Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Ymn turned 33

My friend Ymn will be 33 in January 23rd and surprisingly, she removed her birthday from Facebook and shared her blogpost instead. As a single woman who turned 33 in August, who's in love with every wrinkle in her face, and who's living in a society where everyone but her, is worried because she didn't get married yet, I was very touched by the post because it reflects who I am, what I think and what I exactly feel.

Here's Ymn's Birthday Post. Too powerful not to be shared on my own blog.
Happy Birthday my beautiful friend!

"I wanted to publish this post on my birthday, but I figured I’d be too busy replying to Facebook birthday wishes from “friends” who got notified to celebrate it with me by wishing me a “Happy birthday”! On second thoughts, I might remove my birthday from Facebook anyway!

I’ll be 33 in a few days and I’ve never been at ease with my age or myself like I am now. I don’t hate my body anymore, I’ve accepted all my curves & how much I weigh and figured that weight, just like age, is just a number! This doesn’t mean that I won’t be eating healthy any more, but wouldn’t freak out on the extra kilos I might put on…

I’m witnessing the birth of facial wrinkles, especially on the sides of my eyes but that’s OK! In fact I’m thankful I haven’t grown any between my eyes, because as I age, I’ll not grow into that forever angry face due to those nasty lines on the front. I’d hate to be stuck in that look! I have always loved dimples and I like to think that I’ve been granted one in my thirties. I can see it when I smile, a tiny one on my right cheek… Could it be another wrinkle claiming its right to appear? who cares?  It’s just a point of view anyway :)

I have tricked my hair and dyed it many times over the years way before any gray hairs appear. In fact I haven’t seen any till now, pretty smart eh? I still like to take weird poses when having my photograph taken, I would love to race with anyone who challenges me to, even though I’ve never won any race my whole life but it makes me genuinely happy to grasp for breath and feel that ache in my stomach and knees, to hear my heartbeats in my throat! I would still draw on foggy windows then say it wasn’t me. I don’t think I would ever stop watching cartoon animations and will always get emotional and involved with the characters and would never be ashamed of weeping in public…

I’m still single, but that’s OK! And my message here is to all the ones who love me and care about me: Getting married is not my biggest of worries. It’s no fun ride, at least that’s not how I view it. I’m not against it but I still have the same high standards I’ve always had and time won’t bend that or break it! It’s annoying and  it hurts to see people you love hurling around to make sure you get married. I will not get married to an old guy just because I’m not in my twenties anymore and no I can’t accept someone who is divorced with four kids for marriage’s sake! I’m an independent working woman, I don’t need to throw away all my social life accomplishments or compromise anything that I’ve achieved just to please a potential husband. If I ever get married, it should be because I want to not because that’s the best thing I can get due to my age! Or because I must have a baby of my own!

Sentences like, what’s wrong? Or why are the guys so blind? Or why are you so picky? are really annoying and sometimes hurtful… I understand you want me to be happy but who said happiness is only achieved through marriage? Who said I’m not happy? I’d rather fall in love than have kids or raise someone else’s kids!

I’m single not incomplete dear society, a woman can be unmarried and happy, those two things are not related. You want me to be happy? Offer me a flight to India or Uzbekistan! Teach me a few tricks in photography! Would you go skydiving with me? I would really love to ride a Harley Davidson! Take away all the smart phones and communicate with me! I want to watch a musical! Fall in love and be loved back!"

Beautiful photos taken by Ymn

Thursday, December 4, 2014

My phone-less week

It was an exciting yet anxious November morning during the Beirut Marathon. I had forgotten to buy an armband so I had to keep my phone with me while running for 10 Km straight for the first time.

It took me more than one hour of running where I tried to forget about the shooting pain in my legs and focus on the finish line.

WOW!! The finish line beckoned. “Yes,” I thought to myself. “I did it… but with a damaged phone."

The result, obviously, was a phone-less Sunday afternoon.

The next day I started immediately working on fixing my six months old lovely iPhone. To cut the story short, my iPhone 5S can't be fixed. My only options were to either exchange it through Apple representatives in Lebanon with an extra $500 or buy a new one. And, both were impossible before two weeks. That's another two long and excruciating days without a phone.

But to tell you the truth, despite the sadness I had for losing a not very old phone, I started enjoying my new phone-less life.

And here's my story with this world called "Digital".
I am addicted to the digital world, there’s no denying it. I prefer digital reading. I spend approximately 30 minutes a day reading interesting articles and news.
I love Facebook and I do share daily up to 3 public posts that reflect me, what I do, what I love and how I think. I also, hit so many times that like button whenever I scan quickly the news feed.
Those who know me very well, know that I am a Google addict. Well, I guess I am! My Gmail is open round the clock, my Gmail social tab is bombarded everyday by more than 100 emails from people and pages I am following on Google+, and for me, Google news don’t count for my daily 30 minutes of reading. They’re a totally different story.

All these can be accessible through a smartphone or a desktop. Notifications everywhere.
And, don't forget the awesome WhatsApp!!

Recently, I became more paperless: my important files are always on Google Drive; Contacts, Notes, Events, Reminders are either on my phone, my Gmail or my Outlook.

All this is quite good, believe me. It keeps you updated and gives you the knowledge you need for your career and self-development. It opens you to the world. But, on the other side, it can seriously give you headaches and stress.

Sometimes, you feel like you want to switch off all devices and just look around you and forget about notifications. And, I do it from time to time. I do what I call a Digital Detox which is 2 days or 3 without 3G and any kind of social media. People can reach me only by calling me. It's a needed medicine for all the stress you feel and caused by social media and WhatsApp.

Well, here I am without a phone. No calls, no 3G. So why not benefiting from it? Why not enjoying it? From November 10 till November 17 I lived, or should I say survived, without a phone.

A typical day during my phone-less week went as follows:
“The first thing I see in the morning when I wake up, my room and not my phone screen; I dress up without WhatsApp distraction; I drive without notification temptations; I work without looking every minute on my phone; I read my book more quickly; I watch TV; I enjoy my lunch break; I look around; I give more attention to my surrounding; I focus.”

I simply enjoyed life.

Now I have a temporary phone and guess what? I am not taking care of it. I am not giving it the attention I gave to my old ones. I am having a life and giving my phone some space during the day.

Give yours a break and enjoy life.