UPDATE – AM I A PESCATARIAN?

Thought I`d write a little about my latest thoughts when it comes to the vegetarian and vegan world. For several months I`ve been trying to eat less meat. I started reading about the meat industry and how it`s become destructive for not only our earth and environment, but also for our health. I haven`t stopped eating meat completely (it can be difficult when you`ve eaten meat for years, but it gets more difficult when you get served dishes with meat at home), but the more I got into this so called journey, the more I`ve thought that my goal is to try to eat less meat.

When I was in Pakistan and my family got to know that I`ve stopped eating meat, I always thought “I don`t know how to explain” because I know my family – they eat a lot of meat and won`t really get my decision. Also, it wasn`t true that I`ve completely stopped eating meat, but they made it seem like I completely had stopped eating it. But, them asking me why made me think quite a lot about it. I don`t know if I`m ever going to stop eating meat and chicken 100 %, but I think we should eat less, at least for our own sake. I`ve also tried out a few vegan products. I don`t think I`m ever going to become a vegan, because cutting out cheese, butter AND milk sound like too much ( at least right now), but I definitely want to keep trying out new vegetarian and vegan products. I think it`s fun to explore what`s out there and just a few days ago I bought soya milk and a packet with “vegetarian burgers” because they were on sale and because I thought it`s great to try out new things.2018-07-20 09.52.23 1.jpgI feel like my thoughts on vegetarianism and veganism have changed a little, because I haven`t cut out meat 100 %. It`s as if you have to cut everything out completely in order to be a good vegetarian or vegan, but I think doing something great about your lifestyle is better. I still don`t know, though. I can`t watch animals being killed, then why should I eat them? That question has been bothering me, and makes me think I`m not doing it properly since I haven`t stopped eating meat completely. 2018-07-20 08.10.11 1.jpg

The question is: Do I have to stop eating meat and chicken in order to be a “good” pescatarian? Or do I have to start a vegan life and do everything perfectly? I`m curious, because it seems like almost nothing is good enough anymore. So, vegetarians and vegans out there! Why did you end up on that road? Do you do everything perfectly? 

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WE DON`T NEED FILTERS, WE NEED CONFIDENCE

Today on the train I was on my phone (no, I don`t want to be one of those who looks like she`s always on her phone) and I checked out this app called “beauty filter” that I had downloaded some time ago. I enjoy editing photos, therefore I downloaded it. But, suddenly I saw a few features which can make your face look more “beautiful”. A little surprised I checked two of them out a little and apparently, you could make your face look more thin. That just made me sad and I deleted the app instantly.

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Because WHY do we even need filters like that? I know some are going to say it`s for fun, but isn`t it more fun to appreciate how you look and accept it? The worst thing about apps like these ones, is that people use them and upload their photos on social media, like Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. We know it`s not reality, but yet many of us compare ourselves with others and think “I want to look more like that!”. Think about it: If you have to take photos of yourself and for example edit them by making your skin look more white and by making your face look smaller and put them online, doesn`t it usually mean you think you look prettier that way or doesn`t that mean that`s how you want to “present” yourself to the world? Still, I didn`t feel so annoyed on behalf of the users when I deleted it, I felt more annoyed because something like this even exists.

We don`t need “beauty” filters like that, we need more love, confidence and acceptance. We need to start loving ourselves, instead of putting on 7 filters. 

GLAD I GREW UP WITHOUT A PHONE IN MY HAND

In Pakistan I`ve been surrounded by little kids and I`ve been noticing the difference between kids here in Pakistan (especially in small towns) and in Norway. More kids in Norway have access to mobiles, computers, Ipads – the internet world, in general. Here, the world is different for many kids, but my cousins have asked their aunts about their phones because they`ve been wanting to play games and that reminds me of what my own childhood was like.

I didn`t know what a phone was when I was little. It wasn`t that normal to have phones in your pockets when I was born, but look at how different things are now. Eight years old kids have big phones in their hands. I`ve seen little kids playing on their phones instead of talking to each other, on the metro. Less kids play outside now, it`s become less common to ring on each other`s doorbells and it`s become more common for parents to exchange board games with iPads.

