Here’s to the women who gave up their friends, family and the comfort of their homeland to travel to a land completely foreign to them. To the women who took a risk moving across the world, knowing that one day it would be the best choice they made for their children.
To the mothers that threw shoes at us when we didn’t do well in school. To the mothers who insisted that an education is far more important than any diamond ring. To the women who dragged our asses back to the Middle East each summer break to ensure we would be well versed in our language and culture.
To the women who taught us how to apply kohla and hiz like it’s nobody’s business. To the women who defined quwa by taking no one’s shit and not giving a shit what people think of it. To the women who leave many and long voicemails, some referring to you as “habibti” and others as “ebn el kelba.” To the women who will call you over randomly just so they can dal3ek.
To the mothers who are and always will be our number one fans. To the women eating bizeer in the bleachers, screaming “YALLA GO HABIBI GO! AIYWA! GOAL!” at our basketball games. To the women put themselves through physical pain because they know that shushbarak and wara2 dawali are our favorite dishes.
To the women who insist they know everything and if we don’t tell them they will find out one way or another… and they always do. To the women who say “allah yb3ed 3nak shar wlad il 7aram” because they truly worry we’re prone to doing drugs and joining a gang.
To the women who bless us when we leave the house, get out the shower, get a hair cut, eat, or do anything else uneventful. To the women who use texts for good – “you want me to cook ma7shee or kufta?” and evil- “I’m looking at the phone tracker now, you’re not in the library wellak.”
To the women who endured hardship and heartbreak, leaving a broken land, in pursuit of attaining a better life. To the women who have turned their hardship and heartbreak into wisdom for us to live by every single day.
To the women who have to tell every waiter and check out clerk that hummus is from their homeland and not Israel. To the women who are persistent on educating the entire North American continent that Arabs are not the villains that the media portray us to be, then invites them over for lamb and shay.
To the women who defend us in front of our evil aunt even when they disagree with us, because they’re just hella loyal. To the women who are hovering over our heads when we have the flu, praying and attempting to shove yansoon down our throats. Thanks for being an Arab mother in America, we know it’s not easy. Thanks for being our mothers.
To my mother, Sana, who reads my Scoop Empire articles and has not killed me.
Originally published on Scoop Empire May 9, 2015