28 May, 2009

"Observe all men; thy self most"

I was telling this friend of mine today about how I feel that I have somehow created these unseen 'self imposed boundaries' around myself which refrains me from doing certain thing(s). Boundaries which do not allow me to liberate myself, boundaries which have no material form or addresser, these are just in my mind and I somehow try to find a material cause of these boundaries, just so that I have something to put the blame on. The friend didn’t seem to understand what I meant, but I am sure there is something quite abnormal going on within me and I swear I need to address it to myself; I really need to understand what is wrong! So for that I’ve thought of tracing my own past. I’ll share the little I recall of my behavior in the form of incidents and I’ll leave it on the readers to decide for what they think about it.

Incident number one: Quite a number of years ago when me and family used to live in our old apartment, that’s when I and my other two siblings i.e. my eldest sister and my brother shared one room (don’t freak out, we were just children then). So, this room had two single beds which were joined together to make one double bed so that all three of us could easily fit on it. My brother slept on one side of the bed and my sister on the other where as I occupied the middle portion. Now, from what I can recall, I always squeezed myself inside the tiny bent portion which is acquired by joining two single beds. It was actually a piece of wood on which I used to sleep. My sister would ask me to move in on her side of the bed (there was plenty of soft mattress for me, I assure you all) but I would just remain there on the hard wood instead of the soft mattress. Why though is the question! Who likes to sleep on the piece of a log anyway?

Incident number two: I go to the university in a van. One day when I was picked up from my point, there was just one seat which was left to be occupied in the entire coaster so I took that seat and settled myself on it. After a while the van stopped in front of a girl’s house who apparently travelled in the same van as me but I certainly didn’t know her. She approached the van and scanned it to spot a vacant seat which was obviously not there. In cases like that, what the subject or the ‘victim-of-no-seat’ is supposed to do is to sit on the only vacant hard base place where everyone keeps their bags and stuff. Well, while that girl was deciding what to do, I removed the bags from that hard base and situated myself on that rock hard and uncomfortable area leaving my cushion like soft seat for that girl whom I didn’t even know.

Incident number three: It’s like 42 degrees centigrade in Karachi these days. The human meat can literally cook at this temperature (or may be that’s an exaggeration) but here’s the smart me who turns off the fan and locks herself in the room when she is angry and mad at something or someone. I mean who in the world does that? When no one is looking at you why would you want do that? I’d totally understand that kind of behavior as a response of your anger if “there is” someone who is watching you. Like people do go on food strike and stuff like that but that’s a protesting behavior. Here I'm in no way protesting (I think), or if I am, then who am I protesting to? I mean I'm shutting down the fan, okay no big deal, but shutting down the only cool thing in such a weather, knowing that no one is watching you is freaky! WHY THE HELL WOULD SOMEONE DO SUCH A THING?

Incident number four: I recall my childhood days when I and my elder sister used to play teacher-teacher with each other. She always wanted to become the teacher so I would tell her that I’d let her be the teacher only If she promises me that she’ll become a tough teacher who would punish her students, hits them hard and indulge in giving very strict punishments. I, for that matter would become the student on who she would have to practice her cruelty. She would refuse to do such a thing on my face and I’d declare that I am not playing if she refuses to be tough on me.

All of the above incidents have one common feature and that is the fact that I’ve been hard on myself. Why is that so? Why do I give up on my comfortable seat for some XYZ person and accept the pain in my butt as my fate? Why did I sleep on the piece of a wood when I had the remainder of the bed available for me? Why do I make myself sweat and dehydrate when I am provided with an air-conditioner in my room? Why did I want my sister to be tough on me in this game we were to play, when I would always hit her back in all the fights which we had in real life scenario (apart from the game)?

Am I one of those people who’d like to constantly indulge in self-pity? Or did I do all of the above to gain attention of who-so-ever?! Do I actually like being in pain? Or is it that I value that smooth light-headed effect which comes after the pain -- and that acts as a reason for me to want to be in pain?
"There's a lot of fear connected with the inner journey because it penetrates our illusions. Taking the inner journey will lead you into some very shadowy places. You're going to learn things about yourself that you'll wish you didn't know. There are monsters in there—monsters you can't control—but trying to keep them hidden will only give them greater power."


Blogger Manish Kumar said...

I think only Zainab knows the correct answer. But seriously speaking If u do feel there is something u can't comprehend talk to a psychologist. He/She will help u find the real reason behind ur behaviour.

12:54 AM  
Blogger Keshi said...

This is deep and intense self-analysis. This is good Zainab. That means u r very well aware of who u r...even tho ur not sure why u did certain things the way u did them.

I reckon everyone should take a good LOOK at themselves like this once in awhile. It will make us BETTER ppl and will help us overcome our own puzzles. dun u think?


9:20 AM  
Blogger Sadaff said...

I am going to try to take a stab at it. I think that it has a lot to do with the culture that we are brought up in. We, as Pakistani women, are a part of societies that encourage modesty and humility(esp. among the girls). You think about others before you unless its a matter of the last mango, which just cant be compromised(bad humour, meh)Maybe, its that teaching that becomes very much a part of us. Either that or we are idiotic pushovers(or not:`P).

I can relate to your scenarios and can totally see mysellf responding the same way as you.

11:55 AM  
Blogger Rahul Bhatnagar said...

The answer eludes me. But I don't think that its bad in anyway if YOU want to do these thing. Its a good thing to make things easier for others but only as long as the 'niceness' comes naturally.

Ohh and about the fan-switching-off I do that whenever I argue with my parents, (even when its 44 degrees!) and from now on, I bet I'm going to self evaluate every single time.

10:40 PM  
Blogger Gigi said...

In this world where there is a rarity to find a genuinely nice and helping person, you seem to be one of those rare people.Hats off to you.

10:47 PM  
Blogger deluded said...

thats very kind.

you are. very kind.

10:52 PM  
Blogger AD said...

for a 20 year old you rocked me outta my skin!

My God the indepth analysis!

1:09 AM  
Blogger Adisha said...

I'm a little confused here, since I'm reading this After the latest post where you say you have two younger sisters and in this post you say you had an elder sister and a brother ???

As far as the self analysis goes, I think you're just being a little paranoid. Self analysis is fine but there's nothing very unusual in any of the things you have mentioned. Like you've accepted thaty ou feel like you've created barriers for yourself. So you basically need to jsut let go of your fears and believe in your being more !!!

If you know you are being, just don't be too hard on yourself. After all, you have nothing to prove to anyone really ... except yourself !! And sacrifices that you make for others, just alk about what a strong person you can be and are !!

9:43 AM  
Blogger The Survivor said...


Don't analyze anything. As long as the past does not haunts you, there is no point in analyzing anything.

Let yourself free and don't try to control anything and slowly you will get the answers that you were looking for.

God Bless You

5:43 PM  
Blogger Zainab Dhanji said...

Guys, thanks alot, for your time and enrgy to understand and decode my complicated self. Thank you all... really.. to manish for thinking i need CLINICAL HELP lol (jk) to keshi, rahul, gigi, AD, Deluded, adisha, survior and sadaf and I think you are right sadaf, about the culture thingee, but its soo subtle that you dont even realize its there, affecting you subconcious. Good to have someone from the same cultural setting i'd say =)

@Adisha: Hey sori for confusing u.. i have an elder sisters whose married and lives far far away in a country miles apart from my own. Thn i have an elder brother, then myself and then comes the my twlv yr old cute twin sisters =) Thanks alot tho, your words mean alot to me.. i dont know why tho, you seem to understand it all too perfectly. I appreciate it, really =)

1:50 AM  

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