Growing Up as an Emotional Person: My Most Embarrassing Story

I always felt either too much or nothing at all. Growing up I didn’t know how to have a good balance between things which were okay to be emotional about and things I should should let go. I always kept a diary to record everything. When I was 8 years old, my father snatched my diary while I was writing and he wasn’t too happy about what I wrote and he literally opened his mouth to express his shock and displeasure but I told him “It’s true isn’t it?” I always liked keeping a journal with me.

I had a diary since I could write. Therefore my father would always say “Why don’t you study English language in College?” I don’t like linguistics but I love creative writing. Although I felt when I follow so many rules of a language, it limits my flow of writing. I can’t write with my heart when in my mind, I know “This is incorrect.” I remember something that really touched me is what an author once said “Don’t focus on the grammatical rules because that is what the editor is for.”

Books were my escape. I used to read books in the shower pan because my Dad would be angry about me reading rather than sleeping on time. I would literally sit there and read. I remember when I was 12: my teacher snatched the book I was reading because I wasn’t concentrating in my Mathematics class.

The most embarrassing situation was when I was 9 years old and I had this pink Fulla notepad. I wrote there about a guy who I used to play with at the time and I tore the page 2; I crumbled it and threw it out of the kitchen window. The most unfortunate thing, it remained on the window stool. My father was like “What is that? Let me read that.” And I literally wanted to die of humiliation that day. I don’t exactly remember what I wrote but I remember to this day how it made me feel. I can still feel it. Hence, I would be open with my kids that they really wouldn’t be embarrassed to tell me anything. That day I came to realise writing about boys is a bad thing. I was stupid but that kid was rude and abusive. So I guess, I wasn’t that bad after all. I don’t think anything embarrassing that happened after that could beat that incident.

I think 2011 was when I moved to my first digital diary because I could just delete words with a tap. Then I kept a diary for 2012. 2013 is when I lost interest in writing. I started shutting down from everyone and I liked remaining out of everyone’s eyesight. I stopped reading. It was the most devastating year of my life. I hated myself and I was suffering from low self-esteem. I thought I was a plain loser. I would walk with my heads down because I was so ashamed of myself. The world devoured me that year. There were many reasons for it but I don’t have the courage to talk about them. I never liked giving an explanation of anything associated with me.

Looking back, I think the 15 year old managed it well without any wisdom or advice. In 2014 I had my ‘aha moment’, I changed completely and I gave 2015 the best of me. Nothing till now can top that year. I didn’t have any friends that year except the ones online. I was really happy with them and till to this day we keep in touch. The funny thing was when my parents thought I was making them up and they didn’t exist. Guess what? In 2016, I met one of them in real life because I moved closer to her. Sadly in 2017, she moved out of the country. This is Qadr, we accept it wholeheartedly. She was my first friend whose husband I saw in person and later, their child.

In 2017, my one piece of writing got me the third position in a talent competition in my college. I wish one day I can share with you and you would read without any pride or prejudice.

Fast forward 1 year and we are in 2018. I now know how not to let my feelings devour me. I am a stronger woman (although I believe 2012 me was the strongest). I am willing to learn: willing to try new things. I run away from arguments (although I participate in debates).

I would love to know how you have changed as a person over the years. Was there an aha moment in your life? How did you control your emotions as a child?


Is College For Me?

I really pushed myself to write this blog post because I am generally a very anxious person. I have been quite because I didn’t know how to react to so many people visiting this Blog. When I first started blogging, it was an escape from my mundane life. I was really passionate about Islam and I didn’t think the society I was brought up in was accepting and welcoming. I always thought my life is no ones business but soon people started commenting and I felt like when I wrote here, I was truly me. It was then called Blue Spirit Muslim and I later renamed it to S.J Wanders because I wanted it to be personal and someone who you can relate to.

I obviously am in College and that takes up most of my time because studying Early Childhood Education is a lot of work. I honestly wouldn’t do this course if I knew it required me to do practical things. I think I would be good with a book in the library. I am all about books but this field turned out to be something I truly feel passionate about. It wasn’t definitely something that was my goal growing up.

The truth is I never wanted go to College, I was more sort of a work person so I would do a lot of work for people for free and learn at my own pace. I didn’t prefer a rigid schedule or a curriculum that was limiting me to gain knowledge in other areas. However, it did work out for me Alhamdulillah.

Recently I completed a course in First Aid and Nutrition and I thought it was marvelous and I learned a lot that I couldn’t have learn in 3 hours College lectures. I volunteer often which makes me immensely happy because I can help people and meet folks who  I share similar interests with. So I have this mixed views of studying in an institution because there is so much I want to do and I just feel I am not able to because of the coursework and exams. Believe it or not, in 2 years this is the first time I am stress free: taking one day at a time. I really want to do a phD but fun fact I am already exhausted. I get super nervous for the next upcoming semester. I always prepare for the worst so when it happens I am like “Well, I imagined worse than this.”

