Almost every day for the last week or so, the Boys have been coming around after work. Sometimes around 4 or 5pm, sometimes later around dinner time. Lovely and I live in a joint family situation and so we only have one room to be in. The Boys come up and hang out there, or we go out to a restaurant to eat, or we go have chai at a local hotel/dhaba situation.
Today, I haven’t had consistent sleep. Snuffles hasn’t either, but unlike me he’s been working all day. And Afrasayab is… well… Afroo… sometimes grumpy, sometimes chughalkhor, sometimes intense, always fun. So here we sat today as the sun set, Afrasayab reading a passage from a self-help book Snuffles suggested; Snuffles reading an article about anarchic relationships with the university that Afroo gave him; me knitting; and Lovely wandering in and out, being on the phone, attending to everyone and staying nowhere for a very long time.
This is my family. This is a weekday evening with my people. It is a blessing I haven’t experienced in a long time because i was out of the country. Not that I didn’t have family there. My problem is having family everywhere. But this family, here, is queer, is desi, is Muslim, is mine. We could all raise kids together, or raise hell, or raise awareness, or raise our eyebrows and scoff at (other) fools. Most of these things we do in any case. InshAllah children also will come.
In the meantime, here I am, soft, quiet, and content. Alhamdulillah.
(featured image “queer family” taken from clara bee lavery at littlegardens.wordpress.com without permission but with deep respect and admiration, and a promise to remove it if asked.)