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Struggle: No Obstacle Is Too Great
Talla Spaul, author
EDUCATION IS FREEDOM Five years after the Islamic Revolution in Iran, Maryam decided that she could no longer raise her two sons in their home country. She took them to the United States, leaving behind her husband, her mother, her medical practice, and everything she owned. Arriving penniless in Florida, she began the difficult and sometimes dangerous process of rebuilding her life—starting as a dishwasher. In time, she went back to school in NYC that prepared foreign doctors to be able to work in the US (during one of the most crime-ridden eras in that city's history), then eventually worked her way up to vice president of an environmental/occupational medicine company. But that is only the beginning of a story that took Maryam around the world, from Venezuela to Malaysia to China and finally back to her home in the United States. Along the way, she raised her two sons, fought a lonely battle against cancer, and finally achieved a spiritual enlightenment that put all of the events of her life in a new and inspiring perspective. But at it's heart, Maryam's story is about the liberating power of education. When she had a thriving general medical practice in Iran, she chose to go back to school to learn a specialty (dermatology). When she moved to America, she began attending classes to learn the specifics of U.S. medical practices. When she got a job at an environmental medical business, she chose to pursue a degree in occupational medicine in order to advance as far as she could manage in her career. After fighting cancer and being unimpressed with traditional medical practices, she began studying Qigong and Tai chi as alternative medicine. When her marriage disintegrated, she began studying world religions, traveling to China to meet with a spiritual master to learn what it means to be truly happy. Every time Maryam faced a challenge, she got through it by educating herself in some new field. And with education came freedom. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Talla Spaul gave up a lucrative medical practice in Iran to move to the west, eventually making her home in the United States where she helped build a successful cutting edge company. She has two gown sons and now lives in Florida.