From Access to Belonging – On the ADA and the Muslim Special Needs and Disability Community’s Journey

President George H.W. Bush signing the American Disabilities Act into law 25 years ago.

This weekend I was honored to participate and speak at an event organized by the Interfaith Disability Advocacy Coalition -- "From Access to Belonging: An Interfaith Service Celebrating the Progress and Promise of the ADA." It is part of several events happening in Washington D.C. and around the country to honor the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disability Act, a landmark piece of legislation. It's interesting that the ADA, which holds most of our public life accountable … [Read more...]

The Srebrenica Genocide and the Bosnian War – Never Forget

"Srebrenica massacre memorial gravestones 2009 1" by Michael Büker - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

To God we belong and to God we return. Please take the time to say a prayer, for these men and boys, and also for the survivors. So many lives cut short (in the span of 3 days). It's especially breathtaking (as in, I can't breathe) when I see DOBs so close to my own. While I was taking exams and learning how to drive, they were murdered in cold blood, a deliberate genocide. Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi rajioon. – Hind Makki, Patheos Muslim blogger at HindtrospectivesTwenty years ago, like H … [Read more...]

How Young is Too Young to Fast?

Kids and ramadan_resized

She sat on the sofa and refused. I tried everything I could to convince her, but she kept refusing and refusing and refusing.You're not ready, I told her. You're too young. It's too long a day. I love that you want to, but not today. Next year!And that's when she started to cry. Why are you making me stop when I really want to? And then she said the words that I have said to her so many times. This is between me and Allah. I want to fast. I know I can. So don't stop me.And so I wiped … [Read more...]

His Theatrical Debut – On Inclusion and Plays in Autism Land

Image from the theatrical program for "Caps for Sale"

In flipping through his yellow binder, where his teachers and I do our daily communication, I found it.A simple flyer with a simple announcement. But it was everything to me. Everything.We are putting on a play! ********** In our parental autism journey, there came a point when I learned that the so-called "normal" experiences and rites of passages of childhood are not always meant to be -- and that was ok. I didn't feel it so much in the early years after D's diagnosis, when he was in … [Read more...]

Book Review: “undivided: A Muslim Daughter, Her Christian Mother, Their Path to Peace

book cover

My life had changed. My Christian daughter became a Muslim.And my life and every single thing about life just flat-out flew apart.So here I sit today, ten years after my daughter made her announcement, staring at my keyboard in my belabored home office -- which also is a wreck and needs decluttering and an overhaul. Still, even in this mess, I commit to speak truth about the biggest mountain in my life that has yet to move.I wish my daughter wasn’t a Muslim.Wrong to say? P … [Read more...]

With Head Bowed, I See the Light


[A] person whose head is bowed and whose eyes are heavy cannot look at the light. -  Christine de Pizan, Ditié de Jehanne d'ArcWith his head on my lap as we sit in the back seat, we drive home.He is heavily dozing under a medicated sleep, and the husband and I wonder how we are going to get him up the front steps into our home. Why not drive around some more, run some errands if you want, I say to my husband. We'll stay in the car until he starts to wake up.So that's what we do. … [Read more...]

Mommy, Can I Draw the Prophet Muhammad?

From, Muslims protest against Pamela Geller's "Draw Muhammad" contest by drawing  Muhammads they know (not the Prophet).

Wendy Thomas Russell over on the Patheos Atheist channel has a blog called Natural Wonderers, which is about "raising curious, compassionate kids in a secular family." She occasionally runs a series called "Mommy, What's that?" that is "aimed at giving secular parents some simple, straightforward and open-minded ways to describe religious concepts." She approached me and some of the bloggers at Patheos Muslim to take part in a round table discussion around this question that a child may ask: … [Read more...]