My life has two chapters, 26 years in Syria and 10 years in the US. And it feels like that I left a 26 year-old man in Syria hanging. There's a place in my heart that had stopped aging at 26, it's a big place and it got lots of good memories, even bad ones. But that place feels so real to a point where the kind of memories don't matter, it's the warmth, the strength, the pride, the authenticity and most of all the love it brings, that matters. I love that feeling and I visit that place everyday. So if you tell me "Move on", I tell you "I don't want to, because my past is my playground, I go there when I'm tired, I go there when I'm happy and when I'm sad. I will always visit it because if feels good, it feels right, it feels home".
When you hear an 80s song, or see a picture that has a funny outfit or hairstyle of yourself, before you try to hide it, think of how you felt when you were listening to that song, when you were wearing that outfit and that BIG hair, connect for a second. Enjoy the memory.
Today is the Good Friday, today is a day I spend physically in the US but mentally and emotionally in Aleppo, and if I don't do that, then today is like any other day, so to make it special, I visit my playground.
I left a 26 years old man in Aleppo when I left my home town for good, I protect him and I let him remind me of those 26 years every day. Every old picture, every old song takes me there, and I let it do that because it keeps me going.
That's whom I left behind, and I miss him.