In fifth grade, everyone in my class went to the Quaid's maosoleum.
Dad said no.
Then they went for a picnic at the Marina Club.
Dad said no.
In sixth grade, Yasir Akhtar invited me to join his new production team "Pegasus" in which he wanted me to play the lead role of a bubbly twelve year old.
In tenth grade, I was offered to go to an all-Pakistan tour as a correspondent for a Dubai-based magazine and do a write up for Pakistan's landscapes.
In eleventh grade, a study tour of China came up, everyone was going, I was simply asked to hand in my passport, the rest would be taken care of.
In twelfth grade, the chances of a Fulbright scholarship and admission at LUMS came my way.You can guess what Dad said.
I worked with FM 100 as a disc jockey for six months, after which they wanted me to continue my contract, but. Dad disagreed.
In third year, Mrs. Rubina wanted me to go to GC Lahore for an All-Pak debate. Risalpur also was passed up (for one year anyway).
In final year, I put my foot down. I wanted to go to Risalpur.
But it wasn't like I did what some people thought I had the power in me to do. I still gave up the Dawn News position. Didn't even think of going after a year of masters in Canada, didn't even blink when he told me not to go to LUMS, kind of accepted it when he stopped me from working with Sumbul, the designer, the NGO, and decided that it was for my own best, after all, when he didn't want me to go for a more permanent position in the magazine I was working for.
In my final semester of masters, last year, he told me he is not going to agree if I marry an Arayeen.
It was my turn to say no. And I did. And I am blissfully happy.
I recount many times he has said yes to things I wanted. Barbie dowries, Barbie shoes, Barbie's beach house. Public speaking competitions. Writing forums. Lot of the television work that I did was under his supervision and lot of places where I learnt were due to him.
I'm not asking aspirants to start a rebellion. I'm also only half-complaining. I am who I am because of the merge of all these experiences, beneficial or otherwise, and I wouldn't change a thing.
Guess what I'm saying is. That this month marks the fact that I did the right thing.
Because that's what he has taught his daughter to do.