Growing up in Lebanon in the 1980s was no easy feat. It was a time of conflict and chaos, with war raging throughout the country. But for me, it was just the norm. I was used to moving from town to town to avoid the fighting, but the war always seemed to follow us. Despite the turmoil around us, my family and I found stability in our tight-knit community in Hamra, Beirut.
I remember walking the streets of Hamra as a child, seeing people from all walks of life coexist harmoniously. Religion didn’t matter here; everyone was welcome. It was a place where tolerance was not just a word, but a way of life. This sense of unity and understanding in the midst of war has stayed with me throughout my life, shaping my worldview and personal values.
But life wasn’t always easy, especially when it came to my education. My parents had a strong desire for me to study business, despite my passion for history. I struggled to reconcile their expectations with my own dreams and aspirations but ultimately ended up studying business.
After graduation, I made the difficult decision to leave Lebanon and pursue work opportunities in Africa. It was a challenging and eye-opening experience that taught me a lot about the world and about myself. I spent 13 years in Africa, working hard and making a life for myself. But eventually, I felt the pull to return to Lebanon, if only for a little while.
I worked for a short time in Lebanon before once again setting out on a new adventure, this time to the United Arab Emirates. It was there that I found my true calling, and my passion for writing and sharing my experiences with others was born.
Looking back on my life, I realize that every experience, every challenge, and every triumph has shaped me into the person I am today. I am grateful for the struggles and hardships that I have faced because they have given me the strength and resilience to overcome whatever obstacles come my way.
Now, as I write this blog, I am excited to share my experiences and insights with others. I hope that my story can serve as a source of inspiration and encouragement for those who may be going through similar struggles. And I hope that through my writing, I can continue to spread the message of tolerance and understanding that I learned growing up in Hamra.