear from you. Abdu looks scrumptious. ALHAMDULILEH for everything. MashaAllah.
Love you! Call me when you're free to come over, anytime.

5:23 AM  
Blogger Molly said...

SubhanAllah, what a wonderful post. The circumcision album cracked me up, but mashAllah Abdu looks wonderful in his suit.

I love what you wrote about being thankful for what you have and have had in the past. All of my husband's life he has wanted a bicycle and he's never had one, I was lucky in my childhood, alhumdulillah.

12:27 PM  
Blogger iMuslimah said...

Assalamu alaykum,

Glad to hear you had a good time! I think your post was very interesting, as my husband and I had a conversation the other dawned on me, that when inshaallah we finally get to visit his country (tunis), I will probably understand a whole lot more about him and the experiences that shaped him into the man he is today. Im really looking forward to it. He comes from a HUGE family, he's got 13 siblings, and comes from a remote city far from most conveniences, and they did without a LOT of the luxuries we consider normal here in the USA.

I hope your visit was everything you expected, and I hope inshaallay you and Abdu are reunited with your husband again very soon.


5:20 PM  
Blogger UmmAbdur-Rahmaan said...

Alhumdullialh that you had a good time and yougot to see hubby. You know when I read about the zoo it said the zoo in algiers and I immedietly thought...'there is no zoo in Algiers there is only Audubon zoo, I wonder if it has changed since Katrina...' LOL then I realized I was just an idiot......

3:49 AM  
Blogger Safa said...

Circumcision pics? Well, that's a new one. And errrr.....did the mother know who was who? It's just hilarious.......

3:16 PM  
Blogger UmmAbdurRahman said...

safa, in algeria they have a party for the boy's circumcision around like 5 or 6 years old. They wear special clothes and they get gifts. They were full body shots...wearing the special clothes and getting a little snip snip.... So, even I could tell who they were. Even worse, it was my sister in law who was showing me the pics of her brothers...happily pointing out my husband's pic to me. Too weird!

12:48 AM  
Blogger Umm Yusuf said...

As salaamu alaikum sis,

New to bloggerland, but wanted to say mashaAllah, enjoy reading your page =)

fi aman Allah,

10:24 PM  
Blogger Umm Yehiya said...

you're tagged....:)

9:46 AM  
Blogger ummi said...

salam sister,

I just found your blog.

Masya Allah...I pray for you sister. Remember one thing! Only Allah had the most power out of everything. Dua can change all the thing. MAke a special 12 rakaat prayer. Put in your heart doesn't matter what immigration or US government said, you had got the most power with you all the time. The power of ALlah. MAke dua that ALlah will not test you in the test that you cannot cope. Insya ALlah, I believe you all will be back together as a family. You need to get out all the worry, even a tiny bit worry. I know it hard. Believe me. I might been through different thing. But, our journey had always go through beyond human rules and human law. Because the law is man made. But, Allah is something that nobody can challenge.

Keep it up. I would like to talk to you.

This is my email:

I live in UK and I can give you a call anytime for free. So, don't worry. If you need to talk to someone, I be happy to be there for you.

12:41 AM  
Blogger Rainbow In The Grey Sky said...

aslamu alakum sister
i am living in Algria noew for 3 years and my inlaws are from BEO too. I know what you mean about the simplicity and getting on with it subhanAllah. They learn to surrvie and get on with it and remain happy mashaAllah. I am living in the areas you mentioned you once rented.

1:12 AM  
Blogger Umm Ibrahim said...

People videotape the circumcision these days too! yikes!

Looks like you had a great time in Algeria, alhamdu Lillah. As for the housing, subhan Allah it's a shocker isn't it?? :/ I just made a post this myself.

2:32 AM  

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