Unlocking Me

8:48:00 PM

Two years ago, I did a collection called LOVE for aere. The story and the message behind the collection was about reflecting on what we love most, as well as a reminder to love and take care of ourselves. The thing is, I was saying it years ago, trying to spread the positive message through my work but in actual fact what actually happened was that I didn’t really love myself enough to actually take care of my own overall well-being, even though it should have been the focus. I realise that although I think about it a lot, wanting to focus on the things that are actually important for us to continue living, I’ve been going through a lot of pain that no one knows about but I didn't take the actual necessary steps to get better and I’ve always just swept it under the rug. I ignored it, my health, myself till it’s kind of ... too late. The pain that went through my body and the exhaustion that was signalling to me that something needed attention, that something was wrong, but I ignored it and continued to work and live life as though everything was fine, everything was ok. It’s like, I didn’t really practice what I myself had preached or intended to convey. To love yourself, and take good care of yourself so that you will be healthy enough to take care of those whom you love around you. So that you can do what you are meant to do in this life. 

I only started to realise this though, that I haven't really taken care of myself just very recently when things got worse. In the beginning of my realisation a few months ago, I was approached for this interesting campaign and the talented director of this campaign asked me intimate and very personal questions about myself as he was trying to unlock who was the real me. Most of the questions asked were so personal that no one actually really asked me before or if they did I've never actually really answered it. He got me to answer these probing questions as he gave me his word that it would just be between me and him and none of it will be used in the campaign without my approval.

It was basically an exercise to unlock myself. Who am I really? Under all the layers that people see me as, who am I? That is the question.

I thought that I knew who I was but as they tried to unlock me with all the questions, I realised it wasn't so easy to answer. Ok yes, my normal and obvious roles are there: I am a slave to God, a wife to my loving, caring and overall amazing husband, a daughter to my ever beloved parents,  a mother to my two children in heaven and 2 adorable sons here in this world, a sister to my supportive siblings, friends to my amazing close circle of friends, worker or more of a workaholic, boss and a team mate to my great aere team, a blogger in this personal writing space of mine, instagrammer and all that, things I'm extremely grateful for. I'm still struggling my best to be good or better at the roles that I have right now because I know that sometimes I really suck at some of them, sometimes I screw up and make mistakes too. But, the question is behind all those roles, peeling all these roles layer by layer, who am I really? 

What is it that I want? What is it that I really want to do? I took a long hard look at myself, what my hobbies were when I was little, the things that I choose to do and want to do in my free time and the things that make me happy. What were the things that make me at peace without the need for me to share or tell anyone about it? What are the things that I wanted to do but couldn't because of the pressure that I have or imposed on myself due to the many roles, the many hats, the obligations and the responsibilities that I have? There are a lot more questions and this campaign made me really reflect a lot about my own life and with my current state of health it made me reflect upon all this even more.

It is the kind of thing that I feel even the closest ones to me never actually knew the answer and to be honest, I myself didn't have the answer as I never actually gave the time to even actually reflect upon it or even question myself. I was just so busy focusing on what I thought matters most in life. Everything else except what actually matters the most. So, I went through the grilling process a few months ago when I was just about to take a break from work to focus on something that I should have done a long long time ago.

This campaign actually helped me so much in unlocking me and I feel like it is something that we all need to consistently reflect upon. There are times that I'm so sure of who I am, but there are times that I feel just so confused. Especially when I'm going through major changes. Perspective, character, life view can change too as we go through the different phases of life, the different experiences, the good and more so, the bad ones.

So yes, I finally did it. I decided that I must take care of what matters most. Health. Without it, how can we take care of our dearest beloved ones, those who matter the most to us and also other important  things in life? 

If you have read my latest blogpost LIFE CHANGES you would know that I’ve been diagnosed with a number of sicknesses including a chronic illness. All this and more has forced me to take even better care of myself and really focus on something that I haven’t been focusing on as much as I say I want to. My health.

I have let everything else get in the way of my own health and overall well-being for the longest time and it’s time to make major changes in my life to focus more on personally getting better physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. 

