March 31, 2019

“We miss opportunities every day, but that should not mean that it will be the end of the world”

“We miss opportunities every day, but that should not mean that it will be the end of the world”

During my life so far, I have been denied many opportunities just because I am a woman. I have lost hope; dreams have been dashed and I have had moments where I found myself completely devastated. But I never let that affect me in any way.

However, there will always be that one missed opportunity one never forgets. We can get over it but we can’t forget it. That missed, opportunity happened to me a while ago and I would like to tell you about it.

It happened when I had finally been accepted in a university in Turkey, And the best part was not that I had been admitted but that I had managed to convince my parents into letting me move and live abroad to continue my studies. This was the biggest challenge I had overcome, getting THE permission! The parental permission, you know what I mean, the one that is almost impossible to get and of course it made a huge difference because it meant that my dream had come true.

You know we have never had a female family member who had traveled alone to a different country before, I would be the very first in doing it. I had taken care of everything, all my papers, and other files, everything was sorted out. This was a dream come true! I always wanted to study abroad because I find it very exciting and adventurous.

My dream had finally come true, I was going to Turkey! Then something happened.....

Just before my flight my brother who had returned from Logar had suddenly managed to convince my father into forbidding me from leaving. His convincing argument was simply that he believed women living apart from their families in a different country could easily take the wrong path. His argument was enough to overlook my achievements and hard work. I felt as if the ground beneath me had opened up and I was swallowed under.

I remember that day clearly, some of my classmates who were also admitted in Turkey called me and urged me to come before the flight departures. That growing feeling of disappointment and devastation ... I can barely describe it to you. I took a deep breath and told them that I was not allowed to go and that everything was over. What happened that day was probably how destiny wanted it to be and that’s what I tell myself whenever I feel that I have missed an opportunity. Because you see it is all about your choice of perception. How you decide to move on afterward that makes a big difference Turkan Jan.

I am very happy and proud of where I am today, if I had moved to Turkey, I would have missed the opportunity to work for Zan TV which is a ground-breaking news channel because it is an all-female news broadcast launched in Afghanistan. The purpose of this concept is to increase the presence of female journalists in Afghanistan. For now, my future plans are to apply for masters in Kabul university.

I would like to say one thing to my sisters and that is to never lose hope or be demotivated you are the only one who has the power to choose what and who you want to become.

Khadija Salehi, 23
News anchor, Afghanistan