Find me among the star jasmine vines

STEEPED BY SAMIA #21 | 05.31.23 A life catch-up: May, movement, and musings. This is probably the first month, since starting Steeped, that I’ve waited till the last 3 days of the month to write and post something. Sure, it’d be fine if I skipped a month, but it would be kind of disappointing toContinue reading “Find me among the star jasmine vines”

Letters to my future self

STEEPED BY SAMIA #20 | 04.17.23 On 25, heartfelt letters, & a constellation-studded sky. In March, I was rummaging through “SAMIA’S BOX OF IMPORTANT THINGS”, and I came across two letters: one from 5th grade and one from 12th grade, both addressed to my future self. Approaching my 25th birthday and in a reflective mood,Continue reading “Letters to my future self”

Are you giving yourself enough credit?

STEEPED BY SAMIA #18 | 03.10.23 Sometimes you have to go uphill to go downhill again. “The yoga instructor on YouTube said that if you feel shaky during a pose, send your breath to that part of the body.” I said this to Sufyan and Abu while we were trudging up a fairly strenuous incline,Continue reading “Are you giving yourself enough credit?”

An ode to the little worlds we inhabit

STEEPED BY SAMIA #17 | 02.23.23 “What if we joined our wildernesses together?” Recently, I rewatched Fruits Basket (2019 ver.), and I was blown away by the heart-wrenching coming-of-age tidbits. In Fruits Basket, there are thirteen characters inhabited by the spirits of Chinese Zodiac animals and a god-like character at the center of them all,Continue reading “An ode to the little worlds we inhabit”

On losing & breaking things

STEEPED BY SAMIA #16 | 01.26.23 ‘My baby photos were lost in Solvang’ & other vignettes of objects well-loved. My mom’s super power is finding things. Whenever my siblings and I were looking for something, she’d find it and say, “See?? I’m a Finder Keeper!!” I think I inherited these powers — along with herContinue reading “On losing & breaking things”

A preoccupation with the strange-ness of time

STEEPED BY SAMIA #15 | 01.06.23 A tale for the time being, Majora’s mask, & the inexplicable pace of time. I’ve been preoccupied with the concept of time this week. Slipping from the end of one year, to the beginning of the next, life is literally the same — but with the freshness and promiseContinue reading “A preoccupation with the strange-ness of time”

Will I always be in a liminal space?

STEEPED BY SAMIA #14 | 12.29.22 A rainy morning, a wallower, & an interior monologue on in-betweenness. I wake up before my family and start making chai. Oatly full fat oat milk. Wagh Bakri black tea. Water. A splash of Kirkland evaporated milk. A scuffed metal pot, an old strainer, our designated chai spoon. IContinue reading “Will I always be in a liminal space?”

They don’t really know what to talk about

STEEPED BY SAMIA #13 | 12.26.22 On the growing pain of being perceived & when ‘idle conversation’ is not just idle. I’m getting the hint that our 20’s are filled with moments that teach us how to protect our peace. A subconscious guide, a thickening of the skin, that develops from all those uncomfortable andContinue reading “They don’t really know what to talk about”

The stories in my head have been quiet lately

STEEPED BY SAMIA #12 | 12.16.22 Intuition, daydreams, & the bizarre infatuation that keeps me showing up. Right about now, 6 months after restarting my blog, I thought I would start to feel less interested in it. In the back of my mind, I’ve been waiting for the other shoe to drop. But I’m happyContinue reading “The stories in my head have been quiet lately”

Read this when you feel like: You’re back at Square One

STEEPED BY SAMIA #11 | 11.28.22 I’m in my flop era — but I mean that in the kindest way to myself. This time last year, you would have found me on my bed, under two blankets, and binge-watching TWICE videos on YouTube. The performances, the music videos, the interviews, their reality TV show TimeContinue reading “Read this when you feel like: You’re back at Square One”

On the resilience of skin

STEEPED BY SAMIA #10 | 11.10.22 I’m developing a cordial relationship of sorts with my skin, wbu?? When the weather gets colder (that’s, like, 45-50° F in the South Bay…), my toes participate in a mysterious ritual. Every year, without fail. It starts with a tingling in the nighttime, that gives way to a burningContinue reading “On the resilience of skin”

In defense of quiet, meandering books & TV shows

STEEPED BY SAMIA #9 | 11.05.22 Finding joy in slower media & wondering what it means when something is “worthy of attention.” The first days of November have ushered in cold weather in the South Bay with much-welcomed rain. As I write this, I’m sipping some lavender tea with oat milk and honey and listeningContinue reading “In defense of quiet, meandering books & TV shows”

Fiction: The carnival in the clearing

STEEPED BY SAMIA #8 | 10.29.22 I wrote this Halloween-themed short story for my Craft of Creative Writing class during my first year at Mills College (shout-out to Prof. Truong Tran!). I did some edits to condense it and spruce it up. Enjoy!! It’s Halloween night. When Samir was a child, his parents didn’t allowContinue reading “Fiction: The carnival in the clearing”

The “Chocolate Mountain” & the adventure of searching for a childhood book

STEEPED BY SAMIA #7 | 10.23.22 On nostalgia & things from your childhood that you can’t remember clearly, that feel like an itch you can’t scratch. My elementary school memories are filled with warmth and wonder. Making stone soup and having an autumnal feast with my class in fourth grade. The school library transforming intoContinue reading “The “Chocolate Mountain” & the adventure of searching for a childhood book”

Read this when you feel like: You’re not “doing enough”

STEEPED BY SAMIA #6 | 9.30.22 Sometimes, things feel up in the air and a little off in every part of your life. My goal was to put out two blog posts this month. The Reality: my Notes app is littered with sparse attempts at interesting ideas (you’ll see them someday, I promise!). So, I decidedContinue reading “Read this when you feel like: You’re not “doing enough””

The harvest festival & the power of make-believe

STEEPED BY SAMIA #5 | 9.15.22 My backyard slipped away, as the world of the harvest festival took shape. Growing up, my brother and I went on make-believe adventures in our backyard. Battling goblins to protect a far-off kingdom, with newspaper swords and plastic field hockey sticks as our horses. Sitting up-side-down on our patioContinue reading “The harvest festival & the power of make-believe”

A hospital is not an art museum, but it can be

STEEPED BY SAMIA #4 | 8.23.22 CW Note: This post mentions some heavy experiences of having a parent with a life-threatening illness/cancer and visiting them at the hospital. In April, my Abu was in the hospital for a month, receiving treatment for AML Leukemia. Due to his immunocompromised state, he couldn’t really go outside; butContinue reading “A hospital is not an art museum, but it can be”

Editorializing my life: Notes from a constant ruminator

STEEPED BY SAMIA #3 | 7.11.22 Every time period in our lives carries a certain atmosphere — but we never know what the present will feel like, as it’s happening. I’ve been thinking about this concept a lot lately. I call it: Editorializing my life. It isn’t so much a narrator in my head, chroniclingContinue reading “Editorializing my life: Notes from a constant ruminator”

An ode to Shelfari & other virtual spaces that don’t exist anymore

STEEPED BY SAMIA #2 | 6.22.22 A middle schooler, a book-ish teen community, and a now defunct website. In my tween years, I used Shelfari to keep track of the books I was reading. It was a site that allowed users to browse, categorize, and review books. There was also a social / community aspect,Continue reading “An ode to Shelfari & other virtual spaces that don’t exist anymore”