I remember my brother and I used to watch TV with excitement. We both had our favourite shows, but nevertheless we weren`t picky. I loved Winx Club and used to get up early on Saturdays, to quietly go downstairs and turn on the TV. But, we weren`t allowed to watch too much TV and we were okay with that, because there were so many other things to do! Jumping on the trampoline, playing with my dollls or with Lego, using chalk in front of the house, playing hopsotch, football or hide and seek. I also enjoyed drawing. What do kids do today? And what do parents do? Way too many give an Ipad or a phone to their kids so they will be quiet and not irritate them. It`s easy to do, but the consequences are many. Childhood isn`t supposed to spent inside, staring at a screen for hours and hours. A child`s supposed to play with other children, get to know the world and play games outside.

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I`m glad I didn`t grow up with smart phones in my hands or with parents who handed me an iPad whenever I was annoying them. I`m glad we were many people jumping on our trampoline and I`m glad I got to enjoy a world without internet. Kids don`t need smart phones, they need attention, love and people who see them. It`s also important that parents put away their phones when they`re with their kids, because Facebook and Instagram won`t disappear, but the time you get with your kids will.

WOULD I LIKE TO LIVE IN PAKISTAN?

I`ve been asked whether I would like to live in Pakistan or Norway a few times now, and I think it`s an interesting question. Mainly because my opinions are divided. Norway and Pakistan are different countries in so many ways, that I don`t know where to begin. And yes, I haven`t lived in Pakistan but I`ve spent enough time here to know that my life in Norway suits me better.

I like being in Pakistan because of my family. Two of my aunts and their families live here, along with other family members as well. But the way of looking at things is too much for me… I like some things with the Pakistani culture, like the food, clothes and the idea that family`s important. But there are many things that annoy me, as well. One thing that has gotten to me for quite a long time now, is the phrase “what will people say?” God, that one sentence ruins my mood, because I know it kills more dreams and ideas than people will ever realise. It`s worse in small towns – people are more tensed about what people will think about your dressing, appearance and the way you act. As a “foreigner” in one way, it sometimes looks like everything`s okay on the surface, but I know that`s not completely true. I`m glad this idea isn`t stuck that much in people`s minds in Norway, because I don`t care that much about what people say. I`d be wrong if I said that I don`t care at all, but I believe in individualism more than many people here and I value feelings, thoughts and emotions more than what dress someone`s wearing.

This might look like a negative post, but I just want to share another thing that bothers me and makes me appreciate my life in Norway more. The women`s situation here in Pakistan makes me very sad… Women that get married when they`re 17-20, without having a little of their lives sorted out. Some want to, but many don`t and I know that. Don`t tell me women in Pakistan are living a good life because many more study now, because education is only a part of it. I`m glad more women seem to attend college and university now, but there`s still this idea that it`s more important for men to study. Some can`t leave the house without their husbands. There`s this idea that woman should stay at home and take care of the house and their kids, and act a certain way. Pakistan`s one of the worst countries to be woman in, according to some research done by the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security, and the Peace Research Institute of Oslo. I guess that says a lot.

It`s not that I absolutely can`t live in Pakistan, but I don`t think I could live in Pakistan AND live the life I`m living in Norway. I`m more free in Norway and it`s where my life is. I`m able to go to the mall alone and I can finish my studies. Also, the way of thinking there is different and makes it easier for me to live my life there as I want to live it. 

3 THINGS YOU CAN DO FOR THE ENVIRONMENT

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⭐️ Next time you want to buy some new clothes for yourself: visit a vintage shop/a thrift shop. Some people might think that used/old clothes look weird and smell weird, but that not completely true. In fact, if you visit a thrift shop you`ll be able tot see for yourself the condition of the clothes. I went to a thrift shop yesterday, because I was curious to see what they had and what the prices were. They had so many nice things, like lace dresses and denim jackets and so much were very cheap. Next time I`m going to buy clothes. I`m definetely going to visit Fretex (the name of the thrift shop).

⭐️ If you`ve got left-overs from yesterday or food you`re afraid might get too old by the time you eat it – freeze it. That way you`ll save money and food!

⭐️ Instead of throwing clothes from your wardrobe that you maybe don`t like, think are too old, are a size too big or small or that you think you`ve used too much; think twice. Maybe you can make a skirt out of a dress? What about a DIY? You`ll find plenty on Youtube! If you don`t want to do that, I recommend you to sell them online (second-hand online markets) or give them to an organisation. Everything is better than throwing them in the garbage!


