Dave's Corner of the Universe

Where strange fact and stranger fiction collide

How a Muslim Immigrant Saved my Life.

I never thought I would publicly talk about this, but two and a half years I suffered what could only be described as a nervous breakdown. It culminated in a traffic accident that I caused, fortunately no one was hurt, but I was a wreck. I would lay in bed twenty two hours a day, only sleeping about one of those hours. I couldn’t go to work, I would break down in tears when I tried to talk to anybody. My mother (The other heroine if this story) dragged me to a doctor, and I began to get better.


In an attempt to get back my life enrolled in Lewis and Clark’s College’s therapy program. It is administered by grad students, taped and reviewed by faculty advisors. My therapist name was Zarah. About half my age, she had dark skin wore a headscarf and spoke with Middle Eastern accent that betray she was not born in the United States. Zarah would not have been my first choice for a therapist, because what I needed to say would have been easier to say to a male therapist.  But I had nowhere else to turn too.


For six months I unburdened myself to her. My fears, my doubts, my humiliations, my sins and what I was desperately holding on to. Besides receiving and giving the Birds & Bees talk, she was the first one I ever had a discussion about sex with. She never judged and tried to show me, the me that others saw.


When there was no David, she gave me the tools to rebuild myself.


She never spoke of her faith or forced her beliefs on me, but her dignity and appearance made it clear what they were. We could related each other because our basic, morals, understanding and beliefs where similar. The God of Islam is the God of Abraham.


She was my angel of light, when I was in a sea of darkness. Now there is a voice that wishes to extinguish my angle’s light. To bar Islamic immigration to the United States.


Yesterday on the radio, I heard someone expressing that they feared that Muslims, where commanded in the Qur’an to travel the world and spread Islam. They cite the so called Sword Verse, the fifth verse of the ninth surah (Surah at-Tawbah) of the Qur’an. This is a specific order given during a war, to end the fighting or three months, then return to hostilities if a truce wa not worked out.. The Old Testament is full of cases where the Hebrews relay what happened during their wars, and the New Testament commands Christians to spread the gospel.


The west tends to think that Muslim’s want to spread Islam by the barrel of a gun. The vast majority of the Islamic proselytizers, chose to share what they believe by showing how their values and beliefs have brought them happiness, just like Christian lay missionaries do. If someone wants to show the fruits of their faith by serving the community, and trying to help people, I say go for it, be they Christian, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhist, Wiccans or any other belief system.


Make no mistake we are a war. We are war with militant Islamic fundamentalism. No one is against taking precautions, no one is saying stop vetting, and no one is saying stop taking the war to the enemy. But what I am saying is don’t make it so that hardworking moral people can’t come here and bless us with their presence.


Zarah came to different land, she suffered oppression and threats, to help me, when no one else could reach me, and for that I am entirely grateful.



11 comments on “How a Muslim Immigrant Saved my Life.

  1. Mei-Mei
    January 29, 2017

    This was beautiful, thank you for sharing.

  2. Harry Calnan
    January 29, 2017

    Wow. What a powerful story. Thanks for posting this. I am deeply moved.

  3. Brian Bixby
    January 29, 2017

    These days, courageous to come out in support of American Muslims, and to admit to a breakdown. I’m glad the two came together to help you become better.

  4. leggypeggy
    January 29, 2017

    Thank you to Zarah for helping you to heal. Thank you to you for sharing the story.

  5. ducksam
    January 29, 2017

    Thank you, Dave, for this little memoir and the lessons it teaches about religious tolerance. It likely will take such meaningful anecdotes to heal this nation after a few years of rule by an autocratic hater. But we are a resilient country and you have already, as an individual, helped promote this process.

  6. rmcarlysle
    January 30, 2017

    Hear Hear Dave! Well said.

  7. moonminded
    January 30, 2017

    Powerful. Thank you for sharing this.

  8. Jeff Japp
    January 30, 2017

    Thanks for having the courage to share this! It is imperative that people do not remain silent in these times.

  9. koeur
    January 30, 2017

    So, regardless of her religion/race, that was her job?

    • davekheath
      January 30, 2017

      Yes, somehow with all the support I had she was the one person who really could reach out to me.

  10. Judie Sigdel
    February 6, 2017

    Thank you for a beautiful, moving story. This is priceless: “She was my angel of light, when I was in a sea of darkness. “

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