Wednesday, April 9, 2014

H is for Haneen. Your Captain, duh!


Hello again everyone, the second post in the day and I refuse to be put down by my yesterday failure, I am on fire so make sure not to catch a flame. Today I will tell you the story of the name Haneen. 
So I’m a narcissist, sue me! :P

My name in its original Arabic starts with the sixth letter in the alphabet ( ح).
I welcomed the H in my life at age six when my English teacher wrote my name in English on my copybook, I was soooo happy.
She wrote it like this ‘Hanin’ with an ‘I’ in the middle.
When I got to Intermediate school, my then English teacher wrote it like this, ‘Haneen’ with the double ‘E’ it became my fav version till today because it looked cooler to me.
and unique, I didn’t see any other name with double E back then.
I did tell the meaning of Haneen before. Won’t hurt to repeat it:
“yearning, and the pain that comes from a strong feeling of missing someone or somewhere.” Yea, pretty poetic. It truly represents me.
I remember a party in my first year in High School, it was ‘ Arabic Language Day’ I presume, there were girls carrying baskets filled with colored pieces of papers with names and their meaning on it, if you were lucky your name will be there, I of course was lucky, the girl handed me my a yellow and brown paper.
it was the first time I saw the meaning of my name written and very specific, what matters is that at the top of the paper this line was there and I translate ‘do you know that in our Arabic language there are many names that have beautiful meanings?’
I do get a lot of complements about how beautiful my name is from strangers.

So Ha!

Where were we?

I got that paper with me somewhere but OF COURSE I couldn’t find it, got you this instead
From right to left (cause that’s how Arabic roles ‘Haneen Ibrahim’

This was actually attached to a bigger scroll with a poem on it, it’s from my college graduation, we all had one.

Nicknames. When I was little my father used to call me ‘hanoona’ or ‘abu al* hanoon’ it’s meaningless, just a way of showing fondness.
*abu al means ‘father of’.
My two older evil brothers though decided to call me ‘Hinna’ i.e. Henna yes!
imagine me with two small braids angry and screaming my chubby face at them not to call me that again but they would just keep saying it.
To make it even worse! MrJoySpoiler, the academic he has always been, invented a game of exploring what will happen if he changed the first letter (ح) into other similar letters . if you know Arabic you will realize this will end in a disaster.
There are only two similar letters to mine in the alphabet, these are (ج) = j and (خ)=kh
He changed (ح) into (ج) and the result was ‘Janeen’
Now try to imagine my dismay. 
Theses memories used to give me a really hard time in the past, the hypersensitive girl I am. Now, they make me laugh :D big time :D :D xD

Something extra. You know what I love about my name? it’s easy for kids to say, the ones learning to speak. All kids either say ‘neen’ or ‘haneen’ and here it’s the English sound ‘h’ itself because (ح) is a bet hard for them to pronounce.
I love little kids ^_^ my adorable one year old cousin was staying with us 2 weeks ago, and he caught my name pretty quickly.
‘Haneen’ also made me very famous at school because there was rarely any others.

Now laugh. I didn’t face any inconveniences in KSA, but when I came to Sudan my name got people confused.
You see, Haneen is mostly used by people in Al Sham (Palestine, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon) and by this I mean in the form as I described: a girl name that means yearning.
In Sudan though, Haneen is a boy name, because that form above is foreign for them, they use Haneen to meaning ‘kind and loving of others and practically anything else)
This makes the name for the girl ‘Haneena!’
See the problem.
When I say to people my name is Haneen, they would frown or furrow their brow and try to actually correct me ‘you mean Haneena’ they would say (as if I don’t know my own name) ‘Haneen is a boy name’ they would add.
‘no, no, it’s Haneen’ that’s me
‘humph’ they would humph, ‘that’s odd’
‘why would your parents name you after a boy’s name?’
I would get into the trouble of explaining the difference in meaning and it would still not help. I’m an Elian and that is it.
Then of course due to this misunderstanding my name would take all shapes and forms on papers, cards, certificates, you pick.
and of course the infamous ‘Haneena’
I take the card, take a look at it, stop mid way, return it to the person in the window,
‘um..excuse me, you wrote my name wrong, it’s not (insert any of the above), it’s Haneen.’
 The rest of the conversation will be like this;…well I already told you

Well. That was years ago, now my name is getting more popular here and people don’t get it mixed up anymore.

But it wasn’t all bad!
‘haneen’ happens to be a word widely used in songs, Arabic songs in general, and Sudanese in particular, that can tell you a thing or two about the people here ;)
what I loved the most about my sweet Sudanese people is that once they hear my name they start singing to me, and they can pull it from any song, when it comes to my name the sky is the limit.

I leave you with a song where my name is there in the middle, it’s for my No.1 singer Marwan Khoury, he’s Lebanese, and ‘Kul el Qasaed’ (all the poems) is the hit that made him famous as a singer cause he was already an established writer and composer.
Just listen carefully in the middle after the music takes a big shift then turns low you will hear it, it will be repeated don’t worry :)

Enjoy & see ya tomorrow


  1. I love your name and its meaning! Beautiful! I think we all end up nicknames we despise. Mine was my actual name and an interesting one (C.Hicken)...that eventually became the cool thing in Jr. High and High school. It taught me, it's all how we react that makes a name good or bad.

    1. Aw Thank you! and you are absolutely right about the reaction thing :|

  2. That's a great meaning behind your name, I'm a little jealous! Mine just comes from Laurel leaves (which are the wreaths ancient greeks wore on their heads, I think)

  3. Hi!!! My name is Haneen too! Thank You sooo much for putting the meaning of my name correctly! You don't know how much this much means to me! So sorry for my weirdness but- Al Sham refers to Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, AND JORDAN!! I am sorry but I am Jordanian and my country is always ignored :/. (Not that I am Patriotic about my country) but whenever people ask where I am from, and I tell them that I'm from Jordan they're always like, "What do you mean Jordan? You mean Palestine right?" nooooooo i dont mean palestine because thats not the only arab country in the world!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PS I LOVE PALESTINE THOUGH INSHALLAH IT WILL BE FREE !!!!!!! DONT GET ME WRONG so please add Jordan too as part of bilad-alsham because it is as much a part of al sham as palestine is!

    1. Hey there fellow Haneen ^-^ sorry for the mistake, I know Jordan is part of Al Sham, it wasn't intentional from my part, and there is nothing wrong in being patriotic by the way. Do people really don't know Jordan where you are? weird. Anyway thanks for the reminder.

  4. Omg i know how you feel we're kind of exactly the same my name is also haneen spelt the same way im from egypt its not ce to know there are different people in the world called haneen and to mention because i live in now in england in all schools i've been to i was the first haneen and only haneen they've seen cool right like i love my name i bet you do to

  5. I also have a korean name which is also very unique but also fits with haneen and that is nana people here also think it's weird but who cares its my name and i love it

    1. Hi Nana! well what do you know, this post proves to stay popular even after years, never knew my name was such a catch haha! thank you for your nice comment, always happy to meet a fellow Haneen :) and you got a Korean name? wow that is something!