Friday, 31 October 2014

Dear October // Mini Series #4

Dear October,

The dust settled in distinct patterns and the glorious autumnal shades danced around me in a blur of daydreams. October you have proven to be placid, reflective and above all, merciful. You held my hand as I began to walk properly for the first time after my operation, you showed me patience as I expressed my anger towards the world and all its injustice on the days when the exterior was perfect but the inside was wrong. Though it hasn’t been easy and my rollercoaster life continues to surprise me with its unpredictability, I am content.

I saw Ed Sheeran this month and the utter euphoria bathed me as I danced with flailing arms. I received my first A grade in a brand new subject that I was constantly told I wouldn’t do well in. I realised this month that I am in control and only I can change the unchangeable if I persist.

I am no longer ‘chewing wildflowers to numb the pain’, instead I am fighting, clawing, ripping at every chance I get. When darkness bestowed itself upon me and looming shadows took control I seeked light. Perhaps just a flicker but I battled on and fought my enemies, even if my enemies were what stared back at me in the mirror.

I don’t know October. You have been what some people may call monotonous, repetitious, nothing but a mere filler in the twelve months of 2014. But with Halloween lurking and Christmas approaching I know this is a sign. A signal sent to tell me to slow down and listen to my body screaming out for the slumber it desperately desires.

Source: Nabsticle

I was a foolish mess some nights, a crying heap curled up in my bed at 2am but there was an odd sense of beauty in that. The lamp post lights seeped through my blinds as I questioned my existence and whether I, a miniscule grain of sand in this captivating world, was actually making a difference. I wondered how someone as ordinary as me could contribute to the bigger picture. I wondered whether I was living or just existing.

And after thinking it through I whispered to myself:

“Shut up Nabeela, you do matter.”

After some reassurance and hastily wiping away tears, I switched off and fell into a state of satisfied unconsciousness. And when tomorrow arrived the vicious cycle repeated. Life really is a crazy whimsical journey isn’t it?

You haven’t done a great deal to be honest October. You’ve just carried me along into November but I thank you. You have shown me the inevitable death of life but also the rebirth of me as a young woman; and I’m finally shedding off the dead weight and beginning to blossom into the remarkable human I’ve always craved to be.

Yours faithfully,

If you want to check out my ‘Dear September’ post you can find it here.

‘Chewing wildflowers to numb the pain’ is in quote marks because it’s a lyric from Among the Wildflowers by The Hotelier.

How was October for you?

Monday, 27 October 2014

My Blogging Journey

Source: Nabsticle

It was Saturday night, I was lying in bed (because that’s my idea of a wild Saturday night…) and all of a sudden an uplifting feeling of joy, gratitude and blessedness swept over my body and it was as if everything was perfect in the world. It was one of those ‘my life is amazing and I feel so blessed’ kind of moments.

For this I have blogging to thank. This special sense of euphoria brought tears to my eyes as I realised how lucky I really am. The opportunities and feeling of unity that has come from starting a blog is unbelievable. It was the best decision I ever made.

Let’s start from the beginning. Mid February of 2014 I took the nerve-wracking leap of creating this little space on the internet. Just an outlet. A creation to call my own and share my thoughts and musings of the rollercoaster I call life. Eight or so months later and boy am I proud of myself.

So what has blogging taught me?

       How large the blogging community is. Before blogging I had no idea what Bloglovin’ was and how many people actually owned a blog. Seeing people follow their dreams and contain so much passion is truly inspiring. I mean why wouldn’t you want to consume yourself with generous people with sky-high ambitions?

      - I’ve grown as a person and I’ve benefitted in the most incredible of ways. I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone. I’ve opened up to strangers. And you know what? That’s all I could ever ask for.

      - I feel like I’ve embedded myself into this whole other world. I’m like a jigsaw piece that has finally clicked with the rest and I’ve finally found my place as if this is where I’ve always belonged. This is my creation and I couldn’t be more proud.

I recently lost all of my followers which was a setback but I know that every setback is a lesson to be learnt. I’ve shocked myself by carrying on for so long but who would’ve thought that a blog could bring so much elation and hope?

