Leather Weather

I’m letting two worlds collide in today’s post by sharing something I wrote for my stand up class. We had to do a set about something honest, something truly personal. It didn’t have to be funny, just real. I decided to write about my near death experience I had back in 2008, which changed the trajectory of my life completely.

There isn’t anything certain in this life, except of course for death.

The saying goes ‘death and taxes’ but we all know if you are rich enough you can escape one of those. (Looking at you Donald…)

So if it is a sure thing why are we always so upset about it? I guess its always because the people who go too soon end up being the nicest, best people imaginable.

So i guess if you want to live forever just be an a-hole? No thats too easy, they die too anyway.

I almost died once. In a freak snowmobile accident. It was a complete freak accident and the 7 vodka tonics I had at various bars along the trail had absolutely nothing to do with it.

I remember none of the accident, just the before and after. I remember hitting 100 mph while Kanye’s 808 and Heartbreak blared in my headphones. That was incredible. I felt invincible. Still one of my favorite albums too…

Later that night while going about 20 mph my sled hit something and flipped over and catapulted me off in to the distance while my boyfriend, horrified, watched me helplessly as he was behind me on his own sled.

I woke up intibated, the tubes down my throat, and arms tied down to the hospital bed. I thought I was dreaming or having a nightmare or something. I couldn’t speak because of the tubes so I wrote out my one question to the nurse – what happened?? after they said I had an accident, I noticed my family was in the room – they had flown in from California – my next question was ‘ is it that bad??’ I thought I was definitely dying.

They told me I was flown to a hospital in Madison, Wisconsin, because the little podunk town we were in didn’t have a neurosurgeon, and they thought I might need brain surgery. They thought this because while I seemed totally fine, while I was talking to the doctor, I learned he used to be an Engineer so, at the time I worked for an Engineering firm and apparently I was trying to recruit MY DOCTOR TO GO BACK TO ENGINEERING AND WORK FOR MY COMPANY.

I did have two separate hematomas in my head, and i shattered my collarbone. But I would live.

My husband, then boyfriend had to make the fateful call to my parents in California. Not only did they not know I was going on this trip, they didn’t know about my boyfriend. So my not Muslim boyfriend had to call my Muslim father – like ‘hi sir, I’m dating your daughter and by the way she also might be dying’

I didn’t need brain surgery as the hematoma reduced by itself by the grace of God. I do have a shiny new metal collarbone as a souvenir though. No it does not set off the metal detector at the airport…

Almost dying was the best thing that could have happened to me. I’ve always thought I lucked out, this was my second chance at life. I’m appreciating every moment I have here on Earth, doing everything I can and trying not to complain too much. I’m not wasting my time dwelling on past mistakes nor am I wasting my precious time on people who bring me down. I’m living my life unapologetically, authentically me.

Don’t it always seem to go, that you don’t know what you’ve got until its (almost) gone?

sandro-leather-jacket-jjill-sweater-aquazzura-heels aquazzura-heels-fall-outfitaquazzura-fur-sandals jjill-sweater-layeredTop: Thanks to J.Jill (get 25% off with code OCT2517)| Jacket: Sandro (old – similar leather style – similar suede style) | Jeans: Zara (old – similar style) | Bag: Stella McCartney | Shoes: Aquazzura – similar style (under $110) |

