“Sadaf! It means oyster. Just like an oyster protects its pearl, that is how my family protect me. It was given to me by my grandfather, Allah rest his soul in peace. It says so much about myself and my life. When I look in the mirror I see the girl I was when I was growing up with a baby face, long hair, and a petite body. I hate that word but I guess I am growing up. My
family is everything, I am what I am thanks to my family. They have given me everything, most importantly an education that most girls in our country aren’t privileged to get.
I was thinking about my choice of words and I found that my story can only be fully expressed in one statement; courage can be contagious, and hope can take a life of its own. These are the words I live by. Coming from a country where terrorism is the most prevalent activity, (social, economic and political) the move my parents took from Afghanistan to the United States of America was one of the most courageous and tactful decisions they
made. There is a double standard when they come from the ‘developed world,’ their intention is to curb terrorism and save innocent locals, caught in the crossfire between warring parties. I believe I am getting more socially aware and active involved.
Today I represent millions of Afghans struggling to get out of a war no one understands and hundreds of thousands all over the world who are yet to be accepted. It is, therefore, my intention to ensure the opportunities and wealth of resources at my disposal are not wasted. The immigrant in America have a difficult task. Other than my consistent defense of both intention and culture, I have to compete with being an American like my
cousins for education opportunities, and eventually jobs. When I was writing this I got an email saying that I got accepted at the university that I was dreaming when I was in Afghanistan three years ago, I still can not believe this. Isn’t it awesome? That dreams come true one day! I dreamed it and I did it.
I care about the life of Afghans, because for a country to prosper there should be equal rights for all, education forms the pillar for the development of every nation. I feel fortunate to live my dream and as a girl I know my rights and I know how to stand for them, and also be able to contribute in both social and economic activities one day for the development of my country Afghanistan and help eradicate poverty.
I believe the future holds so much for each one of us if we remember this; courage can be contagious, and hope can take a life of its own.”
Sadaf Ghiasi, Punjshir