Forget About Goals and Dream Big

Just a few months ago, a friend of mine, owner of a prosperous ad agency with six-figure revenue, told me proudly that she doesn’t have dreams. She has goals. I understand where she’s coming from…


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Strings of Lostalgia

“A Tale of Two Homelands”

In the hushed obscurity of dawn, I would often find myself strumming the strings of my dambura, its familiar sound serving as a mournful hymn of lostalgia, evoking memories of a life now hidden behind the hazy curtains of my past. I was once a simple bank teller in the bustling streets of Kabul, thriving in a realm of order and routine, diligently counting worn bills and tendering change to those who entrusted their wealth into our vaults.

Afghanistan was a tapestry of colors and sounds that unfolded like an intricate symphony, a vibrant testament to the resilience of humanity. The smell of freshly baked naan from the neighborhood tandoor, the sound of children’s laughter echoing through the narrow lanes, and the grandeur of the distant Hindu Kush mountains painting the horizon; they all were integral threads in the fabric of my existence.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Yet the shadow of war fell upon my beloved homeland, darkening its radiant beauty. Uninvited, it crept into our lives, twisting the rhythm of our days, and casting the shroud of fear and uncertainty over our hearts. With every roar of a fighter jet or rumble of an armored vehicle, dreams shattered and lives altered irreversibly.

And so, it was with a heart weighed down by fear and sorrow that I found myself a displaced soul, seeking refuge in the grand expanse of America. I became a reluctant traveler on a journey that ripped me away from my roots, my heartstrings still strumming the melancholic notes of my homeland.

Yet, America opened her arms to me. I was embraced with warmth and compassion, and slowly, I found myself entwining with the rhythm of this new land. I found work, not as a bank teller, but within the bustling hum of a local grocery store. The job was different, yet somehow familiar, reminding me of the human connection that was the essence of my work back home.

Photo by Katie Moum on Unsplash

Still, in quiet moments of solitude, I would drift back to Kabul, a wanderer in the corridors of my memories. My fingers would instinctively reach for the dambura, the echoes of its melody serving as a bridge between my two worlds. Every strum was a narrative of loss and longing, of survival and resilience, of the human capacity to adapt and endure amidst life’s profound upheavals.

As my dambura would sing in the stillness of the night, I would feel a part of me waltzing through the streets of Kabul once more, a silent spectator watching a life that had been. Each note was a bittersweet whisper of what was and what could have been. Each melody, a testament to a journey imprinted with the profound hues of lostalgia.

The dambura, my companion in solitude, became a symbol of my resilience, a testament to the universality of human struggle and endurance. It was through its strings that I found the courage to keep going, to persist despite the currents of life that threatened to pull me under. The music became my balm, my solace, my silent yet eloquent outcry against the cruel whims of fate.

As dawn would break, I would return from my sojourn into the past, my heart yearning for the land I once called home, yet filled with a renewed sense of hope and determination. The strings of my dambura would echo with the lingering notes of lostalgia, a haunting symphony that bound me to my past, yet propelled me towards an uncertain yet hopeful future.

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