What are your worries?

Posted on October 3, 2012 by


What are you thinking about as you leave your home for the day and make your way to work, school, or the grocery store?  You are probably thinking about making it to your work meeting in time with the crazy traffic, or maybe you are thinking of your next homework assignment, or maybe you are stressed about getting the groceries and making supper before Tommy has soccer practice.

Yes, our busy, American life is full of things about which to constantly think and worry.  But let’s take a look at what people in Afghanistan are thinking of in the same situations as Americans, when they leave for work, school, or the market.

Let’s say there is an Afghan dad who has encouraged his daughter to pursue her education.  This is exciting for both the family and the little girl, however it is also very brave, as many Afghan’s feel that “females should be forbidden from school—as they were during the Taliban’s rule.” Those who hold this conservative view have resorted to threatening, attacking, and killing these school girls to try to make their point: that they are “opposed to educating females.” Just last year there “were over 185 documented attacks on schools and hospitals…” Those females who courageously make their way to and from school are told to keep themselves covered and to walk quickly with their head down. Other than this advice, they have no other form of protection; all they can do is hope that they will survive the day.

Afghan females silently making their way to school

So back to the Afghan dad, who is now on his way to work after warily sending his little girl into this unknown war-zone as she makes her way to school.  What do you think he is thinking about on his way to work this day? Well, he is probably not worrying about making it to his meeting on time. His thoughts are likely consumed with worries of his daughter and her well-being and safety.

And that daughter, who is so bravely taking the unknown steps to her future, she is not worried about the next homework assignment, but rather if she will be bombarded on her way to class or if the school will be bombed later that day.  The amazing thing is that even if she does arrive safely at school, she doesn’t dwell on the crazy life she is living, but rather is so grateful and thrilled to be learning to read and write for the first time.  She is still able to appreciate the opportunity of an education (even though masked in turmoil) unlike many of us here in America.
Grateful learner
Lastly, what do you think her mom is thinking as she goes to the market for groceries?  She is probably not worried about supper plans. She is definitely thinking about how her little girl is going to safely make it home from school that day. The walk to and from school is the most dangerous part.

So now I ask a final question: What might it feel like to live with this constant worry every day? The worry that even if you do make it through today, what will tomorrow bring? Will your child still be alive? Will you still be alive?

As Americans, we live in a mighty good place.  Yes, we have worries too, and yes, we feel like they are the most GIGANTIC, OVERWHELMING, LIVE-CHANGING circumstances ever, and they very well may be at times.  But if we could take a step back to compare our situations with those in Afghanistan right now, how “big” would our worries seem then?

-Kelli Remboldt





Posted in: Islam