Since I have started blogging, I do not recall that I have talked about anything very personal. But with all the amazing events unfolding in Egypt at the hands of the millions of the brave and beautiful Egyptian men and women of all ages, religions, social classes and education levels, it has been difficult to hold back from expressing some personal emotions that have been recurring on my mind for the last 3 days.
I have lived most of my life in Egypt in my parents house about half a mile from Tahrir (Liberation) square. It was the center of my activities, going and coming from middle and high schools. It was where I met my closest friends every weekend for a decade to sit at one of the cafes there to talk about every thing: politics, physics, medicine, religion, the future of our nation and everything else in life.
It was the place I passed by as I walked or drove to medical school and to our social and sporting club. It was the place where we met on days when friends got together to go on a picnic or to the movies.
I was even born in a hospital about a mile from the Tahrir square on the western side of the Nile, across from the Tahrir Square. And, very likely, my parents drove through Tahrir square with me when I was one day old to go back home.
Today, a revolution reshaping the face and future of Egypt is happening very close to where I spent most of my days and nights in Egypt, and all I can do is watch it on TV or online. The fact that I am not there with them is shaking me so hard.
I am fantasizing about being there now. I have never regretted leaving Egypt and I have built a good life in my new adopted country. But last week's events will keep me asking myself: Should I have stayed there to be part of those glorious events?
I know one thing: If I were in Cairo last week, I would have spent every moment of my day and night at Tahrir square. Last night, while journalists were interviewing some of the brave Egyptians holding there positions in Tahrir Square in the face of the security forces thugs: the sound of repeated gunfire filled the background. Every shot I heard shook me as if I were there, and I wished in my heart to have been there taking the chance with them on my birth land and its future.
None of those who were killed or injured was more deserving of death or injury than I do. None of their families deserved to suffer the pain, anxiety and the sense of loss than my family does.
I know for sure that my father and my mother would have not for a second doubted that I should be there. For them, that would have been the place to be, no matter how big the risk was.
I know also one more thing for sure. My father passed away 5 years ago at the age of 80 years. If he were alive today, he would have been there with the revolutionaries, possibly to be the oldest amongst them. It was the dream of his life to see Egypt become what it should be - a dream that the revolution is bringing closer everyday.
He would have loved to take a bullet instead of one of the young heroes. He would have loved to die there. He would have died on the happiest day of his life.