Some events have been manipulated for safety reasons!

 

I will now tell you about the obstacles we faced in Saudi Arabia. When David arrived to King Abdulaziz Airport of Jeddah, I was waiting for him by the gate. Nobody from my family knew that I was going to pick him up. I was warned not to, because police are everywhere, and in Saudi Arabia, men and women, who are not related, are subject to arrest if seen together! Him, being a foreigner, was subject for deportation.

I want you to imagine this with me. The man I love, who I haven’t seen in seven months, walks out of the arrivals’ gate. And I do nothing but smile to him. My heart was beating fast for seeing him. I wanted to jump on him and hug him tightly, but I couldn’t!

We rushed outside of the airport, looking for a cab, when a private driver offered to drive us. I, knowing well that they’re 10 times pricier than cabs, agreed! And we ended up paying 350SAR for a regular 50SAR trip! I just wanted out of the airport as soon as possible. When we arrived to his hotel. I refused to check in with him. He had to do it by himself. It was going to be the biggest scandal of my life if I went into the room with a man I am not related or married to. The hotel might have called the police on me! I would have been jailed. My family would have disowned me!

Five days passed and my family still didn’t set a date to meet him. He is just wandering the city of Jeddah by himself not knowing anyone but me. I couldn’t go in and out as I pleased because my family knew that I would go meet him. They, being the Saudi family, feared religious police and the consequences. During those five days, members of my family visited us, trying to convince me, mom and my dad, that this marriage should not happen. That David is not worthy of me. That I am Muslim and should not be migrating to an infidel land!

One day we had the biggest fight ever in my house. Everyone is yelling. My aunt – a powerful woman in a powerful position is threatening to stop me from traveling. My sisters are yelling. I am yelling. My mom and dad, the passive people they are, are trying to please everyone. I learned very valuable lessons from that day; [1] Unorthodox events won’t happen without disagreement, and [2] In times of conflict, wear a smile and nod at people and eventually, do whatever it is you wanna do!