I’ve discovered the most wonderful blogs created by the most talented people I’ve ever known. They are what make this community so beautiful. I couldn’t put everyone’s down but here are just a few that I adore. They’ve inspired me in more ways than they will ever realise so I wanted to thank them and give something back.

I’ve raved about this fantastically creative blog before but I can’t help but fall in love with every post. Katie has improved my own writing without even realising and motivated me to live each day more remarkably than the last. Her words matter and I just hope one day my writing could be nearly as profound as hers.

Sylwia is so lovely and has always got something meaningful to say. There’s a real sense of honesty that emanates from the words she writes. She really deserves more credence for her blog as her personality really shines through which is sometimes a rarity with many blogs out there.

Where should I begin? Lauryn has such a mature and unique writing style. I remember reading one of her brilliant posts for the first time and feeling mesmerized. So captivating and beautiful; I can’t rave about her blog enough. Her wise and thoughtful words accompanied with her lovely personality really makes her blog something special.

Before this becomes an essay I’ll round off this post with a huge thank you and a heart-warming computer hug. You guys are the best. I feel like this exhilarating hobby of mine is only going to improve as the days tick by and I’m so glad that I ventured out on this exceptional journey.

Friday, 24 October 2014

What Does the Term ‘Hipster’ Mean to You?

I wasn’t 100% sure if I would be able to articulate my words in a constructive way so that it would make sense to anyone which is why I’ve been putting this post off for quite some time but I decided to do it anyway because it’s something that has really got me thinking.

Hipster:  Someone who is very influenced by the most recent ideas and fashions.

This definition was found in the trustworthy Cambridge dictionary and I don’t disagree with it whatsoever however I strongly believe that there is more to it. When you hear the word ‘hipster’ a certain image pops into your head.

Perhaps something like this:

Source: here

Or maybe this:

Source: here

Ever since the term ‘hipster’ surfaced the internet and became a legitimate label in society I’ve never really been able to fully fathom exactly what it is. What is it exactly about someone that makes them a hipster? Okay so here’s some food for thought that may confuse you but please bear with me.

When this idea of a hipster first came to my attention I had originally thought that it simply meant someone who goes against the norm and dominant ideology and is different. But apparently it now means someone who is mainstream and follows everyone else around them. Perhaps I was wrong about it meaning you’re a bit of a black sheep however how did being a hipster – and supposedly original – become mainstream because everyone is now trying too hard to be different? I apologise if that didn’t make any sense but it kind of does to me… I emphasise the ‘kind of’.

My concept in life has always been that if I like something I like it. I’ve never thought about what other people may potentially label me as if I listen to a certain genre of music or buy a specific brand of clothing. Yes it’s great to be unique and set your own trends, be a leader not a follower, but what if you genuinely like the latest fashion trend? Are you going to restrain yourself from buying a snapback or an Arctic Monkeys t-shirt because you don’t want to be seen as ‘that type of person’? One of my many annoyances is when I see people scared to buy something or even like something  in case they’re labelled for it and to me that’s plain wrong. You like whatever you want to like, its part of who you are and can’t be changed.

Now time to discuss the influences, the triggers that have caused this futile problem in the first place. We know that TV, the internet and other people all have a role in this but I’m going to just talk about one specific influence: Tumblr.

There’s no denying it, Tumblr is a wonderful site. A great platform that can inspire and help you connect to like-minded people. We are all aware of the ‘hipster blogs’ and the typical photos you will find there. And it can honestly get really frustrating when you constantly see the same photos down your dashboard. But the point I’m trying to make is: what is so wrong with that? Maybe they actually like those photos and are expressing their personality through them? Then again they could also be reblogging those specific photos because they’re a guaranteed success aka they know for a fact that people will approve because it’s what the majority of blogs consist of.

Why is being a hipster a bad thing?

Is it just a stereotype or just a phase that will soon blow over?

If I like the Arctic Monkeys or vintage clothing does that make me a hipster?

For example, the well-known book and now film by John Green The Fault in our Stars is now considered hipster. Why? It wasn’t when it first got published so just because it is now so talked about people are avoiding it only to not be considered a hipster. Which is pretty sad for people who read the book when it first came out and genuinely connected with the story and thoroughly enjoyed it. But then again now that so many people are talking about it the book is being spread worldwide and inspiring thousands of people; isn’t that a good thing?

