My father works as legal counsel for the state of Washington, and he has always wanted me to get a grasp of what his work involves. At a very young age, he taught me the value of relationships and how you can use them to improve the lives of others.
Having a Palestinian background and a much-needed knowledge about the affairs of the country, he was called to attend a hearing about the Middle East peace process. I, being only 15 at that time tagged along because not only was it summer break, but I was bored of being left alone inside the house with all the nannies. All my friends were on vacation as well, so I asked my father if I could accompany him to the hearing.
Our chauffeur drove us to this grand building in the city. It has a Romanesque facade with massive pillars. We had to take several steps before we could get in the building and once inside, I noticed that the place was immaculately clean and a tiny bit intimidating. There were scattered plants here and there which made it a little less austere.
Once inside I came across a young man about my age, and we started to talk about random topics. However, mostly we talked about our school life and the friends we had. It was also surprising to discover that we had a few of the same acquaintances and he even knew a friend of a friend.
The Palestine Affairs Council incidence is something I will never forget because it makes me realize how fortunate my family is to be able to live in a place which allows you to live with all possibilities. Although the topics they discussed were vague to me, and somehow I cannot fully grasp, it also gave me a good idea of what is happening within those specific regions in the world. How the countries involved have a hard time understanding and setting their specific boundaries and how delicate the atmosphere is.
Being observant like my father, one thing I noticed during the Palestine Affairs Council was people and how they acted, what they desired and how they treated each other. It makes me think of how we’re all so much alike and what we long for all across the globe is pretty much the same. I hope life and relationships in the Middle East improve over time. I know it’s been a very long, painful journey and much sorrow has been experienced on both sides of the conflict. I am committed to doing what my father taught me so many years ago and leverage the power of relationship to make whatever difference I can in the lives of the people I come across. I hope you find some inspiration to do the same.
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