The X Page: A Storytelling Workshop

SocksFinal copy


by Wafa Agha


I am there in the car with my dad and my sister, her name is Hadeel. A very beautiful sunny morning with a delicate breeze.

I am six years old, in grade one. It’s the first day of school.

We have moved to a different area that is far away from our previous home. Therefore, we have to switch schools and get ready to meet new friends and a new world. At my old school, I had a friend, her name is Enas, who I loved a lot and did not want to be apart from. I am nervous and silent when being introduced to new friends.

I am wearing a new school uniform; it is gray and white.

Though we are registered with the bus service, Dad wanted to make sure to drive us the first and second day to ensure we feel safe and comfortable. 

My sister Hadeel is sitting beside me in the back seat. She is older than me, in fourth grade. She is coping well with the idea of moving to a new school. She did not like our old school anyway, she did not like the fact that they didn’t offer any music or sports classes.

We usually talk and exchange some morning laughs and jokes while in the car with Dad, but on this day, I am quiet, silent and nervous. Staring at the window all the way through from our new house to our new school.

It is 7:30 am. My dad is looking into the rearview mirror to check on us in the back seat. I see his eyes in the mirror, he can feel how stressed I am.

Here we are, arriving at the school entrance. Children and parents seem very excited, it is very packed at the parking lot.

Dad helps put on my backpack and water bottle, but before we head to the school door, Baba notices my teary eyes. I am looking straight into his eyes as if I am calling out loud for help. He bends down, and ties my shoe laces. He makes sure the socks are both comfy and aligned. 

He whispers in my ear: “Baba—are your socks tight?”

I remain silent. I nod my head for approval.

Dad tries to enlarge the socks by stretching them with his gentle hands, smiling and looking at me: “Wait for a second,” he says.

He opens the car door and finds a pair of white socks that have my favorite prints. He says: “Whenever your socks get tight again, wear these socks, you will feel better, I promise, Baba!”

The socks have my favorite decorative little pearls on them. I feel like a princess when wearing them. 

I put on the new socks. They are very soft and fancy.

When we are seated in the classroom, everyone starts to look at one another with so many questions in their eyes. Everyone wants to feel like they belong. 

During the break in the green artificial grass next to our classroom, I take off my shoes and put them back on several times. I’m not sure why I feel I have to do this. Maybe I want to show the others that I have brand new socks. 

Maybe I need to check on my socks, to feel that Dad is with me.

There were so many loving meanings beyond his words, it was his way to reassure me that new beginnings are not easy, but we can beautify them in our own way. It was his unconditional love and care.

I am here after 26 years and I still remember that Baba was with me every single moment during that day. 

I love you and miss you Baba!