GRADUATION SPEECH;

Here is a graduation speech that nobody asked for, one that my University would never care about and one that has been long overdue. Regardless here I go…First and foremost before I get started I want to say I hope this diary entry in some weird way motivates, inspires, and plants a seed of passion and achievement in anyone who is reading because trust me If I can do it honestly anyone can.

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MOTHERS DAY;

“What if there isn’t enough time to give her what she deserves do you think if I begged the sky hard enough my mother’s soul would return to me as my daughter so I can give her the comfort she gave me my whole life" - Rupi Kaur”

There would never be enough time in my mothers life that I can give back to her. There would never be enough moments in her life where I can do everything for her. Before I was even born she did everything for me, before she knew who I was she killed her entire life for me. A life that took her away from her home, took her away from her family and pushed her to the other side of the world just for a new outcome in her children’s lives.

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WALK;

A simple walk that doesn’t last a lifetime, but one I will remember forever. A simple walk like this is all I need to know that even though I was not born here, I birthed my love here. Even though I was not born here, I birthed my dreams here and my fight here. That these paved roads that are meant for sidewalks, these homes that have no backyard, and the people that can become family is beauty that I want to find. Walks like these allow me to understand that even though I did not live here that I will start my life here.

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TRUTH;

Try and remove borders that are clearly visible, erase history that has been clearly written about, and destroy mountains that echo Kurdish language. Try and destroy villages with the over-used excuse of terrorism, kill children and identify them as terrorist, jail journalist and identify them as supporters to terrorism.

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KurdistanAlêfreedomComment
FINGER;

We look to history books to take a glimpse of the past hoping that we can read about truth and how our people lived during certain time periods. Hoping to grasp a single moment that has been stopped and a single moment that provided freedom and strength. We take in each word as pure truth and each author as pure knowledge, we put these words into our mind and wait for the subject to be brought up with friends/family.

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NAME | ئالین

my name, my beautiful Kurdish name that was rooted in culture and history. My name, Spoke on the tongue of my mother and father for the first time when I was born.
ئالین

my name, my beautiful Kurdish name that planted the first seed in me that would grow to be my Kurdish identity. A name that spoke meaning on the culture of my people, the meaning of Kurdish traditions.
ئالین

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BLOOM;

Let the flowers bloom in between the layers of the earth like the layers of your skin. let the flowers bloom in cracks and creeks of neighbourhoods like its hiding from the destruction of human kind. Let the flowers bloom with hope and confidence like it will last forever and never fade away. With petals that can fly after the death of a flower to find a new place to collect its power.

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HOMELESS;

“You were homeless?” is what I get asked every time I allow my story to be heard. “You lived under a bridge for 3 months?” is what I get asked when I try to explain to people where I have come from. The difficulties of hiding what you have been through and how that has shaped you has been a battle of past and present. It has been an internal battle of past and future and what my life will be if I continue to answer these questions to those english-speaking Canadians who have no idea in the  what freedom means.

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KNOCK;

Let those who wish to knock on this door be of those who accept me and my family. Let the knocks of those who wish to enter a small home in the basement be of acceptance and love. As I fear for my life every time I accept those knocks into my home. As I fear for my children if I allow those knocks to be heard. I pray that these knocks who want to visit my family of four are those of community and family. Are those that are happy that I along with my husband were able to escape genocide and those rotten apples.

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ECHOES;

I drive to the mountains when I want them to hear my pain, I run toward the mountains wanting this pain to go away.  There's something absolutely beautiful and stress-free knowing the only thing surrounding you are the mountains of Kurdistan. And so I imagine those stress-free moments and decide to run toward the mountains to echo my pain, my sorrow, and my love for Kurdistan.

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FORGET;

The act of forgetting is the scariest thing to see and experience. I'm scared to forget my childhood and moments that I want to enjoy and relive all over again. I’m scared to forget such incredible and emotional stories that my parents chose to tell me about their past. I'm scared that I will forget to mention every beautiful thing about our Kurdish history to my children.

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STATISTICS;

I was born into a world hearing constant statistical research about my life and the outcome of it. I grew up into a society hearing about these statistics based on my education and the future of it. I was told year after year how unlikely it was for me to even think about post-secondary education because my parents were refugees and were immigrants to Canada. I was told year after year how unlikely it was for me because my parents did not have an education and therefore it was less likely for their children to have one. 

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HAIR;

 "Kurdish women embody the strength of long hair. Every strand being made to protect made to grow, and made to know. I realized why I feel unquestionably comfortable with my long hair and why my mother never wanted me to cut it. It's a part of me and my history" (03.06.18/Instagram) 

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STRENGTH;

In a second my mother's life went from the Kurdish life in the mountains of Gundê Eradina to barely escaping for her life against those rotten apples. In a split second, my mother's life went from being surrounded by her family to escaping toward what was internationally known as the borders of Turkey. 

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WATER;

I always saw WATER as a friend. Something that the mountains would produce and give to my family when need be. WATER that followed a path from the tip of the mountain to reach my family in Gundê Eradina.

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MOM;

Mom has always been a distant word for me, a word that seemed so foreign that I could not label you as because you were much more. You weren't "Mom" as my friends in school would call their parents, but you were always Dadê or Adâ. You went by words that were rooted in a variety of stories that categorized your life, you were rooted in culture, and in a powerful language that created these words to describe everything you are in Kurdish.

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Alê Comments
HALABJA;

Babû (father) why are my eyes itching,
please tell me why are my eyes turning red?
Babû why do I keep coughing,
Its hard to breathe Babû please save me.
Babû why can't I feel your warmth while in your arms
why is your loving grip slowly disappearing?
Please tell me you're still breathing Babû..
Babû speak to me...

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AlêComment
APPLES;

The smell of apples can be a sign of spring and new beginnings. The smell of apples has been a sign of life and tasteful creations of God. 

Though, our apples, our smells of those rotten apples were signs of a chemical storm dropping into a town of people. Our apples were the images of babies who died in their mother's arms, kids on the floor feet away from escaping, and men who all they cared about was protecting their own. 

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AFRIN;

The olive trees have been known to grow. To grow with strong roots, strong branches, and even stronger stem. The olive trees have been known to grow. To grow with incredible texture and a strong taste. A taste of resistance, freedom, and strength. 

These olive trees are not trees to declare war. These olive trees are not the trees to freely destroy without consequence. The people who planted these trees that handpicked a land that is free allowed these trees to grow as strong as they could. 

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