I am a daughter of the rough, injured, and proud mountains and I am in love with wind, with
its freedom, its motion. I don’t know how to bring together my desire to be rooted like
a mountain and my longing to be free as wind.

I want to be stable and wise as the mountains of my homeland, but I also desire to be free
and traveling like the wind. I want to belong to the land, feel it under my feet, make my weight
and my influence known, sleep on the land, sit on the land for eating, chatting like people
at home. I also have a dream to fly away, to be free of bounds and belongings, to consider
the world my home.

I want to be reserved and mature, but I also love to express myself, to be childish, to dance
and sing and paint and see everywhere.

Mountains and the wind, conflicting metaphors, have come up in many decisions in my life and
will continue to affect my life. Mountains represent stability; wind represents freedom to
move. Mountains represent quiet and loneliness; wind represents the ability to join the crowd.
Mountains represent a desire to be influential and noticed; wind represents invincibility,
flexibility.

Coming to Smith was a windy decision; planning to go back and stay rooted in my country is
the mountainous part of me. The strong longing for wisdom and maturity comes from my love to
mountains and what I have learned from them; the fresh and alive yearning for being childish,
being carefree, being a traveler draws me to the wind.

I want to build a home, have children, be stable, have a job, enter politics, start a movement,
always reach high, reach the sky. I want to work for the best, be the mountain, be noticed
like it, be grounded like it, be a source of pride for my people, be seen by the world. I want
to be strong and rough and unbreakable and resistant like mountains.

I want to fight for change, make sacrifices, forget about personal pleasures, be a source
of hope and confidence for the lonely, for the oppressed, for the fighters of freedom. (In
my country, people take their sorrows to the mountain; they use it as a shelter, as a starting
point for resistance.) I want to be with people but for them, not only of them.
I love mountains: their height, calm, beauty, wildness, strength, wisdom, agedness and strong
presence.

But there is another part of me that wants different things. It is strong too. That part of
me is scared of being trapped — trapped in a career, in a house, in a family, in a political
game, in a duty. It wants to live free and almost invisibly. It is more like me. It is soft
and childish. It enjoys little things, and more than anything, it enjoys the feeling of displacement,
of leaving, traveling, seeing things, discovering things, living simply, living free. This
part of me is less confident and more scared. It is scared of loving only one person, one country,
one place, because it has seen loss of places, homes and people many times. It doesn’t
fit in one place anywhere, it fits in everywhere.

This part of me loves adventure, the unknown, the unseen. It is like a wind, it doesn’t
want to carry one single message, fight for one idea. It is afraid of being wrong. It isn’t
bound to anything, it doesn’t belong to anything, it pushes me to travel, it keeps the
yearning for discovery alive in me. It wants to be mixed with people and be flexible. It wants
to travel from village to village and be unknown but to know about people. It wants light,
it wants laughter, and the songs. It wants to play with wind, with water, with life.

It is playful, free and adventurous. It doesn’t want to be there for other people to
rely on; it wants to carry only its own weight. It wants to run away from war, from hardship,
to gardens full of flowers. It is immature, it is irresponsible, but it is also part of me.
I feel it.