Anchored- The Real-Life Story of Maitha Darwish

real life story of maitha darwish hissah ec abu dhabi

Tell me a bit about yourself. What do you want the world to know about YOU?

I grew up in Dubai in the 80’s when it was still quite under-developed, to an Emirati father and a British mother.  I am happily divorced and I have a seven-year-old boy. I currently work for Emirates Nature-WWF on its youth programme – Connect with Nature – a conservation education and outreach programme designed to connect UAE youth to nature.

Describe a typical day in your life.

I wake up at 6:30 am, have coffee, prepare lunchboxes, take my son to school, and then walk to the Emirates Nature-WWF office right next door. In the afternoon, I pick my son up from school, go the gym, go home, and then prepare dinner and the following day’s meals and snacks. I put my son to bed, and enjoy some alone time reading, writing, or watching a video before bed at around 9 – 10pm.

What was one of the biggest challenges you faced during your journey to where you are today?

It took until my 30’s and trying out many different jobs before I found a dream organization which mirrors my life purpose and core values. I opted out of a targeted career in my 20’s to live abroad, get married, and have a child. This decision left me unfulfilled, especially when I was a full-time mother.  It was a blessing, though, because giving birth was re-birth for me and I identified what I didn’t want. With introspection and significant life changes, I am now finding my voice to embark on the journey on returning to myself.

Who would you describe as a role model and why?

This may sound conceited, but with the help of a life coach and as I grow into maturity, I admire the courage and quiet strength I possess to have persevered through a challenging childhood and subsequent life experiences. I can now trust myself to endure difficult times, whether personally or professionally.

Tell us one thing about you that most people don’t know.

I care for the health of our Planet Earth, its habitats, and all the species that reside within it. I worry about the effects of biodiversity loss due to habitat degradation, climate change, and the extraction of natural resources. It’s in the hands of all human beings to make sustainable life choices. It is, unfortunately, a problem which the younger generation stands to inherit; however, I’m optimistic that they have the power to solve the problem effectively and creatively.

What is one piece of advice about how to cope with challenges/struggles you face in life that you would like to give to the world?

Each person holds a boundless reserve of strength and is stronger than he or she thinks. He or she can choose to be a phoenix, rising out of the ashes by committing to change his or her perception and invest in his or herself – or he or she can choose to live in a state of low frequency.

What is ONE word that you feel defines you? (It could be your profession, a personality trait, or a quality you possess).