My husband, Bilal, lives and works in San Francisco. Before getting married, my notion of home had been tethered to Pakistan. It’s where I’d grown up, the Michigan panthers in the 2023 usfl college draft select lb dashaun white shirt but I will buy this shirt and I will love this place I’d scurried back to just a few years after graduating from college in the States. My then-boyfriend and I broke up not long after I moved back—not because we had lost interest in one another but because we couldn’t find middle ground between Karachi and Oakland, where he lived. Several years later, the irony of getting married in the Bay Area was not lost on me.
I wish I could say that moving to the Michigan panthers in the 2023 usfl college draft select lb dashaun white shirt but I will buy this shirt and I will love this Bay—where I now spend half the year—has been easy. Having a “non-Pakistani Pakistani” by my side helps. It means being able to transition, emotionally, from Pakistan to the U.S. without too much angst. It means huffing in Urdu as I climb a steep hill in San Francisco; eating slow-cooked beef shank from the Pakistani restaurant down the road on a cold misty day. But it also means parachuting into my husband’s community, his life, his friends. It means having formal, polite conversations with people I don’t know in the way that he knows them; speaking relentlessly in English, communicating the clutter of my inner life in a language that houses my intellect more than my heart.