At my first sight of life in a refugee camp, I could feel more secure by filling my stomach, from climbing an active volcano to digging into mice holes searching for the ones that are alive, not worried about them biting me, but trying to do my job carefully as catching them alive was the only way I could make money by selling them to the boss, mice buyer, who to me was like an icon of peace in my stomach because by the time I could deliver mice alive, he would pay me, and I was able to feed myself… that time, security to me was 'to satisfy my hunger'.
Back to my country, a post-war period, living in a place covered with land mines all over my favorite play grounds and all forests where I was fetching firewood, knowing that by any step I make I could lose my leg, by any touch I could lose my arm, by any movement I make unconsciously I could be transformed into invisible pieces and be lost, with all radio adverts warning us about not playing with mines, and moving around all places covered by Danger of Death signs all over and over, security to me has henceforth been 'to be mindful'.
Growing up and becoming an adolescent girl who values beauty as it’s defined by the external world every day, the one for which I would rather be hungry than missing it, was my hair, straight, stylish in the line of what trends were there in hair styles; among my insecurities was not being able to do so… until the day I had to feel insecure beyond being insecure, sleeping in an open space, 12 Celsius degrees, with no cover, the whole night with no sleep, remembering all my ups and downs, all the things I’ve been able to overcome from the inside ground of mice holes to eating other rodents to starving for long time that I couldn’t even remember, but all of them didn’t make me feel insecure than that one night in the middle of nowhere simply because that one day, while in the evening, the hands of my hair maker in the middle of my head, I realized that I didn’t have enough money to pay for that specific hair style she was making for my hair, and that was the time everything changed, the conversation changed from laughter to how might we make sure I don’t leave without paying for their service… the decision was simple, sleeping in that place and wait for the next day to get someone who could send me extra money to add on the one I carried and be able to leave that place… it was a night full of thinking, feeling the loneliness and hearing imaginary terrifying voices from everywhere, the most insecurity I ever felt was that mental one… That’s the time I’ve cut my hear, felt so good to be the master of my own beauty... and since then, security to me is 'self-acceptance, confidence and living a life out of worries about what the external world think I should do with my life, to be able to be on top of my life, my own decisions for my future'.
By not only being a child of my family, but also a child of the community, shifting from one home to another, my worries involved having a hygienic and safe toilet and not risking getting a bunch of boys to harass and almost rape me at each time I need to do my basic hygiene needs, worried to meet this same guy standing in the middle of my way to the toilet, hence all I fought for was to live in a house with an indoor toilet, which could always sound crazy to my friends, but that was the only way I could feel my inner safety; that way, security to me became 'to be able to afford my basic physical and mental needs'.
All along my journey, despite all sort of insecurities I felt, the common one was not being able to tell my worries without being judged, harassed or controverted… I only feel at peace when I know that I can find an empathetic ear ready to listen, listen and listen to me. And that way I always provide the ear of my heart ready to listen to others effectively because I know how it feels to not find a listening ear and an understanding heart. For me 'peace comes from the connection in social values and satisfaction in my emotional needs'.
For a stable and peaceful society that I want, it has to be made of individuals with social values and principles that are traditionally upheld and passed on within a family… Therefore I chose to use Kosmotive, my organization, as a medium to advocate for 'Love, Trust, Empathy, Tolerance and Altruism' as basic values from within families for a peaceful society I work for.
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