On the morning of my 39th birthday, I was grateful for two things: my hair and my boobs.
There were other things too, of course – the way Sam buried his little face in my hair at 5:30 in the morning. The way he and Drew planned how to surprise me with breakfast and cake and presents.
But my hair and boobs were on my mind the most because in the week leading up to my birthday, one friend had to shave her head and another friend found out she might be losing her breasts.
I sort of hate to feel gratitude like this—it seems like such a selfish feeling. Like by being grateful I am saying that I am grateful that YOU have this horrible disease and not me. I am grateful that I have my hair, but too bad about yours. That’s clearly not what I want to…
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In this beautiful piece from Matter, Mujib Mashal takes the reader to the Afghani airwaves, into the hearts of its listeners. From the complications of arranged marriage to online dating woes, the youth of Afghanistan have a lot on their minds. DJ Ajmal Noorzai solemnly shares their stories on his program, The Night of Lovers.
When the show first aired, callers were reticent to speak honestly. But slowly, with Ajmal’s guidance, they opened up — so much so that stories had to be debated before they were aired. In one, a young girl named Sameera sobbed as she recounted falling for a man other than her arranged spouse. Honor is everything in Afghan society; it is a highly shameful act for a female member of the family to engage in relations of any kind with a man before marriage. Producers had to be careful to safeguard Sameera’s identity.
Sameera had been engaged to…
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