Personally I love indie music and vintage clothing however I also adore various other trends. Unfortunately society will always have its fixations and its influences on clothing, music etc. It will always try and tell you what’s right and wrong, what’s considered acceptable but that doesn’t mean you have to obey the rules.

It’s crazy how times have changed. Just thinking about what the latest trend will be in ten years’ time blows my mind. People didn’t worry about any of this before so what is making us worry now? Be whoever you want to be. Don’t live in fear of being put under an umbrella that will define you. I can guarantee that these stereotypes and labels won’t matter in the long run.

“I don't fit into any stereotypes. And I like myself that way.” ― C. JoyBell C.

Source: here

Once again I apologise for this ramble and unorganised stream of thoughts but it really is something to think about especially as it’s so relevant to teenagers and society. As you can probably tell I don’t really have a specific opinion on the topic and I’ve left it up in the air for discussion as I’m still not quite sure what to make of it myself. I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic so please comment or even tweet me.

How would you describe a hipster? What does it mean to you?

Monday, 20 October 2014

10 Reasons Why Your Life is Beautiful

Source: Nabsticle

1. You have the opportunity to be whoever you want to be. If you want to be an actor/actress, a business entrepreneur or even a cleaner, you go be that person because you can. The possibilities are infinite if you choose to embrace them and work hard to reach your goals.

2. There isn’t always a black and white logic behind everything. There are always going to be the hazy grey parts that we don’t fully understand but that’s okay. These confusing parts of life make us think and question which is truly wonderful because only then can mankind progress.

3. We all have someone out there who cares. Whether it be family, friends, people you talk to online or even a pet. It may not seem it at times and there will be moments when you think ‘what is the point anymore?’ but there is a point and you have to believe it to sincerely feel it.

4. A good smooth pen that allows you to write well, fresh clean sheets or even an indulging cup of tea. These are all extremely small things but can make your day just that little bit brighter. Cherish them.

5. The future holds so much mystery and urges us to keep going and hold on for one more day. It’s unpredictable, exciting and intense. Who would have thought the unknown could be so fascinating?

6. At times it can seem like everyone is out to humiliate you or cause you pain. But your life can be turned upside down in a matter of seconds to unveil the most beautiful gems. Live for those hidden miracles; you never know when they can arise.

7. Your life allows you to make mistakes but also gives you the chance to learn from them. It teaches you the lessons that school never did and for that we should be grateful.

8. There is so much art, music, books, and places to visit. These incredible platforms are brilliant ways of communicating a message and meeting like-minded people. Go out there and consume yourself in these experiences, its crazy how much the world has to offer.

9. The ability to educate yourself is endless. There will never be a time when there are no resources to fuel your mind and soul with passion, faith and hope. Bounce ideas off others, start a discussion or participate in debates – there’s always something new to learn.

10. You’re alive. The fact that you’ve made it this far is an achievement. You are a miracle. Embrace it with open arms and an open mind. Take a long deep breath and inhale the sweet scents that surround you so that life, joy and adventure pulsate through your veins.

Hope you have a wonderful week!

Friday, 17 October 2014

A Touch of Nostalgia

Photo credit: here & modified by Nabsticle

It’s simply impossible to conjure up a single word that can describe the past sixteen years of my existence. A sudden mind-boggling thought bestowed itself upon me recently, something that utterly astounded me, and it’s this little thing called ‘change.’

I recall various chunks of my childhood whereas some moments have completely vanished into nothing but distant trickles of fragmented events. I remember the time when my brother and I hurriedly scoffed our dinner so that we could play outside with our friends and the long toilsome weeks we spent trying our utmost hardest to persuade our mum to invest in the addictive Tamagotchis. (I’d still play them if I could to be honest…) The time when we started our very own Writing Club where we wrote stories and attempted to make our own Pok√©mon characters… Should I just stop before I utterly mutilate my dignity?

It baffles me to think that my brother is soon going to be deciding on which University is right for him and constructing a carefully thought out career plan when around ten years ago our only worries were trying to decide which Nintendo DS game to play next. And what catastrophic craziness will happen when I move out? All of these pressurising decisions to make and obstacles to overcome are becoming much more real quicker than we originally expected and it honestly frightens me.

