Syria’s widows are struggling to find a sense of normalcy in the dusty Jordanian border town of Ramtha, painfully close to the home and life they once lived in Daraa, in southwestern Syrian. The burdens of violence are present in their scant belongings, heavy mementos to remind themselves of those they lost in the war. Digital era lockets: cherished cell phone images of dead fathers, husbands, and brothers lost to Syria’s bloody uprising.
I first met many of these women in 2012 when their husbands and fathers were still alive, fighting for the Free Syrian Army. The photos, and the accompanying article, "The Private Lives of Syria's War Widows," explore the intimacies of everyday life of four families headed by women who have lost their fighter husbands to the civil war. “Tomorrow there will be apricots” is a popular proverb in the Levant, which means, “Tomorrow never comes.”
Above, Hala, 19, illustrates the proverb. Divorced from her husband after only 25 days, she had been forced to marry her abusive cousin after her father was killed. She feels she is slowly dying inside the apartment, and her only release had been a laptop she used to write poetry and stay connected to Syria. Her uncle became enraged upon discovering the computer, smashing it, beating her, and throwing her clothes out the window. Tanya Habjouqa