Grand Slam Journey

12. Samah Damanhoori: The story of Madina Papel, a story about finding your uniqueness and having the courage to show it

December 29, 2021 Klara Jagosova Season 2
Grand Slam Journey
12. Samah Damanhoori: The story of Madina Papel, a story about finding your uniqueness and having the courage to show it
Show Notes

Samah Damahoori is the co-founder and creator of Madina Papel. You can subscribe to this channel on YouTube.

Please watch the eight-minute story of Madina Papel before listening to this podcast. 

Samah grew up in Saudi Arabia and came to the USA in 2014 to pursue her Master's degree in Creative Writing at Notre Dame de Namur University. Samah worked for some of the largest tech companies in the San Francisco Bay area and HBO, where she managed the production of a VICE News episode, which followed the struggles of two Saudi sisters who escaped from their family and struggled to break free from a life dictated by Saudi Arabia's oppressive guardianship laws. 

During this episode, we discuss various topics revolving around:

  • The movie and story behind Medina Papel
  • The process of creating an animation
  • We discuss Samah's journey and the difficulties for her to come to America to pursue her education due to the male guardianship laws in Saudi Arabia

Favorite quotes from this episode: 

On finding and owning your uniqueness: 
"When I started this whole journey, I was living as a survivor. I wanted to secure myself and make sure that I didn't end up in a bad situation or regret choosing to stay here and work for myself and my freedom. I buried the pain that I was abandoned by my country and my family for a very long time - for almost seven years. I left the Bay area a year ago to live in LA, and that was the first time I lived in another place that is not the Bay Area. I have been to many states here, but I never lived and changed locations. That hit me hard and made me more aware of that pain to come out. It made me learn to accept, for people like us, who choose to be free and break so many cycles and break so many traditions, to really accept that we are alone. Not in a bad way, but you really are alone, you are different, you are so unique, and if you look around you, there is no one like you, and sometimes this is painful. And I used to bury that pain. Now I have come to a point where I fully accept this and am fully aware of it. It is ok to be unique; it is ok to be lonely; it is ok to be different and enjoy the moment and the people around me no matter what the past is bringing to me. And I am also learning that we are systems and these stories when they come back, we have the power and control to re-write them and mak

Noble SISU Cold Plunge 
The SISU Cold Plunge creates health benefits through the hormetic stress response. Noble Hormetics is a local Austin, TX, company that specializes in helping people get cold.  Ditch the bags of ice; visit for more information. Use coupon code GSJ100 to get $100 off your plunge.

Thank you for listening. If you enjoyed this episode, share it with someone who may enjoy it as well, and consider leaving a review on Apple Podcasts & Spotify. You can also submit your feedback directly on my website.

Follow @GrandSlamJourney on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or join the community on LinkedIn. This content is also available on Substack and YouTube.