9 Pure Souls and I

I have never written about them on the Blog so I feel like I need to express about them here. Last November, I was chosen to become a teacher for children aged 3-4 years old. I actually wanted to teach 2 years olds but my boss was like they are just going to bully me so she placed me in nursery 4. I was introduced to my first kid and his nickname is E. Now E is really adorable even when he cries and frowns like no joke. Allaahumma Baarik lahu. Most of my kids were Chinese with a minority of Malay. It took E two weeks to accept me in play. I still remember when he called me to play with him and that was one of my greatest moments because I finally was starting to make a place in his heart. One of the kids left early so it came down to 9 children. There were a handful. My job was to be a teacher and not a mother so I was very clear that I would never want to replace their mother. Therefore we would always talk about what their Daddy likes and what their Mommy likes. So I had AVR, Ran, Ayl, Way, Cell, Zaa, E, Hay and ET. I didn’t know you could love people equally but I love all of them differently because they have different characteristics and personalities. It is truly awe-inspiring to see them succeed at academics and non-academics areas at such a young age.

My last day of teaching AVR’s Mom said “Teacher Sumaiya, she always talks about you.” I stood like a statue because I was literally in tears and I did not want to cry in front of the children or anyone in the school. When I went inside, I was wiping tears and I realised children don’t know what is goodbye because 3-4 years olds are egocentric. Then on 16th March 2018 was my official last day when we went on a field trip and I was making sure they had their breakfast without spilling juice or food on their clothes because they didn’t bring additional clothes. That was one of my biggest concerns and one of the kids I told her “Come on lets go.” Then I noticed she opened her shoes while she sat in the canteen. So I had to make her wear the shoes and it clicked in my mind this is why my parents hate to travel with us. For the first time in my life, I felt the motherly duties because we were outside the school and it was a totally mind boggling experience. I wasn’t too sure if I want to be a mother so soon because my life goal until that day was to become a mother asap. It is alot of hassle to be travelling with kids and imagine if they are toddlers. Plus the toilets were not built child size so were the tables and chairs in the canteen and it really bothered me because the kids were having a hard time. I had to help them sit on the toilet seat and all the teachers did the same with the other kids. Ayl’s little sister came and she is amazing and adorable. Allaahumma baarik feeha. I just couldn’t get over the Mei Mei (little sister in Chinese).  Another reason my parents hate to travel with us is because we are big kids, we have alot of opinions and dislikes. Not really my parents would either travel with us or not at all. As a child our favourite spot to travel was Jeddah and obviously Makkah and Madinah are different because we are religiously connected to them. It reminded me of my childhood and I came to appreciate my parents alot more. I mean the amount of sacrifices they did for us, it is truly heartbreaking.

However, the bus was also not made for children, I wish I could turn everything into child size. Sometimes I had to stand up to make sure the children are sitting properly and are comfortable. The best thing is I didn’t fall on anyone in a moving bus: that would be the end of my career and worse it would be caught on camera.

On the other hand, I really enjoyed it Alhamdulillah. It was the best few months of my life and I spent with so many beautiful children. Basically, I didn’t eat them because obviously they are not edible and it is not professional to be kissing the kids all the time. We always hugged and we played hide and seek in the library. Yes, learning through play. I learned to spend my last day and my farewell day with them by not letting my emotions come in the way which was a huge lesson for me. You know sometimes we cannot enjoy the last moments with people or in a place because we are overcome my grief that we will be leaving forever, I didn’t let it affect me. I treated 16th March as any other day but I made sure I had lots of fun with them and let them know I am leaving for good. I told each one of them “I love you.” I expressed my love without sobbing and wrote good qualities about them.

So, here are some pictures to mark my last day with them. I hope to remember them forever because they were my first class who I taught in my life.

Thank you Teacher Den for the great experience and what you have taught me. Before I didn't want to teach English Language but you told me, it is one of my strengths. You have corrected me from the first week and you have been straight forward. I have never wanted to be a principal because of the ones I have seen but you have totally changed the definition of principal. You are the best principal I have ever met and you have formed a relationship with every child in your school and you even remember the number plates of all the students cars as well as your teacher. Miss J and I never thought we would be this fortunate and your passion towards teaching young learners is awe-inspiring. I have learned how to teach Montessori in creative ways from you and how to manipulate the lessons to suit the needs of children in the class. I have wanted to work in a diverse environment and you have provided just that. I have met the loves of my life here. You have also taught me how to be involved yet have an awareness of my surrounding. I am going to miss the children so much and the teachers. May Allaah bless them Aameen. The children are so precious. What a better way to end this journey than a field trip to a library. Hope you continue what you are doing and enjoy like you do because many people own schools but few people make a positive difference in the child's early years. I never wanted to be a teacher but after working with you I can say I am one. There is a long way to go for me in sha Allaah. #earlyyears #school #earlychildhoodeducation

A post shared by Teacher Sumaiya (@hastyteacher) on

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia from 2014-2015

I found some pictures of when I was once living in Riyadh and I almost forgot how much I explored Saudi Arabia back then.


