Song Inside the Sounds of Breaking Down

This is the story I think she told me. My husband went every first day of the week.  He tried to get met to go with him, but I didn’t want to.   Our families are both traditionally from a believing background, but I didn’t want anything to do with it.  Traveling speakers would come … Continue reading Song Inside the Sounds of Breaking Down

Arrive with Peace

I have been waiting to hear those words.  Their meaning: You are home, we are glad. Your absence was felt.   Your presence matters.   Alhamdulillah al salameh.  The literal translation is along the lines of, “Praise God you have arrived with peace.”  It invites the response, Allah yesalamek: “May God give you also peace.” But my ears have been listening for this … Continue reading Arrive with Peace

Promise to Break

The air came like heat waves from an oven.  Only no chocolate chip cookies were baking… just me. I was directly in front of my fan. It was my first night home after a month of travel outside of this country, and my goal was to save air conditioning until I had finished unpacking.  I’ve got to get … Continue reading Promise to Break

Drunken Drivers, Engagements, & Other Misunderstandings

He honked the horn of the bus.  I ignored him, and opened the trunk of my car. He smirked, gestured, and beeped a second time. I hoped he wasn’t trying to get my attention.  For women in this part of the world, it’s not unusual to receive some level of rudeness from random guys; but this bus … Continue reading Drunken Drivers, Engagements, & Other Misunderstandings

He Sees

Soundlessly, she sat beside us, crying as her sister Sammi told her tale.  “A European couple offered me a job nannying their children,” she said.  “But then they decided that they want someone else, someone who does not wear a headscarf.” Sammi spoke in a matter-of-fact voice, like the entire affair was of no consequence.  However, we all … Continue reading He Sees


I sat awkwardly on the couch in the living room.  My friend Sammi’s mother and sister had kissed my cheeks in greeting, and then withdrawn to the kitchen, oddly quiet.  They drew the curtain closed behind them. I was not invited to follow. Alone, I looked at the green balloons strewn across the floor.  The … Continue reading Vulnerable