Teeanage Dreams

I grew up simple and I grew up good. I was brought up in a middle class house whose occupants had learned to be happy with what they had and had refused to become part of the rat race. My grandmother, who lived in an area 2 levels below the mid-middle class stereotype loved me very much, which is why I spent most of my childhood with her. Safe to say, I had aloo paratha for breakfast, played cricket insanely and watched cartoon network from 5 to 7 in the evening. Life was simple and I had no plans of complicating it. My sense of style sucked, I was honest and I gave no less of a fuck about what people thought about me. Then I grew up a bit and BANG, came teenage. Things started changing for me. I got into a relationship, started hitting the gym and my pants started getting tighter and my shirts shorter. Suddenly, I wanted to be cool and as I grew up realizing, it was okay to do so. Then I grew up some more and things got in the HOT TEENAGE ZONE. Girlfriend troubles started breaking out, I started getting low on cash ( Not that I had any before ), I started getting into bitch fights with friends and the mandatory teenage rebel  in me started waking up. Pretty soon, life was “bad”. And I did what I did best in response to it. I played video games, I played some cricket and I ate to my heart’s content. My girlfriend didn’t like that, so she started giving me more shit. My friends didn’t like that either, so they decided to add to that pile of shit. And my best response was to go home, get busy and not give a fuck. Life went on. I graduated from school, dumped my girlfriend and stopped talking to the friends altogether. A new phase began and I got busy and forgot to look back. Fast forward to the 2010s. Orkut happened, then Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the end of the fucking world. New stories sprung up all around me and this time, as much as I tried not to, I couldn’t help not care. It was in my face, the fiasco, the drama, the acquired lifestyles that kids were trying so hard to fit into. I remembered my days of teenage troubles and how I never thought of writing a fucking poem. I remember how crying was stupid and reasons for being “depressed” were things like the end of Alpha Bravo Charlie or Pakistan losing a match. I remember how the only reason I would be hurt was if someone kicked me in the gut or punched me in the face. Yes, that happened. What I saw was kids, well off kids, kids with resources, potential and decent parents, trying too hard to be sad. What could a 16 year old possibly be so depressed about that he decides to drink away his troubles? What could go so wrong with a 16 year old in her normal life (Other things remaining the same) that she decides to strip away her self esteem and brush it off with her waxed off body hair? What could possibly lead to a 16 year old putting up a Facebook picture with a caption “ You left me alone in the world to die “ and a </3 sign at the bottom? And then I realized, I knew the answer.

“The lack of a certain abba/amma ka danda”

We grew up tough because we were afraid. We knew that if we went home with our butt crack staring at the world, our parents would beat us the fuck out. We knew who to respect and when to talk and we sure as fuck knew our place. We had boundaries and we had a code. Everything had a spot. Family, muhalla, the playground and the only reason we didn’t go soft is because we had a mum or a dad or even a nani/nana, dadi/dada to keep us in line. We were strong, both in the head and in the gut and if we came home crying, our parents told us to walk it off. We liked to eat because it felt good and we spent time with our families because they mattered. Weight, height, clothes and penis size were issues never to be bothered with and the best way to deal with crushes was to giggle , grin and go about with our lives. We couldn’t stay up all night and we never asked for more. We had the same troubles, just simpler versions of them and our responses were good, normal and effortless. And that’s because we had a danda waiting somewhere in the house, counting the minutes before it could be unleashed on us again. Had our parents brought us up by saying yes to everything we asked them for and nodding and smiling every time we fucked up, there’s a high probability I would be sitting alone in my room masturbating, crying and thinking of popping my lawn mom’s sleeping pills to end it all because “she left me alone in the world to die”.

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35 thoughts on “Teeanage Dreams

  1. Rida Rasool Hashmi

    hheheheeheheh I think the same. I guess we have become old fashioned. Kuz our parents find us sissier then themselves.

    Reply
  2. Haseeb

    I don’t know. Maybe it’s because of the exposure to such a knowledge and mediums where the “desirable” life was somehow really effed up….