Why is it that whenever When You’re Gone by Avril Lavigne starts playing I get a warm tingling feeling or when I watch Harry Potter a small smile appears on my face because I remember paying for the cinema ticket to experience the magical journey for the first time all those years ago?

I remember a time when becoming a teacher would be a dream come true. Then later on a medical consultant, (that was until I realised how terrible I am at Science) and then even a psychologist came to mind. I can’t even begin to explain how much has changed, how much myself and my family have grown and the hardships we’ve had to plough through to get to the position that we are in today. The friendships that have fizzled away like a fizzy drink deflating into nothing but sugar and water and the phases I have gone through have all been vaporised into memories and lessons to be learned.

Nostalgia: A sentimental longing or wistful affection for a period in the past.

Reading Best Friends by Jaqueline Wilson, The Witches by Roald Dahl and the Goosebumps series by R.L Stine all rekindle heart-warming feelings because I remember being so happy reading those books. It’s crazy to think that those books are what got me into reading in the first place. Just think how all these small stages of your past have created this one beautiful human being who possesses different hobbies and personality traits along with various self-detrimental flaws.

Nostalgia is a funny thing; it fills our hearts with joy and longing for those good times to return because things can change as quickly as the weather and they soon become dismissive in our minds. I don’t want to forget yet simultaneously I don’t want to let it become a barrier to the future; there are a million more memories to make, friends to gain and love to share. As a teenager I want to enshrine these precious moments I have with my family and friends because once they’re gone they’re gone for good and there’s no chance of retrieving them.

When my brother moves out, my sister’s pick their A Level subjects and I start my first ever job it’s going to be tough. That nostalgic feeling is immensely gratifying but there’s an even more promising future right at our fingertips. Don’t be scared because change is good but never forget your past – they were the foundations that you have now built on brick by brick over the years that make you an individual.

“What seems real one moment is fiction the next and gone out of existence the moment after that. Nostalgia is the greatest enemy of truth and change our only constancy.” – David Budbill

Monday, 13 October 2014

A Ticket to a Million Opportunities

“A child ticket to Oxford Street please?” I asked, my hands trembling with the rebellious guilt running wild through my veins. Will my friends and I make it back in the nick of time for the theatre production at The Old Vic theatre? A part of me thrived for the adventure, the whimsical thrill, the enigma of what we may discover but there was always that niggling worry in the pit of my stomach, the fear of getting lost in a city I’d never really explored before.

“Here you go, one child ticket.” The ticket man handed me the pale pink piece of card that will soon be whisking me away. Before I could grab the chance to change anyone’s mind I was stepping onto the underground and about to delve into the eccentric city of London for the first time with friends I had only made a week ago. And at that very moment I thought to myself screw it, what’s the worst that could happen?

After frantically running around Waterloo Station (I swear I must have lost a good few pounds) we finally hopped onto the right tube. I sighed with relief whilst constantly questioning why we were doing this. Around ten minutes later the five of us got off (thankfully at the right stop) and were about to peruse the stupendous shops that were on offer, feeling an overwhelming sense of daring euphoria.

It was truly magical. The glittering lights, the roaring rush of busy crowds and the sublime feeling of a different world dancing around me, even the heavy downpour that washed the pavements with its pretty raindrops filled my nostrils with that refreshing aroma that simply couldn’t be replicated. I instantly spotted the traditional flaming transport that roamed the city, carrying people to various places. It was even better than I ever imagined.

Source: me

We only had time to browse two shops but I cherished every second of it. How was I with people I barely knew but was on an exciting adventure with? The unbelievable madness of it was terrifying and intense but exhilarating all the same. I checked my watch and to my despair we were forced to cut the experience short and head back. I didn’t buy anything and we barely touched the first section of a shop but I know l will always remember the day.

We arrived back to our teacher who was oddly okay about our disobedience and hurried us into the theatre where Electra was about to commence. Thinking back I don’t even remember the play and not because it was mundane but because of the momentous time we had earlier on in the day. How could a single ticket, a mere bit of card, initiate so much elation and spirit?

