BRIDGE BETWEEN WORLDS: A Lebanese-Arab-American Woman’s Journey

Hala Lababidi Buck
Scarith, 2019
356 Pages, 64 Illustrations
ISBN 978-1-7326988-7-1 Paperback

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About the Author

Hala Buck grew up in Lebanon and earned her BA in Art Education at the American University of Beirut. She has visited fourteen Arab countries and accompanied her Foreign Service officer husband in seven. She has exhibited her watercolors around the world and worked as a State Department interior designer. Hala earned an M.A. and taught at Bowie State and George Washington University. A Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor and Board-Certified Counselor, she is a professional member of the American Art Therapy Association and former chair of its Multicultural Committee. A regular faculty member and former board member of the International Committee of Adlerian Summer Schools and Institutes, a member of the North American Society of Adlerian Psychology, American Counseling Association, and associate member of the U.S. Association for Body Psychotherapy. She has authored articles about cross-cultural therapy and gives workshops nationally and internationally, integrating Adlerian Psychology, art therapy, and the body.

About the book

In this personal, multifaceted memoir, Hala Buck, a professional artist and integrative therapist, reflects on her mixed Muslim and Christian family, her marriage to an American diplomat, their nomadic life between the Arab World and North America, raising a “Third Culture” daughter, and navigating cultures.

Buck’s story finds her as she embarks on a pilgrimage to her birth country, rediscovering her Lebanese roots. The daughter of a Muslim father and Christian mother, Buck explores her childhood in Lebanon––itself a bridge between East and West. She leaves her country of birth to follow her American husband. Through stories, poetry, and watercolors, as well as art therapy, Hala paints us a picture of her transient life in seven Arab countries, West Africa, and Canada. Along the way she discovers and explores what it means to be a human bridge, crossing between cultures and inviting others to do the same, all the while looking for meaning and purpose.

Bridge Between Worlds is both deeply personal and a universal story of searching for a sense of belonging and home. With honesty, creativity, and humor, Hala Buck shares her story with the hope of inspiring and encouraging readers to explore their own stories and discover, as she has, new understanding, perspectives, and gifts on their journey.


“The evolution of our species asks for us to build bridges beyond narrowed identities and discover the dimensional wholeness that is our true nature. In this evocative depiction of her own journey, Hala Buck shows us how each of our lives can be an unfolding—from woundedness to healing, and from separation to belonging.”

—Tara Brach, Author of Radical Acceptance and Radical Compassion (Viking, 2020)

“Hala Buck rightfully sums herself up in the title of her book Bridge Between Worlds: A Lebanese-Arab-American Woman’s Journey, and what a journey it has been! Mrs. Buck takes the reader on a fascinating and complex worldwide journey, rich in details of the tapestry of her experiences. One cannot help but conclude that there is a need for more Hala Bucks in these very divisive times. We could all learn from her.”
—Johnny Young, U.S. Career Ambassador (ret.) and Angelena V. Young U.S. Protocol Officer (Ret.)

“This memoir is a profound, poignant, and personable account of an Arab woman born across faiths, married to an American diplomat, mother to a bicultural daughter. Hala’s stories are filled with candor, humor, struggles, and insights as a bridge builder, a peacemaker, a model of an Arab-American woman. All readers will be gripped and moved by this memoir that connects us across cultures!”

—Luby Ismail, Intercultural trainer, Founder and President of Connecting Cultures