Welcome to ALYN’s World
Saja Nashif

I'm Saja, 30 years old and the mother of 2. I came to the nursing profession from a personal experience that taught me how close the nurse is to the patient in any situation. When no one else can sit next to him. The nurse is there to hold his hand.

I work as a nurse in ALYN’s rehabilitation department.

Here, in every room, there is an inspiring story, and behind every door, rare relationships develop. I am happy to share one of them with you.

In one room lay two children, Omar and Elay. Each coming from a different place... very different place.

Omar, 4 years old, arrived from Hebron in a complex condition, after being seriously injured in a being run over by a car.

11 year-old Elay, after leg surgery, arrived from Ashkelon, needing a long rehabilitation process..

Omar's mother, a Muslim woman, with a head covering, sat next to his bed, on the left side of the room. Sometimes she cried because of his difficult situation, sometimes she smiled, but she always had the same look, an uncertain, sad look, full of questions

ELAY's mother, a Jewish woman, full of energy, constantly tries to be strong but sometimes she also gets tired. She sits next to her son on the right side of the same room and devotes her time to being with him in exercises, does not give up on him and works hard for him to progress.

The two mothers were separated by a closed curtain, and many invisible barriers.

In rehabilitation, the conflicts are of a different kind... In rehabilitation, the people tend to fight less with each other, they are too busy dealing with the situation, pain, hard work, moments of crisis, celebrating moments of  of their child’s progress, even (and perhaps mainly) in the smallest details .

What is taken for granted, is not obvious inside the ward rooms. Here, being able to communicate with a 4-year-old, or that an 11-year-old child will be able to walk on his own is not a given,

בIn the room, from behind the curtain, each mother heard what was happening with the other.

One day while both laughing at a joke told by another child, their eyes met with a look that spoke without words. A look telling of a heart full of tears behind the laughter.

From that moment a special language was born, even though Omar's mother does not understand Hebrew, and Elay's mother does not know Arabic. They communicated a little in English and mainly in body language, listened to each other and started motherly conversations between them - about the difficulty, pain, hope, and fear.

They did not give up on the conversations, they used mobile translation apps, or through therapists who speak both languages.

This bond passed to the children, elay spoke to Omar many times and complained to him during the busy days, and Omer for the first time smiled in response to Elai's voice.

On August 10, during the Dawn operation, Elai's mother returned from a weekend in Ashkelon and said that a missile had fallen in the parking lot of their house. A minute later, while standing in front of their room, I saw a strong hug between them.

They let go of their anger, fear and worry in a true embrace that broke all prejudices, stigmas and generalizations.

After that, when you entered the room, you saw that the curtain between them was open.

when I passed room #10, I usually saw the four of them sitting together, like a family, each of them making sure to call the team whenever the other needed help, and both doing their best to help the other not break down.

Here humanity is above all, here it is unconditional love, here it is ALYN.

In my eyes, ALYN is not a hospital; it is a house full of love without borders, ALYN house.

The rehabilitation environment offers an opportunity for people every to be exposed and get to know people that are different than them, learn about themselves and the other. For me it is a huge privilege to be part of this environment.

These two mothers left me with lots of hope and optimism for a better future. They taught me that all that is needed is to dare and to open the curtain.

I believe, now more than ever, if you choose to see what is common and not what is different, you can learn a new language... a language of peace.