a letter   hurreya a. nasser


Dear Laura:

Ooooh. I'm in a really bizarre place this morning, at this moment. It's taking a lot of faith or something to write, right now. Or, it's just darn sleepiness or sickness. I don't know. My eyes just popped open this morning--my body feeling heavy with the weight of this period or whatever is happening. My blood is flowing, sort of. My head is spinning, sort of. I woke up wanting to write to you about this God piece that started "pouring" out of me several weeks ago. And, I was troubled about it last night/yesterday, because I really wanted to work on it, and get something to you for your very special edition of bint el nas. I looked at what I had written a few weeks ago, for the very first time, last night. And, I remembered how profound it was, those few minutes when I had written down what I had written down, and I could connect a little bit with that moment, but, more than that, I was taken by how simple, how incomplete, how very little I had down in type than I had thought I had. Boy, this needs much more "work" than I had realized, I thought to myself. How's that going to happen?

I didn't know. I closed it up. I checked email, I went to bed. I woke up this morning, like I just started this message saying, all of a sudden, feeling really weird physically, and feeling compelled to write to you, now. And, I KNEW what I had to write was that I was not done with whatever it is that I wanted to say, but that I was still going to send it to you, and ask you to just know that I had that moment, but that I'm a long way from done in having "it" figured out. And to ask you to just know it, and hold it, and hold me. And, that maybe I'd get back to it (the writing), maybe I wouldn't, but that, for now, as incomplete as it was, that was it.

But that made me feel really sad, and really weak, frankly. Because it's soooooooo not the beautiful, to the point, wrap it up "piece" that I thought it was going to be and that, a few weeks ago, I felt so ready to write.

A few weeks ago. It was a Saturday morning. It was the Saturday morning before that one Mango in September when we all met there. Now that I think about it (please bear with me, I'm mentally stuck on my period and my erratic cycle, right now), it was right around when my period SHOULD have come. That was more than a few weeks ago, that was about six weeks ago (I just looked at my calendar and counted). I'm not sure what was going on with me, but I was struggling that morning with some feelings that I couldn't figure out. I was sitting at my kitchen table. I think I was eating. Cereal, I think. And I just remember feeling all this angst and suspicion and anger and confusion and resentment, and all these things. Again, I'm not sure what about. But, I was stumped. And, I know that somewhere inside that, I found myself feeling lots of love. Lots of it. I was thinking about something about Dawn, and how she was pushing me around something. And, I was thinking about you, and how you had pushed me on something, too. The same thing? Were they connected? I don't remember. But, it was you two on my mind. And, then Huda came up for me. And, I remember just being inside of this moment of silence and feeling God so big and so deep, and I want to just keep saying big, big, big, big, cause it felt like God was with me in this way that was helping me make "sense" of my ten year mark. These ten years since that summer of 1990 when, for me, it felt like everything fell apart. And, I felt like in this really big way, it was coming back together. And, I felt this profound sense of being known and being seen through God's love which has come through the three of you and so many others. The ten years made sense.

I don't know what took me from my kitchen table to the computer, but I do remember that I resisted a little bit. I had homework to do. Lots of things to get done so that I could go to Mango and enjoy myself. But, I think that must have been around when you had put out your call for bint el nas, cause that call came to mind somewhere in all this. I had had no thought that I would contribute to it. It hadn't even occurred to me. But, sometime that morning, I was feeling like this was some kind of calling. That you, my dear, beloved, powerful, amazing, blessing- for-me-and-so-many-others, sister-friend Laura are working on bringing together these issues. And that it was my call to prayer. And, I could hear the athan in my head. Pray with Laura. Don't resist it. Go pray with Laura. That's what it was time for--nothing else. It was my desire to pray with you that took me to the computer, at that time.

And, I probably spent about 45 minutes in front of the screen. And, I remember feeling very powerful. And really clear. And really secure. And pure. And transparent. And simple. And, even when I knew I was not done, it didn't feel tortured. I felt like I just got enough "on paper." And, as incomplete as it was, I felt so utterly confident it would get done. It felt so good! I felt so good.

I feel humbled, now. I still feel like I will "finish" it. But, I'm not sure what that means or looks like. I don't know that it means I will finish writing what I started writing. Or, if something else will come up. I don't know. But, this morning, now, I feel like I have to let it go. And, it feels kind of horrifying. Honestly. I'm not being drama (well, ok, maybe just a little bit!), but there's a part of me that feels like I'm so bad, like I'm being such a disappointment, and a flake, and a liar cause I didn't finish it and make it neat and clear. And, once again, I'm not finishing what I said I would do. And maybe it wasn't all that powerful anyway. And, what's horrifying me, is that, I woke up this morning knowing that part of letting it go, right now, is literally, mailing to you, as is, these words that I started to write several weeks ago, that now feel so pale and incomplete. I'd rather hide them and whisper to myself promises that I will finish it and really shine and glow for you. But, that's my old way of doing things. Hiding until "perfection." And, I don't want to hide with you.

It's really not that much. And, it's not about or for bint el nas. It's just about me. This simple little piece of me for a few minutes one Saturday morning a few weeks ago when I thought that it was all coming together. And, it was. And, that was real, I know it. But, that mystery of the "completion", the wholeness, whatever, was something I FELT that morning, in prayer "with" you. But, not something I could "capture" in print.

Again, I want you to know, I feel sort of weak, and a bit silly sending you this, now. But, I also know it's right. I need to let it go, so that I can keep going with whatever's going on for me, right now.

I love you, and I thank you very much for calling me to pray. I am still praying.

Love, H.

haadis: discuss this issue with other bintelnas readers on the message board

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