If you are wondering why I am not a big of pigeons. This is why.


Fireworks on the 3rd night (2nd night in English Calendar) of Eid ul Adha. Enjoy the sparks of the fireworks falling. Location: King Abdul Aziz Park, Malaz, Riyadh, KSA


The play of water fountain which this park is known for. You could see the splashes of droplets on my camera lens. Forgive me for that. Location: King Abdulaziz Park, Malaz, Riyadh, KSA


That swimming pool though. Who wants to dive in? Location: Al Faisaliah Spa, Olaya,Riyadh, KSA


Sitting arrangements to enjoy the Eid stage show. Location: Al Masmak Fort, Dhira, Riyadh, KSA


On the morning of Eid ul Fitr 2014. Can you spot the honor guard parade for welcoming the Royal Family? They are wearing white uniform. Location: Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque, Dhira, Riyadh, KSA


The city lights from the top floor of al Faisaliah Tower. Location: Al Faisaliah Tower, Olaya, Riyadh, KSA


The inside of Al Faisaliah Spa by ESPA. Love the decor. Location: Al Faisaliah Spa, Riyadh, KSA


Location: Al Faisaliah Tower, Riyadh, KSA


SubhanAllaah the view! Location: Al Faisaliah Tower, Riyadh, KSA


A bee in Riyadh. Incase you are wondering how bees rest here. They sleep on our keyboard.


I believe taxidermy was done to these animals for study. Location: Prince Sultan Science Oasis, Diplomatic Quarter, Riyadh, KSA

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Prince Sultan Science Oasis. This is his museum. Due to weightlessness the body doesn’t stay on the ground in outer space.One thing that amazed me and my friends is that there was a picture of Prince Sultan praying in the spaceship when he was in space. His feet were fasten with belts so that they remain firm on the ground. Location: Prince Sultan Science Oasis, Diplomatic Quarter, Riyadh, KSA


Al Yamamah Resort, Riyadh

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The pens have been lifted and the ink has dried. Object- A Dawat to store ink. During ancient times the ink prepared from minerals and soot was stored in a heavy brass ink pot traditionally known as Dawat. Location- Al Maskmak Museum, Dhira, Riyadh


Object- A Pen case to store writing utensils in its end three cylindrical inkwells in various sizes. Location- Al Masmak Museum, Dhira, Riyadh


Place: Al Masmak Fort, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Announcement Regarding Missing Posts

I have decided that I will take off some of the articles as I need further clarifications on them. Therefore until my doubts are cleared and everything is resolved, I am sorry they won’t be available for the time being. It is sad that some of the posts had a high number of views but I have decided to take them off the site for a few good reasons.

True Story of a Mother Struggling to Remain Firm on Tawheed

I come from a Sufi family where a lot of bidah and shirk is present. Alhamdulillah Allah guided me to the straight path and Alhamdulillah Allahumma Baarik I got married to a Salafi .

I started to relearn my Deen correctly from the correct sources Alhamdulillah and had the company of my dear husband who Masha Allah tabarak Allah is of a strong emaan and he patiently and kindly helped me always.

I used to do an internship at the hospital before my marriage and hence have seen suffering people. I could never go inside the pediatric icu as I have always loved babies and I couldn’t see that . I would sit outside as my colleagues went in .I would look at the board where the babies names were written and feel so bad for the parents .

Allah blessed us with a baby boy after a year and a half of our marriage ,I named him Ismail to this day that memory makes me cry. I had chosen that name for my son since I was in 10th. Ismail was very dear ,my first baby I cared for him a lot. When he was 7 and a half months old he was admitted in the hospital because he got seizures the doctor said nothing to worry we can go home tomorrow morning . I was sitting in the ward in the night looking at my baby sleeping then a Muslim lady came up and asked me what was wrong and all she left me saying looking at Ismail that he is possessed you need to put a taweez (amulet) for him she said no Medicine will help ,he will get worse .At that point I just ignored her but slowly it was seeping in after all I was raised in ahime where all this was so strongly practiced . Ismail’s health got worse, he was in ICU now ,when I sat outside and saw my Ismail’s name on the board I broke down crying and then I thought does Ismail need a taweez am I being arrogant and pushing my baby to death?

