It’s his birthday, but instead of allowing us to celebrate him, he’s celebrating us. He took my mother to the Dead Sea this weekend. He rented a car for me today. He bought the boys a new screen.
It amazes me how a person can give so much while expecting nothing in return.
I had the happiest childhood. I don’t ever remember a time when I felt like my life was missing something. Love was granted so generously. Fun was holy. Trips on holidays, even if they’re only to nearby towns, make my sweetest memories.
One of my few very early memories involves him tossing me into a pond. I remember my mother would be freaking out in the background but I would only giggle and go back for more. Fast forward a few years, early 90’s, before the globalization of Saudi Arabia, and I have a bagful of clothes on my bed from dad’s latest trip to Holland. During my early teens, it was a habit for dad to take us to Fuddruckers for lunch every Friday, and we would just sit and laugh and talk about the past week.
When I graduated from highschool, he came with me to JU and helped me fill out the application papers, which were probably the first things I’ve ever had to fill out in Arabic in my entire life. That day, I applied for Fine Arts and Design, and when I went to give in my application to the registrar, he shook his head and told me with my grades, he refuses to let me apply for Fine Arts, and that he will put me in under Architecture, “Which is the same thing 3amo, but for smarter people.” My dad took it from there, although he was probably the person who was the least keen on the idea of me studying what I do.
That’s who he is, and that’s why I am who I am. The picture above is during my 6th birthday. The pictures below are of trips during short vacations. We would drive around for hours listening to Majida il Roumi and Kathem Il Saher. We would play a game called “Shu Lon 3aroosti” and he would tell us about Nables.
Happy birthday. With much love.