To talk about the reasons why I came here and how the decision to move from modern Europe to traditional Berber lands was made, leads directly to faith and trust in God.
When I look back to the many fundamental changes that have occurred in my life over the past thirteen years, I cannot explain otherwise than with predestination and divine guidance, mashaallah.
Much of it happened very fast and unexpected and the decisions that led me here were founded on trust in God, both, deliberative, well-thought-out and planned but also intuitive and driven by a strong inner urge.
It all began in winter 2001/02, right after the shocks of 09/11, when we went on a field trip with the south-German university where I studied interior architecture at that time.
I came to Morocco as a student to learn about the ancient architecture, about Islamic art and old building techniques like adobe, mud and rammed earth. The trip was intense and made me want to come back.
I then had the chance to live in Marrakech and to do an internship there for six months. During that stay my inner longings were confirmed and the most important changes happened to me, subhanallah:
I learned more about Islam and became a Muslim,
my husband and I got to know each other and decided to get married,
and the desire to live in Morocco was much strengthened by the experiences in Marrakech and then even reinforced by the discovery of the homeland of my husband, alhamdulillah.
Back in Germany, despite all the difficulties that occurred and all the warnings and advices I received, it was so clear to me that I have to move to Morocco right after finishing my master thesis.
That time in Germany was everything but easy, not for my family, but also not for my husband and I. There were many discussions, questions, doubts and some fear, feelings of loneliness and tears. But there was also a deep sureness and the feeling of being guided.
What helped during this period was prayer, my newly gained faith and a strong inner certainty about what I have to do with my life, alhamdulillah.
In autumn 2004, after the birth of our first son and my graduation, we bought an old van, finished all papers, finally packed everything and said goodbye to family, friends and Germany, ready to start a new life as a young family in Morocco.
Fate led us into the city of Fès, where we both worked and tried a living.
But we quickly felt uncomfortable and alienated by city life, stuck in the busyness of monotonous office work, with real life very much limited to the weekends.
We saw no future here, we were not living according to our values and the urge to be free and independent, to live in the mountains and in nature became so strong that we decided to take the plunge and to move to my husband’s family.
We had no idea how to earn the money to live and realize our dreams, nor how our son and I would manage the traditional life in an extended family. I did yet not speak any word of the local language nor have I ever lived so simple and sparse before.
But once again, despite all doubts and fears, it was the inner confidence that I will be able to manage my life whatever may come; and it was divine guidance that let us take this new step into the unknown, into the adventure of my life. Allahu akbar. …
[to be continued]