After what feels like ages away, I am back at home. My parent’s home that is. Where my history and my life stare me in the face. Where we go to taraweeh prayer in the mosque where I grew up. Where I attended my first Sunday school classes and dreamed about crushes with my girlfriends. I vividly remember one Sunday where we said with wonder, one day we are all going to be married. What a big word that felt like!
I want to write this entry and I don’t want to write this entry. So, mostly I won’t. Perhaps it is my Paksitani background but there are certain things about home that are sacred. That you only write about and talk about with the people you love, trust and care for.
But the superficial things, those are easy to write about. Home has so many comforts. There in neatly filed binders, my mom has put all my awards. Lined on the shelves are trophies from all the different parts of my life. There are my diplomas and graduation pictures, one after another. In fourteen months we will add one more insha’Allah. There is a binder in which my mom has clipped out every newspaper story I have ever been in or written.
I notice that my life goes through periods of intense work and dedication and then I fade away, doing nothing academic or for social welfare. Perhaps we all need periods of renewal and growth, so that we can go back and face the world again. Unfortunately, my last period of inactivity has lasted about seven years. Lately I have been reading, writing, and digesting in an obsessed way. I have probably learned more in that last three to five weeks than I had in the five years prior. In reflection, law school was such a period of apathy and stagnation in personal growth that I feel an incredible intensity to make up for time lost.
This is what home shows me. It provides me a window into a place where I have existed, where I was something better and makes me believe that I can be that again. It is where my parents proudly display my accomplishments, more fully convinced than anyone in the world that there is absolutely nothing their daughter can't do. It is where my dad looks at me in wonder when I come down the stairs to go to a party and says, “That can only be the daughter of a Raja.” It is where, despite all the confusion and miscommunication, I know what love is and I know that I owe so much, if not all, of my success to my parent’s sacrifice and blind faith in me and their full conviction that I can really do anything.
So, I won’t be back here for at least fourteen months. The last time I left for Turkey I cried as we pulled the car out of the drive and I cried for many nights after. I am scared to leave everything again. It is made even harder by the fact that this time I will be getting on the plane alone. That I will face these coming days with a new strength that I will have to find. But that is the price we pay for wanting to do something, to be something and to carry out a promise we made to ourselves and to our world. In this great month, I ask that you please keep me in your prayers, so that God may help make that which is hard, ver easy.