War has shattered our society and put our lives on hold. Now we women are demanding that our voices are heard in building peace in our damaged country
I am a medical doctor and a proud Syrian woman. I was born and grew up in Damascus. We stayed for as long as we could but were forced out in 2012. We pressed pause the day we left. Since then, I have divided my life across different countries. My children are in Denmark and I work in Lebanon. I feel as if our lives are on hold. Many days I do not know how to feel. My only dream is to go back and start from where we left off. I am not ready to move on.
What people do not always understand is that the shock of being forced from the place you call home does not really ease over time. I love Beirut, but every single day I miss the smell of Damascus air. It is a physical ache that never goes away. I have become a different person too. The uncertainty I have seen and the thin line I have witnessed between life and death have completely changed how I think. I have less patience but more understanding. I know dozens of friends and relatives who have died and too many to count who have been injured. At least half a million Syrians have already been killed because of this war. That is not something any of us will ever forget.