    Reply
  3. ujaved

    Safa, if wordpress was a kingdom, you’d be the king. Its amazing how effortlessly you can put all these problems into such simple words, with such an impact to it. Simple yet fierce.
    I swear, all these $waggin’ teens need a danda on their bums and legs to know what life actually was before their iphones and yolos. Inko do teen gaaliyan agayeen hain, yeh isi main khush hogaye hain. DSLR aagaya hai, chicks phans rahi hain, issliye aaj aisi vulnerable halaat hai humari qoum ki.

    Reply
  4. Abdul Rehman

    finally!!! u have written a story that belongs to most of us. “90’s and earlier kids most precisely”
    bravo! perfectly written, every bit of it!

    Reply
  5. Saniya

    Danda? My parents had a wired hanger and a leather belt!

    Nonetheless, this is a great piece! Perfectly written! Reminds me of the 90s days.

    Reply
  6. UsmanQaiser

    Exactly. Agreed. I remember once I went to a pool with friends in the daytime without informing my parents, My dad had beaten me up with chappals in front of everyone. Today, kids sneak out of the house at nights for parties topi karakar and they get iPhone in return the next morning.

    2010s’ Parents should be a little more strict and little more aware of what their child is getting into. Too much independence at this age is ruthful in return.

    Reply
  7. Momina Aftab

    So true. Very well-written. I could relate to almost whole of it, especially the last paragraph. :’) (Y)

    Reply
  8. YumnaMirza

    Hahahaha! Your epiphany had me laughing out loud! You’re right, might I say I’ve been to the very edge of these worlds and only the brusque “shake it off” attitude of my Ami has kept me sane and in this normal state of mind. A “chaanta” was never too far XD

    Reply
  9. B

    Nice one but you could have censored it a little bit 😛
    I remember amma abba ka danda when I used the F-word infront of them.

    Reply
      1. Sophia Raza

        Man I have to hand it to you. You’re blunt. And open. And that is the best thing about your writing. And if anyone has problems with that then they should realize that every person is entitled to their opinion and that you are only voicing yours in the hope to awaken the snoozing masses of our nation.

  10. Farzan Saeed Khan

    No. The reason is lack of abba/amma ki attention. They’re usually too busy earning and hardly pay any attention to their children. Grandparents, on the other hand, are too conservative and impervious to change and that’s why today’s facebook generation doesn’t get along with them. Parents need to evolve. In this day and age, parents need to be friends with their children, not their masters.
    PS: Time has changed. What was considered immoral in the days of our grandparents is now just a routine. No educated guy “checks out” a girl even if she is wearing shorts. Though an uneducated, religious guy usually do check out woman, even if she’s wearing a shuttle-cock burqa.

    Reply
    1. Sophia Raza

      I’m sorry but I guess your opinion is biased. Being a girl I know how many ‘educated guys’ who’re already on dates with their girls throw stolen glances towards other girls seated elsewhere in the cafe. So it’s not just the religious ones who hide under their invisible cloak of piety.

      Reply
  11. White Pearl

    WOW ! Another masterpiece ! I always wonder where are the Pakistani Honest Bloggers I heard of who write all honest and true things about Pakistani lifes. And here you are…..Happy to have you discovered ! Love the way you write…so blunt and open yet so true ! Your facts are all accurate….But you know still in these circumstances there are people who keep away from all the shit and pass there life simply…though they are rare but we can be like them…..The thing is we just need something good to hold on to ! We are Pakistanis but we should be as Good Muslims too…Pakistan was made on the name of Islam…..I can’t see any religious touch in all the story…You know every problem has a straight solution in Islam if we get to Love Allah ! Excellent post !

    Reply
  12. Wanna Be Happy Always

    i wonder why parents are so damn worried of their kids, what they could do? why dont they show their anger? what are they afraid of? and why our parents were not afraid of that? why our parents beat the shit out of us for anythng wrong we did? i guess we are blessed to be brought up like this.. atleast we know what life is, way better than today’s generation.. thumbs up

    Reply

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