This though kept becoming stronger and stronger. All I had to do was tell my mom and she would get it for me I had to hide it from my husband, all this kept playing in my mind. Ismail was sick for a month and it had been a month since we saw him play or smile. One night I saw my husband and Ismail sleeping and thought it’s enough Ismail has suffered enough I will call my mom now and get the taweez. I started to cry and cry and I thought of all the sacrifices I had made to be on the haqq how I had wished a life of emaan for my Ismail, I told myself then no NO I will not do it, if Ismail is destined to die he will die on Tawheed I will never do shirk never, I cried profusely that night asked for Allah’s forgiveness and slept in the morning my husband woke me up in excitement and said look at Ismail .Ismail was sitting up smiling at both of us ,I cried and cried and hugged him, from that day on his health got better and better. The doctors has suspected anything for my baby paralysis , coma, death etc.. Subhanallah my Allah didn’t want to take my baby  He Subhanawatala only wanted to cleanse me of the shirk and wanted to clean my heart Subhanallah. I could have bore see myself or my husband in pain but Ismail was to dear ya Ustaza.Today my Ismail is 12 years old and healthy Alhamdulillah and is doing hifz Alhamdulillah.Allah’s Qadar even when we see it as hurting us is only and only for are good.


Disclaimer: This is shared by an anonymous Salafi mother to student of knowledge Zaynab Al Kateb after the end of her Usul Ath Thalatha 2018 classes and the names have been changed to keep her privacy.


15 Things to Do Before You Get Married

Whether you are seeking marriage or you are happily single. Don’t despair seeing all the married couples online. You could make use of this time to get closer to Allaah because after nikkah you will have needs to cater to. All the married sisters I have spoken are super busy with newborns, chores and guests etc.

              1. First and foremost study Aqeedah. You could join a study circle or listen to the explanation of Usool Ath Thalatha in recordings of lectures. You can email me for sisters only study circle taught by student of knowledge,  Zaynab Al Kateb.

        2.Learn how the Prophet Muhammad sall Allaahu alayhi wa sallam prayed by reading How the Prophet ﷺPrayed by Shaykh Abdul-Aziz bin Abdulllah bin Baz.

3.Memorise Quran: So below I will give you some authentic links to help you while memorising the words of our Lord.

4. Try to perfect your hijab if you haven’t already. Of course some sisters say that they will start wearing the veil/hijab after marriage but a man who has Taqwa would want to marry a woman who has Taqwa. You can’t expect to change overnight after your nikkah. You will be the same person after marriage as you are now except that now your husband will have the upper hand and will be your protector. And the question is will you be wearing the hijab because of your husband or you will be wearing it to follow the commands of Allaah? Because I have met sisters and one particularly whose husband died and the niqab and the hijab SubhanAllaah she left it all. It is very important that you don’t delay to follow the commands of Allaah because youth do die unmarried. And if there is Emaan in your heart it will reflect on your outer appearance. Two knowledgeable readings are:

The Conditions for the Proper Hijaab – Shaykh Zayd Al-Madkhalee

The Jilbaab and what Garments can Substitute It – Shaykh al-Albaani

5. Spend lots and lots of time with your family specially with your parents. Listen to them. Be patient with them if they are not Salafi.

6. Learn how to cook. It is very important that you know even if you don’t need it.

7. Minimise your contact with non-maharim (plurah of mahram). No Salafi righteous man would want to know that his wife interacts with brothers randomly. If you know a Sheikh or a student of knowledge you can ask questions but also respect the timezone and don’t be persistent if they are not replying. It applies to both genders but I have spoken to righteous sisters and a key to a successful marriage is to keep it low key among non Maharim. If you are doing it he will do it and if he does it you will do it. You will not like a husband who is always interested in your friend’s whereabouts.  Imagine marrying a man and finding out that most of the sisters on social media already know him ”personally”. There is something called self-restraint. That quality is very important.

8. Study Arabic Language. You can self-teach yourself.

9. If you have any issue such as anger issues you need to take control of it. Speak less. Listen more. During an argument leave if you fear you will utter anything that will displease Allaah.

10. Wake up for tahajjud. Increase in your nawafil prayers.

11. Fast on the white days of the lunar month and Mondays and Thursdays. After marriage for recommended fasts you have to ask your husband’s permission.

12. Spend less. Minimise your expenditure. Be generous when helping out those in need.

13. Learn manners and how to effectively resolve conflicts. You can read this book Upright Moral Character by Shaykh Muhammad Saalih Uthaymeen. 

14. Do your chores rather than depending on your family.

15. Lastly, read this book 20 Pieces Advice to my sister before her Marriage by Sheikh Badr bin Ali Al-Utaybee. I have read it a couple of times because the keys to a successful marriage: this book has it all.

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