On the hilarious journey home various thoughts rang through my mind and I realised something; these are the moments you live for. Being obedient is great but a little rebellion is even greater. This one ticket made me realise that I want to get out there, to visit extraordinary places and consume myself with the company of people with different ideologies to mine in the hope of expanding my knowledge. And so I made a vow that very same day: To stop being so damn scared of taking risks and to make spontaneous plans because it’s right there at the tip of my fingertips, I just need to take the plunge.

The opportunities are endless. It’s mind blowing to think of all the incredible things that we are missing because of school, money and fear. Grab a ticket and go for it, there’s no time like the present right?

Your TV/computer screen is only a microscopic view into the wonders of the outside world…

Where will you be buying a ticket to next?

Friday, 10 October 2014

Which Hogwarts House Are You In?

Source: here
Harry Potter is just one of those things isn’t it? It gives you a sense of heart-warming nostalgia and makes you reminisce your distant childhood filled with rainbows, ponies and smiles, when all was perfect in the world. Whilst I’m still gutted for not receiving my Hogwarts acceptance letter from McGonagall I’ve realised that normal schools – or should I say Muggle schools – have something in common with the spellbinding school of magic.

On entrance to the school you are sorted into one of four houses; Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff. And if you think about it it’s a bit like that in school. You’re either popular, nerdy, punk etc. But isn’t that who people perceive you to be and not who you truly are?

The good old sorting hat used its powers and positioned me into Slytherin after taking the test on Pottermore. Yet I always imagined myself as a Ravenclaw. Yes I agree that I’m pretty determined and ambitious like the characteristics of a Slytherin but I’d also like to think I’m creative and original like a wise Ravenclaw. Do these houses overlap? And then it hit me, I can slot myself into every single one of these houses.

I can be daring and courageous but also loyal and kind. It forced me to open my mind and think to myself, can we have more than one personality? And the answer is yes. Of course we can. We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t.

Just like the fearless protagonists Harry, Ron and Hermione we all have different qualities that make us the people we are. Harry had some characteristics of a Slytherin and Hermione also obtained some qualities of a Ravenclaw. It’s sad to think that people will label you to just one quality that you have. And it’s even sadder when the root of the problem is school and society.

Go and join different houses, different groups and different cliques because you can be whoever you want to be – you have the power to choose which house(s) you belong to. It’s cheesy but so true.

This was just a quick little thought I wanted to talk about that had been niggling in the back of my mind for quite some time. You may have noticed that I’ve changed my name on here and because of this I’ve lost all my followers which is gutting and pretty unfortunate. It would be great if you could follow me back if you were before, thanks so much to everyone who does follow me!

Right I’m off to listen to the Harry Potter soundtrack because that is as wild as my Friday night will get…

Which Hogwarts house(s) are you in?

Monday, 6 October 2014

Welcome to Nabsticle! (+ Update)

Sometimes a change is required, and I feel like now is the right time. I don’t think I’ve ever shared this on my little corner on the internet but ‘ridawkward-and-hyperbubbly’ originated from a stomach-churning lesson where my laughter couldn’t be contained. It was in a History lesson with a good friend of mine where these two words gave birth. Ridawkward: ridiculous and awkward, hyperbubbly: hyperbole and bubbly. I know, my friends and I are extremely strange for combining words but we did ha ha ha… don’t judge us.

These words stuck out to me and sounded great together and were very unique. I loved it. Despite my love for this name I figured that it had no reference to me whatsoever. And that’s when ‘Nabsticle’ popped into my head. It’s short, sweet, quirky and above all it includes the first three letters of my name. This took a lot of thought and I was hesitant but I like it.

I also want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has read, commented and followed my crazy little blog. I honestly didn’t imagine it getting this far. You’ve all been so lovely and inspire me to keep going; if I could give you all a big hug I would.

What I’ve been up to lately:

If you have read my ‘Dear September’ post you will know that this past month has been an arduous one to say the least but thankfully I returned back to college last week and I’m loving every second of it. (Apart from the early mornings, a tonne of homework and limping around campus…)

On Wednesday I will be off to London to watch a theatre production by the name of Electra with college. Being excited is definitely an understatement! Let me know if you’d like to see a blog post on it.

