Sunday, June 24, 2012

the beginning

being that today is the day that the egyptian president was announced, i felt like today was an appropriate time to start blogging. i have been thinking of starting this for many weeks now and i'm still not sure what i want this blog to become, but i do know that i have some things to say. whatever comes out, i just want to be sure i have a record of my thoughts and ideas.

i was born in egypt, in cairo to be exact. i grew up in america for most of my life; i came here when i was about three. i could spend all night (literally) talking about my life story and all the details that go along with that, but i'll keep it to the point of this post.

tonight mohammed morsi was announced as the president of egypt. whether or not he was actually the one that won the election by way of votes doesn't concern me much, because although i care about election fraud, it is what it is (funny how i used to hate that phrase), and egypt will announce whatever man they want to announce.

as a coptic christian, which is both a religious and ethnic minority, it scares me that the Muslim Brotherhood has won political power. that's about as simple and clear as i can state my feelings. we are ten percent of the population, yes, but egypt has at least 80 million people. that means that although there is a significant amount of us, there is also a lot of them.

side note: i am not a person that likes to create an in-group/out-group. i don't like making muslims a different group of people, or singling them out, or separating myself from them. i love everyone, i respect all beliefs, and i defend everyone's right to live as they please (more or less). but it's clear that politically, muslims want different things than us. especially those who support radical islam, which is what the MB is. many muslims also do not support their politics.

i say all this to talk about this: that while in the car on the way home from a friend's house tonight, where we watched the news coming out of egypt, my mother said "something doesn't feel right about egypt. i feel like it's not my country anymore."

now i don't know your relationship to your mother, or where she is from, or what she holds dear to her, but i do know that hearing that was one of the hardest things i've ever had to hear. my own mother, who is egypt to me, feels like she lost the country that she was born and raised in. my mother, who is egypt to me in the way she makes her tea, the way she laughs when there are guests at our home, the way she speaks to us in beautiful arabic and raises me and my sisters with her own hands. my mother is my country: "the house does not rest upon the ground, but upon a woman" [mexican proverb]. since i came here when i was young, she has been one of my strongest connections to egypt. i can't have the land, but i can have my mother.

it's hard enough to deal with all of this on a daily basis. even before the revolution, i had a hard time dealing with it all. i am not fully egyptian nor fully american; i do not fit in fully to either country but rather float between the two. i have two different sets of everything: beauty, standards, lifestyles. my mind speaks in two languages. i understand meanings in two forms. i have a choice of two paths at every decision i come to. i am a binary. i live in twos. my life is ruled by duplicity, and making things work is a matter of always finding a balance. live in moderation, my parents taught me.

i just wanted to get this out there. i wanted to release it. i wanted to find a place to put my mother's burden other than inside my own heart, weighing on my ribs, where it squeezes out all my air. i do know one thing, though. i will never let go of egypt. things like this are taken away from you the second you let them go. the second you release it, you relinquish control, and nobody is responsible for that but you.

1 comment:

  1. beautifully said, i can totally relate to this due to the political corruption that has taken place in my homeland since i left. hang in there, egypt will not be lost, not if there are still egyptians who think like you and hold their country in such a special place in their hearts.