Thursday, February 26, 2009

Remember this?


Monday, February 23, 2009

I teach I learn

I've always wanted to volunteer. Give back to society. Now that I have the time, I've made the first move. Fortunately, I was offered a slot to teach English to a group of troubled teenagers who are placed in a shelter home about 50 minutes away from my house. Distance doesn't matter. Where there is a will, there is a way. I decided to teach them how to speak simple English.

My first class started last week where I was greeted by 14 sweet girls with all kinds of history. I was taken by surprise when I saw a teenager taking care of her beautiful baby girl waiting to be taken away by a foster parent while another three girls told me shyly that they'll give birth in few months time.

I've entered into a new territory. I thought about my daughter. Her future, her dream….

Breaking the ice session was successful as most of them could speak English. Only a few had difficulties in pronouncing words. I asked them to introduce themselves and answer a question – What makes you different from other people. We had fun. One girl introduced herself and told me that what makes her different is she lies to everybody. I was taken aback but quickly recovered by giving them some homework.

The first session was a quick one as I don't want to pressure them. I bid them goodbye and prayed that they'll have the strength to live and be a new person. As I drove back, I kept thinking of them, their parents, their stories and the sadness in their eyes as they saw me leave. I heard one of them yelling for me to come back the next week….

Till then, MM signs off.

Saturday, February 21, 2009



What goes through your mind?
As you sit there looking at me
Well I can tell from your looks
That you think I'm so oppressed
But I don't need for you to liberate me

My head is not bare
And you can't see my covered hair
So you sit there and you stare
And you judge me with your glare

You're sure I'm in despair
But are you not aware
Under this scarf that I wear
I have feelings, and I do care

So don't you see?
That I'm truly free
This piece of scarf on me
I wear so proudly
To preserve my dignity...
My modesty
My integrity
So don't judge me
Open your eyes and see...

“Why can't you just accept me?” she says
“Why can't I just be me?” she says
Time and time again
You speak of democracy
Yet you rob me of my liberty
All I want is equality
Why can't you just let me be free?

For you I sing this song
My sister, may you always be strong
From you I've learnt so much
How you suffer so much
Yet you forgive those who laugh at you

You walk with no fear
Through the insults you hear
Your wish so sincere
That they'd understand you

But before you walk away
This time you turn and say:
But don't you see?
That I'm truly free
This piece of scarf on me
I wear so proudly
To preserve my dignity
My modesty
My integrity
So let me be

She says with a smile
I'm the one who's free

Sung by Sami Yusuf