Decision Making

Change your life now! Take a leap of faith

Sometimes you don’t have a guarantee that everything is going to be alright. You need to make a decision. You are not totally certain that this decision will work for you forever and you feel scared.

Sidra Ansari
Jun 22 · 6 min read

You need to know that you’re not alone.

Photo by Sammie Vasquez on Unsplash

I’m a mother of five, a doctor’s wife. I have worked in many different settings in my life. I have lived in many places in the U.K. including London, North Wales, Birmingham and Leicester. I have many great friends, new and old and I have managed to embark on a path which I am passionate about.

But what makes you think that I know what I’m doing? When I have a choice in front of me, at times I make a firm decision and see where that takes me.

Other times I wait and see if the situation changes. I want you to know that I never know for certain how something will turn out. There is no guarantee. I have to simply take a leap of faith and see where it lands me.

This is what I did for a huge life decision that I made. But I’ll get to that in a minute.

It really irks me when you procrastinate when making a decision. You see, I’m a spur-of-the-moment sort of girl. I think I’ve grown up with the idea that if you don’t go for it, you’ll always be left wondering What If?

Also, the idea that staying in one’s comfort zone isn’t any good for growth has stuck with me. Maybe it’s something I grew up knowing?

My mum would regale us with tales of travelling all the way to Scotland (from Lancashire), early on in their marriage, for my dad’s job. She said she was so happy to follow him up there even though she didn’t have a clue what she wanted to do. (As it happens she enrolled into college as she knew she wanted to go into further education).

But the point is, she wasn’t really sure. She knew she wanted to go with her husband at the ripe old age of eighteen. She took a leap of faith and followed her instinct.

A few months later they were back because of family obligations but that part isn’t important. She believed everything was going to turn out OK because she took that leap. Sometimes that’s all you can do.

It helps when you believe in Destiny. The good outcome after a decision is made is a blessing. The bad outcome a test. When it’s a waiting game you have to be patient. When you have a choice, you’re told to pray for an answer and then follow your instinct. You’re supposed to ‘tie the camel’ and then trust in God. I can’t tell you how liberating it is! You do what you can then it’s out of your hands. Bliss.

But sometimes it doesn’t work like magic. Sometimes things go from bad to worse and we don’t know how to make things right. It’s OK if this happens. We must remember that from adversity and pain new things emerge.

Photo sourced from Unsplash.com

So ultimately it comes down to the same thing. You can’t go wrong. Except when you can.

Now for the life-changing event.

I decided to marry my husband only a week or so after we met in the Autumn of 2004 and set the date for a Summer wedding.

Wait, what? Only a week after you met? Oh you mean it was an arranged marriage?

No. Don’t be silly! My parents’ marriage wasn’t even arranged in that way. No. Ours was a marriage of love and a journey which we were so excited to embark on. We met through mutual friends and both of us were religious enough to not want to prolong an engagement. As long as we were happy (and both sides of the family were happy!) we were ready to go forward and take that leap of faith, hoping for the best.

In spite of wanting a Summer wedding, we actually got married only 6 weeks later. There were many reasons for this. These were unavoidable appointments and life events of close family members. I wasn’t sure what I was doing. I had no idea what was ahead of me. I prayed. Followed my instinct and then went for it.

After I got married, it was very difficult to adjust to a completely different family dynamic. But sometimes you have to work to get through the hard part.

The hardest thing to get used to was that I had come from a mollycoddled upbringing in North West England. We had attended a good school which had a lot of minority ethnic groups in it. We moved to London when I was 15 years old. There, I learnt a new version of diversity. I revelled in the flair and originality of living in the capital. I celebrated the novel idea of being different. I loved it.

The Black Country, which is where I ended up, was a total shock. I played Spot the Asian at the local shopping centre. I wear a hijab and people would speak to me as if I didn’t know English- in a slow and deliberate manner. I undertook work experience in a local school and the teachers were super friendly. However, I surprised them when I told them I had completed my Batchelor of Science degree in London.

So here I was. A stranger amongst the masses. An anomaly. I didn’t drive so I had to walk everywhere. It never ocurred to me to sit inside. We didn’t have a TV for starters (our Sufi Master and teacher would have disapproved in case you’re wondering). I had a few consequences for this. To name a few things I was:

  1. Shouted at by passengers of a nondescript white van- this happened on many occasions.
  2. My baby was spoken about on a crowded train into a phone. The lady said in loud frustrated tones that ‘this f*****g baby won’t shut up!’
  3. An old lady passed by me on the street, her and her dog were whimpering as I went past. I couldn’t understand it. She’d been blinded by the media so much that she thought I was a threat.
  4. A man in a car revved his engine and accelerated a little as I crossed the road.

To be honest, if you’ve ever been under racial attack youtself you’ll recognise these things. Of course it’s not great but you get on with it.

We’ve lived in many different areas but the one I’m living in right now is the most hostile towards people of colour. The only reason I know how much this has affected me (and why I thought to write about it now) is of course becsuse of the BLM movement. I hope that, in the future, people will become more tolerant of those people of another faith.

So in conclusion, yes it was a choice to move here. No I don’t think it was a good choice. To be fair we did think about moving away a fair few times over the years but it’s never come to fruition. I still have the conviction that something good will come from this.

I began this wanting to tell you to trust your instinct and to take a leap of faith. And ended with a story about finding myself in a racist town.

I really must work on my story thread!

There is something you can take from this. Sometimes, when you take the leap, life doesn’t turn out the way you imagined it would. But sometimes it is all that you can do. Nothing in life is perfect or without its test and trials.

You never know where life will take you but you have to take the risk. Don’t think that someone has an easy life just because they seem to get by with a smile on their face.

Maybe their outlook on life is different. A different perspective can change everything. The decision to marry my husband was good. But it came hand in hand in living in the heart of the Black Country.

I couldn’t have had one without the other. So even though it hasn’t been easy, I’m glad I took that leap. I am stronger for it. The wound is the place where light enters you.

No I don’t think you’ll ever know whether you are making the right decision until you live through it. You have to take that jump. You’ve got to believe me. It may not always turn out the way you hope it will. But it’s got to be better than sitting there and doing nothing because you’re afraid. Don’t you think?

Sidra Ansari

Written by

Word after word after word makes a sentence. Sentences help me to understand life (that’s the hope anyway!). I love to hear from you! Visit the7ofus.blog

Sidra Ansari

Written by

Word after word after word makes a sentence. Sentences help me to understand life (that’s the hope anyway!). I love to hear from you! Visit the7ofus.blog

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