8 days left in austin

Saying bye bye to Thunderbird coffee, where I took Sufyan a lot until he was about 2.

time in Austin is dwindling. I can hardly believe it. I’m excited and nervous and tired all at once. If this move was just me and Faris, I would be completely at peace with it. But as with all decisions since becoming a parent I can feel the weight of my actions being at least 2x more heavy. I’m taking 2 very young people on a big life changing trip across the ocean. I remember moving at 7 with my parents. I sat in the back seat and cried and watched my house disappear into the road behind us. Now I wonder how hard that must have been for my parents.

in leaving austin there are several things I want to share.
One thing is a story or 2 from my time here. 13 interesting years.
Lately at night stories of Austin, essentially the entirety of my young adult life, flood my mind like flashbacks. I prepare to say good-bye, and I remember these things.
I leave austin with (proudly? i didn’t do anything to deserve these 2 things) 2 interesting notes to my name. I am an entire chapter in a book and in another book i am given honorable mention.
I suppose that’s pretty cool. Proof for as long as these books are around that I was here and my life intertwined importantly with someone else’s.
I met my best friend Cristina here. Everyone I knew growing up had a best friend. I had a best friend until high school when cliques and puberty tore us apart. No one ever appeared to fill that void. I used to envy women who had a best friend and wonder why I never seemed to click with anyone for long enough to use those words. I even eschewed the words “best friend” as a petty way to rank important people in your life. After all, people are important for different reasons and at different times and often equally important at various brief events. The word “best” seemed to undermine this. But Cristina is my best friend in the sense that we totally love and count on one another. We couldn’t be more different, but we share everything. We support each other. We try to remember important events in each other’s lives (I totally suck at that I admit) and she makes me laugh uncontrollably at the stupidest things. She’s hilarious. She’s brilliant. I am always in awe of her: politically, organizationally, socially, maternally, fashion-wise…pretty much everything. I’m grateful I came to austin and met her here. Is it hard to leave her and her beautiful family? yes. (“ooooooh wes!” as Laila would say.) (“of tourse it is” as Sufyan would say). It’s so hard.
Austin story #1: (a sad one but pretty miraculous)
I’m 23. It’s 1998.
david has just died. i am so torn up i can’t work. luckily, the restaurant where i wait tables (where he and I both waited tables until a month before his sudden passing) is understanding. they knew he and I were close and the manager invites me to come in on a day when the restaurant is closed to clean and earn some money. I need it, so I agree. I spend the morning cleaning and crying. Alone. People are afraid to talk to me because they don’t want to upset me, so they just hug me and let me cry. I am cleaning a booth table, and thinking “I just wish I had thought to leave something tangible behind. Something that he and I shared, like if we had scratched our names into the wood here or something ANYthing tangible from his life. ”
At that very moment, I turn over the booth cushion. What is under it? Something impossible.
A picture of David.
A picture. Of David.
Yes I still have it. Of tourse I do.

Us recently saying goodbye to places we love.
Sufyan at Zilker park

Laila and Baba at Zilker.

The trampoline is a great place to jump until you’re worn out. And very happy.

Laila is teething!

Sufyan has this sweet little smile when he’s lost in thought and still responding to Mama saying, “can you smile baby boy?”

One of our 2 favorite parks. We called it “baba Park” because when I was pregnant with Laila, Baba would often meet us there after work and Sufyan would RUN into his arms excitedly. Now they both get to do that!

He’s balancing.

And trying on Laila’s hat…

My boy

My girl!

Static electricity and the trampoline and a fleece jacket = 80’s hair

Stick your tongue out!

Laila makes kissing noises now and the best part is this cute face she makes when she does it:


2 thoughts on “8 days left in austin

  1. The story about your friend and his photo made me cry and man…that is something.Books with you in them=incredible.Your children are so beautiful and smart that they will have no choice but to flourish WHEREVER they live.AAAANNNNNDDDDDD…They have the luxury of fabulous parents.

  2. Oh, yes, your children are beautiful. I can't wait to read about what happened after the plane landed. You are such a part of my fabric and all that is meaningful to me.

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