This blog post contains writings by my mother–one written in 2015, and the other written in 2023. She posted these on Facebook. The writings appear in this post, starting with the one from 2023, and then the writing from 2015.
The following has been written by my mother. She posted this on Facebook on October 12, 2023.
Years ago, I wrote an article on one of my most favorite personalities. That day, I got up very early in the morning, and I decided to write.
I went to my favorite coffee shop—Starbucks—to clear my brain and to write. I posted my writing on social media.
Later on, I reposted the writing, thinking that I then had more friends on social media, and I wanted my newer friends to know about my most loved person too.
The special person is none other than my son Tawsif Anam, Regional Director with the office of Senator Ron Johnson. How did a young man, someone who was born and raised in Bangladesh and moved to the United States as an immigrant, reach the point where he is now?
I will give an overview. October 16th is his birthday—a few days from now.
He came to the United States in 2007 and got admitted at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. While in Bangladesh, he worked hard and got good grades in both O and A Level exams. He was a well-behaved boy and loved by teachers, neighbors, and many more.
He was soft spoken, but developed skills in debate and extempore speech, and worked in an English language magazine in Dhaka.
Tawsif wrote articles in English newspapers, too. So, after he came here, it was not difficult for him to adjust to the culture, educational system, and above all the society and the people here in America. Same as before, he was liked by all. He worked hard and completed his undergraduate degree. My son went on to pursue a Master of Public Affairs degree from the Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs, University of Wisconsin – Madison. He also gained experience in public policy by working at private and public sector organizations in Wisconsin including Wisconsin Medical Society, Wisconsin Legislative Council, Population Health Institute, United Way of Dane County, and Wisconsin Department of Health Services.
Now, let me reveal how he got to meet Senator Ron Johnson.
I, as his mother, was a complete homemaker. Tawsif was not involved in politics. But he knew that I had a keen interest in politics. Since I had not much to do, I watched news and television programs involving legal matters.
My father was in politics a very long time ago, in the 1960s. My father also had vast knowledge of law, though he was not a lawyer. Seeing my father dealing with legal matters to help people, I started to become interested and know more as time passed. In that way, Tawsif also learnt a lot from his grandfather as a young boy, as he spent time with him. In the process, Tawsif learnt how to file important papers, how to preserve those files in an orderly fashion, how to maintain an office in an organized way, and more.
One very crucial lesson that my son learnt from his maternal grandfather was that a pen is a very strong weapon. It is mightier than a sword. Tawsif became interested in writing.
On a spring afternoon, as I was resting, Tawsif came to my room and gave me the news of an upcoming Republican Party of Wisconsin convention. He further mentioned the time and venue, though I was not affiliated with politics and did not personally know anybody from the political arena.
I still cannot figure out what prompted me to decide to go to the venue where the convention would take place. There was no one who I personally knew who was actively involved in politics here in America. I took a bold decision being unaware of any possible outcome, and asked my son to reserve accommodation at a hotel in the Milwaukee area for the duration of the convention.
I will make this brief. On the day of the convention, we mother and son walked straight towards the reception desk. That was a daring approach. God is always great. Things were not easy, but miracles happen. I want to thank the kind gentleman who made an easy access for us to enter inside.
Excited, we were going towards where there was a big gathering. This was like a dream come true.
Senator Ron Johnson was speaking in front of a large audience in one of the rooms. Wow, that was great!
But we had never thought that it would be a life-changing moment. A young man, who arrived in the United States just a few years ago, would be hired by U.S. Senator Ron Johnson as his Regional Director. Till date, my son Tawsif Anam Zoheb is working for this great man. This is the third term of the Senator.
I dedicate this writing to my son on his birthday, which is 16th October. My prayers are always there for his well-being.
If you are interested to learn more about my son and his accomplishments, please visit www.tawsifanam.net.
The following has been written by my mother. She posted this on Facebook on October 15, 2015.
Previously, I wrote brief notes on some of my favourite personalities on Facebook. This morning, very early, while it was still dark, my eyes opened. It was still dark and, for me, waking up so early is quite unusual. But the image of this special person did not let me remain in bed. I pulled my son from his bed and asked him to freshen up and get ready. Sleepy and surprised, he got out of bed. I figured he had a question to ask as to why. Before he could do so, I expressed my wish that I wanted to enjoy the fog out there. An obedient boy as always and knowing his mother very well, he got himself ready. While starting the car engine, the two words he uttered were: “which direction?” A very obedient son indeed.
Now, I will go back in the past in order to move forward to allow me to express my thoughts. After long years of marriage, I was blessed to have the most precious gift, a baby boy that I carried for nine long months within me. Everybody within and outside of the family, especially his grandparents, became overjoyed, and prayed for his healthy and long life. They were extremely overwhelmed.
As he was growing up, symptoms of acute illness started to develope. Couple of doctors were always there for his regular treatment. His grandparents used to be too concerned about his well-being. Chronic bronchial allergy was the cause of him remaining sick almost all seasons of the year.
It is difficult for a mother to watch her child facing difficulty in breathing almost all the time. Allergy test was not prevalent in Bangladesh during those days. Keeping him away from dust, smoke, pollen, pets, and various food items was the precaution. Seeing my son in pain, I started to feel like a living corpse. The little boy, the most obedient and the most decent, accepted and followed each and every rule imposed on him without any question or any kind of retaliation. Love and cooperation from family, teachers, and friends helped a great deal. In the neighborhood and in school, he earned very good reputation.
The doctor’s advice was to avoid this deadly attack by taking preventive measures. Taking steroid could not be an option. Life became harder, inspite of love and care along with prayer from the dear ones. There evolved a group of people – these people were the self-proclaimed well-wishers who claimed to know what was best for my son. They actively tried to convince the father of my son that what I was doing for my baby would cripple the boy. Upon finding this out, I went to my parents for advice. They simply told me to disregard what people were saying. I decided to follow what my parents advised me to do – this enraged my son’s father. He trusted his friends and associates more than anything else. Things started to fall apart between me and his father.
After my son turned twelve, the symptoms gradually disappeared. The restrictions, previously imposed on my son, were greatly reduced, enabling him to live like other kids. I had to stand strong and so did he. Now my son could eat at different restaurants without the fear of cross-contamination and his mobility also increased greatly without worrying too much about dust, pollution, and weather fluctuations. He could also participate in outside sports without worrying about sweat and exhaustion. He was also engaging in extra-curricular activities, such as debate. Furthermore, he was secretly writing lots of poems, which I found out about when he had already compiled a full manuscript (he was in class nine then). In college, he joined the Young Entrepreneurs Society and also worked as a reporter for an English magazine. My job was to make him strong and tough in regards to health and character. We, mother and son, crossed all hurdles, and eventually landed in this great nation – the United States of America. With his honesty and hard work, he came to this position, the position he is in now – the Regional Director of United States Senator Ron Johnson (who is also the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs). My boy is doing his job with dedication. He loves the people, and people embraced him too. I, mother of Tawsif Anam Zoheb, cannot think of being separated from my son and leave him while he is in the midst of building up his career (until and unless there is call from God).
16th October is Tawsif Anam’s birthday. I dedicate this piece of writing to my beloved son and seek prayer for him from all my near and dear ones.
A small note – that early morning (12th October, 2015), when I wrote this piece, I was sitting in one of my favorite coffee shops. The fog symbolizes the fog (lack of clarity) of my life. This is for those who came later in my life, and are unaware of everything.