I am a human being who lives in a place that I am fond of. During my teens, I thought a lot about “why just me?”. What entitles me to sit here in a privileged position, when the rest of the family doesn’t? But gradually as I grow older I can’t help wondering if I am also losing something. In Iraq they have each other and the family. The societies who experience the most adversity also seem to be the societies with the biggest social cohesion and those who survive the best. Even if it is hard, they stick together and make the most of life. In a different way to the rest of us. What I needed as a teenager was a close-knit family
Back in 2012, I spent 4-months in Jordan as a Red Cross volunteer. During a break I went to Baghdad to visit my family. In the bus back from Iraq I was awoken during the night by some commotion. There was a roadside bomb right underneath our bus. Everybody panicked. Our driver then chose to step on the accelerator.
Three seconds later the bomb blew up right behind us. Later I saw in the news that fortunately there had been no casualties. In the aftermath of the explosion I thought that regardless of where you come from, if your country can’t guarantee your safety, then it is not a country for me.
Not even the military people who stood there pointing down at the roadside bomb were able to protect us. This was when I relinquished my faith in a homeland. I don’t have one, and I do not regard it a loss. I see myself as an individual living somewhere I care about, so I am committed to contributing to this place.
30 years old / female / single / pharmacist / Roskilde / Hedehusene / From Iraq / Came to Denmark in 1992 / Residence permit in 1993