Mothers of Syria; I am so sorry

Mothers of Syria; I am so sorry.

I am sorry that you are going through what is understandably one of the worst times of your life. I cannot imagine your circumstances. I have never in my life wondered about where I could find safe shelter, where my next meal was going to come from, where I was going to go to sleep that night or if I would live to see the next day. And I have definitely never had those fears for my daughter.

I have lived a very sheltered life. I have never known homelessness or legitimate fear for my life. I have never seen people roam the streets of where I live with guns and weapons. And I have never witnessed another person die in front of me.

I remember once in university, a professor said “you’ve all won the lottery of life by being born in Canada.” I didn’t fully understand at 18 years old what he meant by that, but I do now. I hurt for you. I am sad for you. It must be the most helpless feeling in the world to not be able to provide a safe environment for your children.

What makes me ever sadder is how some people don’t want to help. I’ve seen ignorant comments from people online, who say that it’s your mess and not theirs. They think that you’re going to come to our country and somehow take from them.  But I don’t see it that way. I know you didn’t ask to be born into a country that is in turmoil. And I know you didn’t ask for your children to have to see such horrors at such a young age. I know you didn’t ask for your babies’ innocence to be taken away from them because of war. And I know that you wish like crazy that you could somehow close your eyes and make it all disappear. You just want to live somewhere safe and peaceful. I get that, I really do.

When you come to Canada, prove those people wrong. Show them that you aren’t here to take away or to try to change things. Instead, show them what you have to offer, what you have to give. Teach us about your culture, tell us your stories, and share your courage. Let Canada and the world know that the Muslim culture is not about violence and that you are able to co-exist peacefully with non-Muslims. Show us all what strong and resilient people you are.

I want you to know that I am just one person, but I am a person who believes in change. I will sign every petition, write as many emails as I can and do everything in my power to make sure you and your families have somewhere safe to go. I don’t see you as Muslim or Middle Eastern or terrorists or anything else. The only thing I see you as is another human. Another mother. A mother who is in a really bad situation and desperately needs help, from someone…from anyone.

I will welcome you to my community with open arms. I will help you in any way I can. I will reach out to you and do anything I can to make sure you feel safe and at peace. I will embrace you and your family and help you navigate your way through these very hard times.

Why? Because you’re human. Because you deserve to live somewhere safe. You deserve to have peace and harmony in your life. You deserve human rights. From one human to another, and from one mother to another, I want you to know that I am so sorry for what you are going through. And if there’s anything I can do, I’ll do it. Because human rights should be for everyone. Always.

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