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  • I was looking all over for a 2009 photo to do my 10 year thing - and I finally realized why I don’t have any! Some of you may already know this, but in the beginning of 2009 I got into a bad snowmobile accident where I had to be airlifted to a hospital and ended up in a coma for 3 days and ended up having a huge hematoma in my head (thankfully it healed on its own) and I had to get surgery on my broken collarbone m that is now metal plated! You may have noticed I have one bumpy collarbone - that’s the one haha. That near death experience set in motion so many things that would change my life. Most importantly I started living life for myself, I thought about all the things I would have regretted if I actually died that day. I (first broke up with but then) got married to my love @tom_sandberg, started practicing yoga regularly, tried a lot of new hobbies including horseback riding, I had a baby, started my blog, quit my job, had another baby, and now I’m at this really weird point of life - trying to decide what’s next. Now that Sophia’s getting older I have slightly more time to invest in my career, and I’m still trying to figure out where exactly I want to put my energy. 2019 is my year of exploration ~ anyone else at a similar turning point??
  • Throwback to Sophia’s first birthday! She turns two soon and I’m at a loss for ideas...(Bahamian beach party isn’t in the cards this year) I’m a theme kinda girl so please share your ideas! #birthdaygirl #tropicalparty #bahamas
  • Notes on being an American born of Pakistani immigrants...
Thanks to @urdumom for the q’s - check my highlights for expanded answers
1. Were you ever labeled an ABCD? What did you feel about that? 
Ha! Yes - I would still consider myself an 'ABCD' (American born confused Desi) although I think 'intersectional' is what the kids are calling it these days. As a kid it was difficult navigating both cultures, simultaneously being both and neither. I still struggle with it, to be honest, but I'm just now beginning to see that it is such a blessing to be sort of an outsider. It ultimately made me much more emotionally intelligent, and also broadened my perspective. 
2. Did you get to travel to Pakistan with your parents as a kid? How was the experience? 
Yes! We traveled often - almost every year - and I absolutely loved it. As a kid it was fun playing with the goats and chickens in my dads village, or shopping in the huge maze of bazaars in the city. When I was in tenth grade, my parents even sent me to Pakistan because they thought I was getting too 'wild'. Long story short, they are so advanced in education in Pakistan, we realized me going to school there meant I had to go back two grade levels, so they gave up on that plan and the whole trip became an extended vacation. I was SO resentful that I had to come back to America! I LOVED Pakistan so much. But I also knew my parents were now out of major punishment options - so I fulfilled their prophecy and became pretty wild 😜 
3. Did you face bullying at school for being different? 
sure! My first name Itrat was something kids really liked to tease me about. 'It's a rat' was a fan favorite. Kids would laugh at me and say that my dad worked at the gas station while imitating an Indian accent like Apu from The Simpsons, and they would ask me why I'm not wearing a red dot. I remember once arguing with a girl who then called me a rag head, and I thought she meant my hair was raggedy, but my older brother filled me in that she was referencing our Muslim heritage. 
4. How did your parents keep your Pakistani roots alive at home? 
My parents are both from Pakistan, so we had the food, language, music, books
More in comments
  • Northern Cali folks, my sister Rania will be teaching a Spring course called Global Islam: Culture and Civilization - at American River College in (my hometown) Sacramento! The course is introductory but covers a wide breadth of topics including the origins of Islam, the Prophetic traditions, Arts and Literature, and modern concepts as well. There are still a couple of open spots so I wanted to spread the word in case anyone was interested! Swipe left for even more detail. Save this post, share it, spread the word! (Also side note: this is a throwback way back from Sophia’s baby shower - the most recent pic we have together because I was not about to post a flyer on the feed 💁🏾‍♀️)
  • All I need in this life of sin...p.s. a bunch of old guys kept asking us where we are ‘from’ (because obvs we couldn’t be from here 🙃) - and they couldn’t believe it was Pakistan either - im going to just say outer space next time...👽 #girlfriends #ladiesnight #gno
  • SO glad I forced myself to go out tonight with my girls, sometimes we forget how much we love each other’s company 💕 #gno #chicago #girls
  • She won’t even take a bite out of something she doesn’t like - I learn lessons from this QUEEN every damn day! 🙏🏾💕 👑 👧🏻
  • When you always think the song is about you 🎶 (Queen + Adam Lambert tour here we come!)
Also going to do more stand up comedy this year because, well - being a wife and mom - no one listens to me any more and I need my validation so...yeah
Also: wearing this coat all winter long because I’m a proud outfit repeater 👊🏽 (Also because I’m an old coat kind of girl  don’t @ me) ~
  • 1) hanging with my sister Nusrat who has been here visiting since New Year’s Eve - we are 13 months apart so basically we’re twins 👯 except when it comes to our personalities we are polar opposites ☯️ she has always been the one person who constantly humbled me  whenever I thought I was too cool (which was often) she would put me in my place (whether I liked it or not) and now as an adult I really appreciate that 
2) me doing Nusrat’s makeup as I’ve always been the resident makeup/hair/stylist in the family
 3) Sophia’s lewk 😍 
2019 is starting off pretty great I’d say!

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