PS: I re-did my closet this weekend and put my winter clothes away for now. I`m going to sell some of my wardrobe this summer. I don`t know whether I`m going to put them online for sale on a Norwegian site or a more “world-known” site. Among some of the things are hoodies and pants (some of them have barely been used). Some are older than others of course, but they`re well used and I`ll be selling everything for a cheap price. Let me know if you`re curious/interested. 🙂 

TO YOU WHO`RE TRYING TO FIND OUT WHAT TO STUDY

Maybe you`re 18 or 19 and trying to find out what to study. Or you`re 25 and ready to go back to school. You can find several advices out there, on what to do. You should check out what different colleges and universities offer, what possibilities you have and visit different schools. I did that about two years ago, and honestly got more and more confused. It was good to know what options I have out there and find bachelors that I thought looked quite interesting. On the other hand, it`s not that easy to take 9 bachelors at the same time. I had several bachelors on my list and kept changing their positions till the deadline.

What helped me, was not thinking “what is something I`m going to make the most money out of” or “what`s beneficial for me to study considering the future job market”. I`ve been told social anthropology isn`t beneficial, it`s apparently not the most attractive bachelor to do, but I didn`t really have in mind what`s most attractive and not in the job marked when I applied for the studies. I was standing between sociology and social anthropology for several weeks. I kept switching between them, because both seemed interesting, but I ended up with social anthropology. IMG_2224Why? Because it seemed interesting and it was something I thought that I would like. The whole idea of studying something because it`ll be beneficial for you later on when it comes to applying for jobs, isn`t that attractive to me. We need everyone, we need people who`ve studied different things. We need firemen, policemen, teachers, doctors, engineers, psychologists, sociologists, priests – you get it. I chose what I wanted to, what I liked or thought I`d like and that`s what I recommend you to do too, if you`re not sure about what you should study. You should study something you want to! After all, you`re the one who`s going to spend your time on it.

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And if you`re not sure about what you want or like, then I can advice you to talk to a councelor or visit different universities. Maybe you`ll find out you can do a minor in something else in your bachelor? Like me – I`m taking some history courses now along with the anthropology ones.  I also want to say that even though I`m soon done with my second year, I`m not 100 % sure about whether I`m studying what`s right for me or not. I`ve during these two years many times thought of doing something else, I`ve looked up other courses and bachelors I`ve found interesting. Right now I`m thinking of taking a bachelor in sociology after this one, which says something about how commited (not) I am to what I`m studying right now. Don`t get me wrong, I find it interesting but I think the academic stuff is different from what it is really like in the job market or in the field. I`m not the biggest fan of the academic world either. So, don`t think that everyone who`s studying knows what they`re doing – I can assure you many of us don`t! It`s a process, it takes time to figure what exactly you want to go for. Maybe you`re supposed to study more than just one thing? Who knows. Trust yourself enough to know that you`ll find the right road one day.

Good luck. 😎 If you have any questions about what I`m studying, what life at the university can be like or more advices, let me know. I`ll try to help as much as I can. 💕

THIS IS HOW SOME PEOPLE USE HISTORY

Yesterday, on the metro, two girls were sitting in front of me. They were talking about different things, and suddenly one of them started telling the other about a friend who had been exercising a lot and according to her was very thin.

“It looked like he had just come out of a nazi-camp”.

I sat here, a little too shocked. Some seconds later I walked out of the metro and now I`m regretting that I didn`t say anything. Maybe those two girls will not read this, but who knows? I`m also writing this to those of you that allow yourselves to use historical events in ways like this.

Because the camps was systematic evilness. There were millions of deaths there. People were gassed and murdered. Many never saw the people they loved, ever again. There was hunger, pain, fear, frustration, panic. People were shot because they were who they were.

I have visited some of the camps and these are some of the things that met me:vic8554332_417847461559125_1193596514_n306286_417845308226007_1523155661_n532836_417836118226926_1967008665_n561797_417847528225785_421042842_n574815_417849164892288_258154849_n(In case you don`t know: the last picture shows some of the things they “collected” from the jews and the others that were in the camps. I remember was told they cut off their feet to experiment with them.) 

The way we talk about history and use it, says a lot about our understanding of it. I think it`s sad that people use expressions and words just like that, as if they don`t really mean anything.

And I hope those two girls for their own sake visit some of the camps and learn some history.