I’ve decided to have a bit of structure to my blog so I’m now going to be posting on Mondays and Fridays as it’s most convenient in terms of my college timetable. Additionally I’m focusing a lot more on my content and what I’m putting out there, I have lots of posts planned which I’m ardent to show you – keep an eye out for those!


What have you been up to lately? What do you think of the new name?

Friday, 3 October 2014

Interesting People

Credit: Photo from ashbazulfiqar's Instagram

Is it normal to be utterly captivated and inspired by a complete stranger?

The apprehensive swarm of newcomers entered the college for the first time, welcomed into their new life for the next two years. The pleasant beams of sunlight rained down on us, softly kissing us all with its beguiling rays. I watched from the side-lines as the room gradually began to fill; some with fiery red hair and revealing attire who were bursting at the seams with confidence and some with band t-shirts and dark eyeliner that painted a personality so vivid and stereotypical.

They took a snap of our glum and confused faces for our ID cards as quick as possible making us mere numbers flooded into a system, rather than bright individual sparks shining in a variety of potential angles. Blocking out the eerie silence and polite small talk I sat down in a chair and listened intently to the important-looking woman standing at the front.

She was too predictable and easy to deduct it almost made me laugh. Pristine navy blue suit: Unmarried, no children and likes to take care of her appearance. Raised chin and pushes out her chest: Thinks very highly of herself, slightly cocky and likes to be right all the time. It doesn’t take a genius like Sherlock to figure out what this woman is all about. I’m not a judgemental person but I disliked this woman; she clearly cared more about the college than the petrified sixteen year olds sitting nervously in front of her.

Once the introductions, formalities and timetables were delivered we were sent on our merry way to get a flavour of the subjects we were to take in September. All was running smoothly and I had taken a strong liking to all the lessons I had had so far. The final subject to test was one that I was thrilled to take – Creative Writing.

This was the ideal subject to take since it’s a strong passion of mine. The feeling of expressing emotion through beautiful words, laying them down onto a fresh blank page and allowing them to come alive and dance is truly wonderful. Writing has been a part of my life for so long that it seemed fitting to continue it in college.

Entering the muggy classroom I was greeted with a bubbly teacher. Her crazy bird nest she called hair framed her face perfectly, her olive skin darkened by the dim lights. I targeted my seat and quickly sat down to avoid any attention. I was trying my utmost hardest to blend in that I almost didn’t notice someone had sat down next to me. But why? There were so many other seats available, why choose the one next to me?

I spotted imprints of thousands of freckles, like sparkling stars, sitting importantly on her pasty white skin. The sophistication and elegancy was empowering. A pretty pastel pink jumper, faded black jeans and the most stunning heeled boots. I watched as she fixed her fringe, her short bob a gorgeous subtle ginger shade. Our teacher for the next hour or so went round the class asking us generic questions about high school and the other subjects we were taking. And soon enough, it was time for the girl next to me to speak.

“My name’s Alice…” she spoke with poise, “And leaving high school was the best thing that happened to me.”

Slowly everyone turned to look at her with blank expressions. The teacher pushed back her shaggy black hair, completely lost for words. She swiftly moved on with the lesson.

I wanted to know more. I wanted to be her friend. I wanted to talk for hours on end about her past, her dreams and ideologies. By just one simple sentence I was engrossed by this stranger. For the entirety of the lesson I tried to start a conversation, to not be the awkward person I always had been and to have the courage to say something of decency and interest. The only thing I mustered was a compliment right at the end of the lesson.

“I love your shoes, they’re so pretty…” I mumbled feebly. I felt so small and insignificant compared to her. She replied with a cheerful “Thank you, you’re so kind!”

Whilst waiting for my dad to drive up to the college and take me home, a dozen questions rang through my mind. Will she be enrolling in September? Will I ever get the chance to have a legitimate conversation with her? Did she even notice me?

She may not be as interesting as I may have thought initially but I want to know what she’s about, I want to listen to her stories of the past and what has made her into the person she is today. Alice was secretive, respectable, intriguing and a rare gem; and I can only hope to have the same effect on someone else one day.