Breaking Stereotypes is an online series to show off ordinary Arab women who are changing mindsets. Today’s post is special to my heart because I am talking about a woman who inspired me to be me today! An Iraqi woman who fought the odds to become successful! My grandmother, Faiza!
My grandmother was the 1st woman in her neighborhood to study medicine, I remember hearing stories about how much support she get from her father, how she challenged everyone to study!
In the age of 18, she got married, she told me that she cried in the beginning, she didn’t want to leave her study, She wanted to be a DR. My grandfather on the other hand, was a man of science, he let her continue her studies till she got her Phd in Bacteriology.
In her years in collage, she had 2 kids and waiting for the 3rd. She was a mom, a Dr and a wife.
In the age of 25, both of grandparents went to England to finish their studies. At that time, she had 3 children and a full time job. They wanted to make something of theirselves and their daughters.
After they came back to Iraq, She started working in , they created their own life with their 3 children. She started teaching in the university and that’s when number 4 came along, she was pregnant, teaching and taking care of 3 other little girls.
my mom always used to tell me: ” I have no idea how she manage, I can’t manage 2 kids”. I believe she was just super women.
like any other woman, she faced a lot of problems, a lot of people gave her a hard time, she was kind, pure but we all have enemies.
By the 5th child, life has torn her apart yet she was strong, she took care of her girls, gave them the best education possible. She made sure that her name wasn’t going to waste.
At the age of 60, War happened. I can’t tell much about how she felt, my grandmother loved Iraq with all of her heart. The hardest thing was when she had to leave. Babo (as I call her) used to open the news and cry about the tragedy of Iraq.
Babo moved to Amman, she used to love life, always ready to travel, to share some positivity in the world! No one forgot her beautiful smile walk down the street.
In 2016, she was diagnosed with brain tumor that took her life only 1.5 months after. It was one of the hardest thing in my life, to say goodbye to a strong and an amazing woman like her.
Even after her death, she took care of her girls, she worked so hard in her life to make a difference and she made it in me.
You will never hear her story in the media, yet she is the perfect example of a strong Iraqi woman who broke stereotypes!!
Follow this link to check the 1st episode Breaking stereotypes-Fatimah Alawwad!