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Your Weekly Diary: A Baghdad Graduation.

Paul Vassallo | 14:55 UK time, Friday, 26 March 2010

This week we have a diary comment from a faithful listener and supporter of WHYS, Lubna Naji from Baghdad. As many in the WHYS community will know we have followed Lubna's medical school training experience and her journey through the many tough times she experienced living in Baghdad, to finally arrive at her big week and day. Please continue reading Lubna's thoughtful and heart felt account of this eventful week.
WHYSlubnaflower.jpgSalaam to all of you guys from Baghdad, the city of pain, hope, and magic tales. Wow, what a week for me and all of my good friends and colleagues at Baghdad Medical School! Today was very special. We had our big informal graduation party at our college. The party was awesome, absolutely phenomenal-the title of our group at the party (which consists of 11 girls) was ''smooth talk'', and violet colour was our group theme for the party.


My fellow students danced, sang songs, wore costumes, and performed funny skits, the party started at about 7:30 am in the morning and it was continuing after we left at about 1:30 pm in the afternoon. Not only that, I got to celebrate my very special day with the people I adore and then later in the evening with the WHYS super marvellous team and amazing listeners and contributors, which was really cool.

As you guys may expect, things this week have been pretty hectic for me, I and all of my close girlfriends were so busy preparing for our very special day and getting everything ready for the party. I got to tell you guys, in 2006 and 2007 there were so many dark and desperate moments when I thought that this day would never ever come because back then our day to day lives used to be only about survival, keeping yourself and all of your loved ones alive. There's actually a huge difference between survival and having a quality of life that's acceptable, not great, but at least acceptable.

Now look at us, celebrating our graduation from medical school, who would've thought that something like that could ever happen to us? I mean us having a big party? I myself would never imagine, me partying like I did today, two or three years ago. Things are slowly and yet steadily improving in this country, which is a very healthy and encouraging sign, and yet there's still a lot that should be done. There're still many unsolved problems that must be dealt with promptly and quickly, otherwise things might deteriorate and collapse all over again, God forbid.

The most important thing is that there's this deep determination amongst ordinary Iraqis to go on with their day to-day lives and stick to optimism and faith in a better tomorrow despite all what the bad guys are trying to do, after all it's either our version or their version of Iraq that's gonna prevail eventually, and we just cannot let their version of Iraq prevail. So we're hanging in there, and hoping for the best to come, Inshallah.

At the moment, I am feeling extremely exhausted. I have slept for only 2 hours since yesterday, but it turns out that happiness and joy can keep you awake as much as sadness and grief. Tomorrow is a new day for me and for my Iraq the final results of the Iraqi parliamentary elections will be announced tomorrow by the Independent High Electoral commission (IHEC), should be very interesting to follow indeed, now I really must go to sleep.

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