Hello everyone! I know it has been quite a while since writing in the blog; almost a month in fact. A lot happened in the past month, between beginning to facilitate a dialogue on inter-religious/racial relations, traveling to home and Qatar. The last event above all had a profound impact on my thinking about the future in pretty much every aspect of my life. Seeing countries like Qatar and the UAE, where it seems like everyday there is new building going up or a new institution being established, it was eye-opening and brought about some reflection on my life in the US. I mean, yes, I still fundamentally believe that I am blessed to have all the freedoms that I do in the US and that means a lot to me, but when it comes to being able to pursue a career that brings about dignity, a wider sense of purpose in life, and the ability to meet my financial obligations without fretting over every dollar I feel like the US is lacking. Looking at the media and elsewhere, it seems the finger continually points to Congress, which is doing little to prevent the country from plummeting off the fiscal cliff in January. As someone who is fortunate enough to have full-time employment with benefits I am living comfortably currently, yes, but if we do go off the cliff next year I am not sure I will feel the same way. Just yesterday in a work meeting program managers were discussing the inevitable cuts in budgets and staffing that would come as a result of falling off that cliff. This news made me think that a contractor like myself would probably be on the chopping block and frankly, that scares the shit out of me a bit – I still have lots of student debt to repay, rent to pay each month, groceries, healthcare, etc. Forget about having fun! Out of all of this I am now beginning a new job search both domestically and more so, abroad – I feel a mix of emotions thinking that I may need to leave behind friends, family, hobbies in the US. It may seem like this is a lot of doom and gloom, but really I think it is a beautiful opportunity to pursue obtaining a job that allows me to feel fulfilled. Deep down I have known that may arise a point where I would have to weigh my options and maybe sacrifice certain things I am comfortable with something greater in the long run. In my eyes everything that has happened recently is God showing me a new signpost and it is up to me to take heed or ignore it; I am going to take heed and not doubt it. I am also thankful that my experiences with the DIY culture of hardcore punk music further supports this outlook and in the end, even if things do not turn out totally positive lessons will be learned and that is valuable in itself.
Salaams for now.