I'm determined to continue to do so and not to continue to sacrifice my own health for other things again. The thing that I'm worried about is that as a human being, we are just so forgetful about this kind of things. I mean I've forgotten to take care of myself, countless times. And really, with all the meds that I'm taking right now, I really feel that I'm even more forgetful at times and as I'm writing this, I hope that one day if I forget this again I will at least remember to read this post and redirect my focus. If I don't, maybe someone can just help send this post to me so that it will be a reminder for my own self.

Anyways, below is a snippet video I edited from the full video of a social experiment which was conducted a few months ago by Max Factor for the #UnlockingRealWomen campaign.  The closest person to us were called and they had to guess who the person is behind one of our important object that symbolises the most important thing to us behind our roles. So they managed to dig in into a part of me that I've never actually shared before, the things that make me happy and at peace yet it is something that even the closest to me didn't know about.

They asked me for 3 names of my best friends so I gave the names of some of my best friends who are really like my sisters who have known me for over 20 years : Ruzana Ibrahim, Shereen Bahawi and Hasanah Hilmi. Shereen made it to the special experiment that day and it resulted in this video! Before it unfolded it was really exciting as Shereen had no idea that the campaign had anything to do with me and the object she had to comment on was mine.

The campaign started a few months ago and Max Factor wanted to unlock what it means to be a Real Woman. Through a social experiment, they wanted to make people realise that women are more than just the roles expected of them by society, and that they have their own dreams and aspirations.

I’m so honoured to be a part of this meaningful campaign to unlock our real selves together with Lisa Surihani, Kavita Sidhu and Ling Oo and I’m very happy that Max Factor (@maxfactormy) wants to remind us of who we are behind our roles.

Oh, I’m doing a #RNadiaGiveaway where 2 of you (one from my Instagram and another from this blog) will get some makeup items from Max Factor including the Masterpiece Nude Pallette, False Lash Epic Mascara, Lipfinity, Color Elixir Matte Lipstick and High Precision Eye Liner. 

All you need to do here is watch the full video by clicking the links above and tell me what you feel or think about this video or about whatever that I shared above at the comment section below. 

Have a good time reflecting and have a blessed Friday!

#UnlockingRealWomen #MaxFactorMY


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  3. I agree with you that Working Moms wear many hats and tackle a slew of responsibilities every day. Trying to balance the responsibilities of being a wife, a mother, and a full-time employee can feel downright impossible at times. Being a mother is one of the hardest yet fulfilling jobs and when coupled with a full-fledged professional life, a working mom has a daunting task to fulfil. Managing the kids, taking care of the family and juggling the responsibilities of the home along with a career, work commitments and deadlines put a lot of pressure on the working mom. In the midst of all these moments and tasks, there’s very little time for you even though self-care is essential for our well-being.

    It is often said that a mum is the engine room of the family. But even if she's running on Duracell batteries, she can't survive at optimum levels if she doesn't have a bit of time to herself .As a working mom, we must know that It is not selfish to love and care for ourselves. It clears us, so that we can love ourselves enough to love other people. If you feel guilty about self-care, remember this, Taking care of yourself isn't a luxury; it's an essential part of being a good mom, wife, daughter or even an employee. Besides, Taking some time for ourselves sends the message that self-care is important and shows your kids how to do the same. It teaches them to love themselves and rise to their highest potential. It almost seems backwards to say that taking time away from your family can in fact benefit them, but it is true! When you do things for yourself to nurture your mind, body and spirit, your whole family will benefit.

    Kak Nadia,I know that Asking people who is being tested with illness to be patience is easier to be said than done But I have always believe that Allah test different people with different trials, because everyone has a different level of patience, tolerance and faith. So, welcome your hardships for they are blessings. Know that Allah loves you and He has given you an opportunity to come close to Him. Allah loves you and that is why He has allowed you to earn more rewards. He loves you and that is why He put you through tribulations to test your faith and love for Him. Allah loves you and will never abandon you, He just wishes for you to keep your faith strong in Him and earn more rewards.