to my refugee family

My heart is so incredibly sad.
I know the world is a terribly complicated, dangerous place. I know that answers aren’t always black and white. I know. And honestly, I don’t think I’m ready to try to articulate all my thoughts on the Syrian refugee issue itself just yet, mostly because I don’t think I could do it without getting too feisty.
However, I do want to say this…It’s not that I don’t understand the fear of ISIS. I myself am scared of ISIS. But the way that so many are speaking of refugees like the other, like monsters, like a disease, has left me physically sick to my stomach, left me feeling like I can’t breathe.
Because to me, they are not just refugees. It wasn’t refugees with whom I’ve shared delicious and strange meals; it was family. It wasn’t refugee children, full of potential and sass, with whom I’ve played in the heat of summer; it was my children. It isn’t refugees telling me with kindness in their eyes, “It’s okay, Alissa, it happens! Do not worry!” whenever I’m new at my job and am not quite sure what I’m doing; it is my grandfathers. It wasn’t refugees to whom I explained the term hangry and with whom I bonded over feeling it; it was my grandmas. It isn’t refugees with whom I’ve giggled endlessly over who can make the silliest face; it is my friends. It isn’t refugees proudly telling me they got that job for which we worked so hard to practice interviewing; it is my brothers. It isn’t refugees confiding in me their deepest dreams of becoming a doctor someday so they can help the poor; it is my sisters. It isn’t refugees telling me about their relatives they miss and worry about oveseas; it is my dads. It isn’t refugees beaming with an ever-growing confidence as they begin to master English; it is my mamas.
So to my mamas, my dads, my sisters, my brothers, my friends, my grandmas, my grandfathers, my children, I say through tears: I am so, so sorry the world has been such a cruel place to you.

1 thought on “to my refugee family”

  1. I think this is an instant of people choosing power and their own beliefs over love and acceptance. Until we can change this the world will never change. Politics and diplomacy doesn’t work. It takes a figure or movement to change this. MLK Gondi are two examples of this. We no longer have this in our generation. The world will always need this type of prophet to balance the “good” vs “evil”.

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