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Aida Hamoud Abdullah Albajl

- I Became a Creative Writer -

Before the training, I used to ask myself what creative writing meant and how I will become a creative writer. I was afraid of the idea, for I have left reading and writing behind for a long time. As days passed, the fear went away and I began to feel a sense of pride and accomplishment for being able to write and work collectively with everyone. Although I was not able to draw, I still saw the value of drawing in the work my peers did.

It is such a shame to be proud of something that you did not do yourself. Today, I feel personally proud of everything we wrote and of what my peers drew. Happiness to me is not in treasures and money. Happiness to me is all this imagination and collective work.

- My Friend’s Story -
A Short Story from An Interview

Ghadeer is 23 years old. She is very joyful and hardworking. She lived with her family in a humble house with a small garden full of trees. She used to sit in this garden to play and study throughout her childhood and until she went to college. The war broke out in the middle of her college years. Ghadeer and her family were forced to leave their home and their city.

All of that made Ghadeer feel deeply sad, especially when she continuously missed her home and garden. Despite all of that, she still continued her studies and graduated. Furthermore, she began learning new skills that she needs in order to pursue her higher education.

- On 19 Days of Creative Writing -
Thoughts on the 19th Day of Creative Writing

These days meant so much more to me than I expected. Each day brought me sweetness and bitterness. It brought me hardships and extreme happiness. Everyday, I discovered things I did not expect. This training brought us out of the situation we were in after losing all that was beautiful in our lives.

At first, I used to think of what I could possibly write or draw. I was concerned; for it has been ages since the last time I read or wrote something. Thankfully, day-by-day, my mind began to open up more and more. I began writing what comforts me and brings me joy. The sweet friendships, the trainer and the training helped me not make what hurts and makes me cry control my mind. I thank God for every step.

At times, I used to feel some difficulties during discussions. I was afraid of speaking. I did not want to make mistakes. I was afraid of being mocked or perceived in a bad way. Yet, all this love and all these kind hearts made me continue even when I made mistakes. Sadly, I was not able to draw. But the girls’ optimism and their ability to draw for the first time ever gave me hope.

Each day began to be sweeter than the one before. Differences in opinions always ended up well and even created more beauty. Days began racing towards the end. I will miss this daily gathering that we have had for almost a month.

What a great accomplishment is that of ours!

- Six Images from Memory -
Thoughts that Followed a Walk in the Neighborhood

I saw a massive mosque with a yard full of green grass. I recalled the day my friend and I were fasting and walking till sunset was approaching. That day, we sat in that yard waiting for the prayer to call. I kept walking till I saw a big sign that says “ The Academic Entity for Higher Education”. I wish I could pursue a master’s degree. I do not think I can do this now. University tuition fees are too high, especially at universities that ask for fees in US dollars. I saw a small bus that had women who asked me for directions. They were looking for a wedding hall nearby. I showed them the way, which made me feel like a guide. A while back, I was also lost while trying to find the same hall these women were looking for. After that, I saw a scared little girl trying to cross the street. I went towards a shop that sells birds. The sound of the birds reminded me of the fajr/morning prayer. I saw two older women. Each one of them was complaining to the other about knee pain. I thought of how we would turn out when we become their age.

I thank God for everything. Dear God, grant me what I wish for.