to you, my sisters who have sons or daughters with disabilities

A Trip To Yemen………………………..edited by myself (original by Emily Perl Kingley)

Asalaamu alaikum sisters. I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a daughter with a disability – to try to help others who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel inshaAllah. It’s like this…
When you’re going to have a baby, it’s like planning a fabulous vacation trip to Saudi. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans… Mecca, the sea front of Jeddah, the huge masjids. You may learn some handy phrases in Saudi dialect. It’s all very exciting. After several months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go.
Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, “Welcome to Yemen!” “Yemen?” you say. “What do you mean, Yemen? I signed up for Saudi. I’m supposed to be in Saudi. All my life I’ve dreamed of going to Saudi.” But there’s been a change in the flight plan. They’ve landed in Yemen and there you must stay.
The important thing is that they haven’t taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place full of fitna, arrogance, and unfamiliarity. It’s just a different place.
So, you must go out and buy new books. And you must learn Yemeni arabic. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met. It’s just a different place. It’s slower paced than Saudi, less flashy than Saudi.
But after you’ve been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around. You begin to notice that Yemen has mountains. Yemen has the sea. And Yemen even has purple chickens (yes – they have coloured baby chickens in the souk in old sanaa, trust me on this inshaAllah). But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Saudi, and they’re all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life you will say, “Yes, that’s where I was supposed to go. That’s what I had planned.” And the pain of that experience will never, ever go away. The loss of that dream is a very significant loss, and yes, there are nights you cry and some days you feel overwhelmed.
But if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn’t get to Saudi, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things about Yemen. So you stand back, find strength to increase your eman, and say “Alhamdulillah. I am in Yemen.”


Filed under beckwith-weidemann syndrome, daughter, health, reflection, religion, spastic diplegia cerebral palsy

4 responses to “to you, my sisters who have sons or daughters with disabilities

  1. fouzia was as if i was reading my own life story, what a well written piece 🙂 . My sonis 4 years old n for all his short life i wondred what was wrong with my son , till recently doctors said that he had cerebral palsy. They nnever diagnosed this from the beginning . i am still reeling from this shock and looked up the internet for hidaya , for strength. May allah help you and me to overcome ths , inshallah .

    • Salaam alaikum uhkti,
      I am wondering where you live, as my husband is from yemen (which I also call home) but we are currently in canada and as soon as my daughter turned 2, they recognized she had this due to the tone and tightness in her legs. If you do not mind my asking, where do you live? I may be able to research some recources for you…..JazakAllah khair.

  2. ƒяєє∂σм ƒιgнтєя

    As Salam O Alaikum Warehamatul ALLAH Wabarakatoh all of you
    Zawjna have you found treatment of this (Spastic Diplegia) ?
    If you have in Islamic way must inform me

    • There is no cure islamic or otherwise (unless by the will of Allah) for SDCP. My daughter receives physical therapy, occupational therapy and most of all Dua’a for her CP. There is a doctor who is going to be at the therapy center she goes to who may request her to receive botox injections to release the tone in her muscle of her leg, but we need to see him first, he comes a couple times a year. We more or less just go along and pray istikarah when new treatment comes out and hope for the best from Allah. Alhamdulillah she is able to pull herself to stand position, walk with the help of a walker, and she has recently at 2.5 years old, started to walk along the furniture, holding on to it, and can balance herself in a stand without assistance for a few seconds at a time. She is making progress but it all comes in time.

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