Hello New York!
I didn’t feel like a stranger or a traveler in USA, I felt I am among family and old friends. My family is bigger now with World Pulse team in it. I met a number of World Pulse correspondents in New York, they were colorful and each woman was amazingly unique, each woman has a story of strength and determination that inspired my visions. New York seemed a city of Yin & Yang, the shadow and light, full of different and contradicted forces pushing toward each others. NY is full of overwhelming energy and so was our tour. I met World Puls’s big chief Jansine; I was amazed and inspired by her passion for World Pulse and her vision, a strong and a gentle woman warrior. I met the two women who will be with me in the tour, my friends Neema and Stella, whom I have deep respect and share with them so many things in common, one is speaking with our own voices and trying to make the world hears us.
When I was in school I was fond of the school’s morning broadcast, I never had any problem to stand in front of many people and sing, talk and even organize a contest. Somehow, I started to lose this ability of facing the world fearless and joyful after I went to life’s school. In New York, my first two days were spent in discovering the true me, to emancipate my real essence which was hidden inside my own Labyrinth, to start breaking down fear and go back to the time when I was a little girl that once faced the world with courage and happiness. A very wonderful person coached me to do so. Sometimes I felt that my heart was hanging by a thread and I had to hold it with my hands before the thread cuts. Sometimes the unleashed memories went wild and I had to stay whole and firm to defend my current being and presence.
My first event took place at UN office where a number of women from UN Women and other organizations came to listen to our stories and contemplate on the solutions; especially solutions can be generated by the web 2.0 and social media. It was emotional for me to speak about the situation in Syria, remembering all the people and places I love, and is in turmoil now. I was concerned that among my emotional upheaval that I would forget what I want to say, but I carried on and the thoughts continue to spring in my mind, the upheaval brought ideas and words up to my head and tongue. Then we went to central park where I found half of New Yorkers jogging there. Every city should have a huge park inside it, for the ecosystem in the city and for our human nature, I believe too many cement can deprive us from our feelings.
The next day we were part of an event in NYU. The audience was bigger and more diverse. There were students, philanthropists, World Pulse members and women from all walks of life. The three of us delivered our messages and opened many eyes and hearts to what women and communities suffer from in other parts of the world. We spoke how many women used social media to develop their societies, to spread awareness and empower other women. Neema and Stella shined in their presentations of their visions and extraordinary experiences. As for my vision, it was to be able to use social media for reinforcing human rights and empowering women in Syria, and my hope of using social media as a tool for reconciliation and healing process in my wounded country. At the event I met with my mentor Sarah, and it was a warm reunion, there were many things to talk about and I felt that I am finally meeting a dear friend that I lost long time ago in a past life and found in this life. I met many interesting a compassionate people, made new connections and gained more friends. I met a lovely lady called Ellen, a believer that can transform a dream into matter, I felt that she is like a feather on a clear and serene water surface, so graceful and leaves just the perfect touch of unforgettable impact. I also met Kim the sweetest women in the event. From her I learnt that I have a responsibility to think of the effect I leave beyond my realization.
Our event in the Clinton Global Initiative was phenomenal; we met many wonderful and powerful women. We had a discussion about the digital media and role of women. The discussion turned into a debate that was full of energy and ideas. Our presentation was attended by women from the Newsweek Daily Beast, CNN, Eileen Fisher, intel, to name some of the well known names. I met with a woman that had an idea about how to bring medical aid to Syrian refugees, and I will do everything in my power to peruse this idea. At evening we went to the Nobel Peace Prize women Laureates event and attended a discussion on rape in conflict areas like Congo, Haiti and Syria. Many amazing stories about women’s solidarity and creativity to face terror were told, many solutions and demands were called for. After the meeting I met with Iranian Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Shirin Ebadi, an inspirational woman who fought for the rights of the people in Iran all of her life. This was our last event in New York, the city had to let us go to Portland to brake its silence and raise our voices.
Portland is a lovely city that needs a hearty journal. It has something spiritual. It’s definitely the nature and the good people I met.