She finally got to a place where she felt free. She knew that no matter what the big bad world threw upon her, she’d be okay. Because deep inside her, she was sure she belonged to the light more than the darkness. And in a way, that was her sanctuary.
I opened my eyes to see total darkness. I looked left and right in hopes of finding a small glimpse of light, but nothing. I got up and walked for a while but it felt as if I was not even moving. I got nowhere. I started shouting for help. I thought that maybe my voice was too low so I shouted even louder and louder until I lost my voice. I started crying and trying to accept the fact that no one was coming to help; I was going to spend the rest of my life in this cold dark place. Suddenly, I thought I saw something moving; a hand maybe. I reached for it but it didn’t take my hand. Instead, it seemed like it grabbed something veil-like and started moving it revealing a light so bright that it forced me to close my eyes. When I opened them, I was back in my room, staring at my purple ceiling.
Mom always says that all people have ulterior motives and that everyone of them is constantly thinking about ways to improve their lives on the expense of others. She always calls me naive for believing the total opposite, but I just can’t wrap my head around it. Why does she as well as many people just presume that others are evil? I mean, why is it that whenever a person has hope for others, he suddenly becomes an idiot? Because I happen to believe that all people are good. I am positive that underneath all these layers of hatred, darkness, cruelness and what not, there exists a beautiful clean soul inside everyone of us. The secret here is just how exactly do we find this soul. It is not about how bad people are, it’s about how good they are at concealing their “goodness”.
There he was, standing in the corner of this crowded, peach colored room, staring at the open casket where his mother lied still looking like an angel. She was surrounded by all kinds of bright and colorful flowers, yet her face was paler than ever. It was a hot afternoon, but he felt so cold. He could not apprehend what has happened. The accident, the screams, his mom covered in blood, his dad fainting, the hospital and now this funeral, it all seemed as if he was watching a movie. He was just reviewing all that has happened with one sentence going through his head; a sentence that he once heard in a TV show and has since been waiting for the right moment to use it. He could hear it on repeat in his mind:” Every life comes with a death sentence.”
This sentence resonated with him from the very first time he had heard it. The reason may be because he did not believe in life in the first place. He stood there, still staring at his mother, questioning the reason behind our entire existence. Why are we alive? What’s the point if we are all going to die eventually? Why bother and actually accomplish anything if it’s all going to waste? Why move on and go further if one nasty drunk driver can take it all away in mere seconds? Then his thoughts shifted to blaming God for his mother’s death. Why her? She was a good woman and an amazing mother. She had never done wrong by anyone. She was one of the very best people in town. Why is God so unfair? Why does he not punish those who do not even care about their lives? Why not him? He didn’t really want to live, he was worthless. He knew all of his objections could not change this depressing reality, but he could not help himself but to resent everything around him.
There he was, standing in the corner of this empty peach colored room after the last two guests had walked out of the door. He was still staring at his mother, only now his father was kneeling next to her casket crying begging her not to leave him alone. What he could not understand was why his father thought she left him alone. He had him, his little Johnny. He turned 19 two weeks ago, but he was still his daddy’s little Johnny. How could his father forget that? He knew he should know better than be upset with his grieving father; he knew he didn’t mean it, however, he still felt so useless. That was the second time that day he had felt worthless. His father finally stood up and walked towards the door without saying a word as if he was signalling that it was time to leave.
John hated the awkward, silent walk home. His father looked like he was about to stop breathing at any given moment. He, himself, had no idea how he was able to move his legs. He was trying to gather all of his thoughts hoping to reach a reasonable conclusion before they got home. He needed to find his conclusion before walking through the door because walking in, smelling his mother’s scent all over the place and remembering her pale face once again meant he had to revisit every miserable thought that made him feel oh so worthless. He was trying to find the conclusion that would maybe help convince him to push through and move forward after losing the one person who made moving forward worthwhile. But it was all in vain. He struggled for a little over an hour, yet it seemed like 5 minutes. Their walk ended too fast. He was so consumed by the idea that he needed a conclusion that he didn’t even begin trying to find one. He had approximately one minute to figure it out, but there was something blocking all of his thoughts. Then, as he took his first step inside, it struck him.. he already had his conclusion. It was the thing that caused this mess in the first place, that one stupid sentence;
“Every life comes with a death sentence” so why even bother to think it through?
My name is Jane, I’m 20 years old soon to be 21 and ten years ago, I was raped. You see I was a normal 10 year old; a happy girl who had everything she wanted. I loved life.
That night I went to sleep quite peacefully. Only to be awoken late at night with a knot in my stomach as I opened my eyes to see him trying to undress me. Even though I was wearing a short, above the knee night gown, he still attempted to lift it all the way above my head.
At first, I was very confused. I didn’t understand what was happening. As I realized it was my grandfather, I was frozen in shock. I’ll never forget those few seconds right before he did the unforgivable deed. He whispered in my ear “I’m doing this because I love you, because you’re my favorite.” As he forced himself into me, I realized he was no longer the person I thought he was. He was a monster who has just destroyed a very precious part of me, a part that was right before then, pure, untouched by the darkness, untouched in body and soul.
Tears ran down my face as every time he forced himself onto me I thought it would never end. This continuous feeling of violation mixed with betrayal, sadness and confusion that a 10 year old could never comprehend let alone accept! Those feelings that most people in the world hopefully will never know were just too much to handle. I could not believe how someone so close to me, someone who was supposed to be like a father to me, could do such a thing.
I remember a few moments before it finally ended, all that was going through my mind was: what just happened? Why me?
When he finally finished, and as he was leaving the room, he turned and looked at me as if he was back to being the grandpa I had always known. He smiled and just said: “shatura jiddo, hek beddi eyaki” (good girl, this is exactly how I want you to be) and simply left the room.
I spent the next two or so days crying and throwing up. Nobody knew what was wrong with me and I told no one. I was too afraid of what might happen. Will they believe me? Will they hate me? Will they be on my side? And many many other questions.
All these mixed emotions caused me to eventually cave down to depression. I became this sad pessimistic girl who hated everyone and trusted no one. I hated life! I constantly wondered: what’s the point? Why do I deserve to live?
Now, here I am 10 years later, a grown up “lady” taking my very first steps towards the future. I’m still as hurt as ever. I have told a selected few about it but not my family and I live with the struggle of knowing that I’m hiding this from the closest people to my heart. I think I have developed a phobia of all grandfathers and I know it sounds funny but it’s true. I am oh so scared of the idea that one day I will eventually have to get married and engage in physical relations with an individual who may or may not understand my concerns. I am a broken, confused and paranoid little girl in the body of a 20 year old woman who is trying her best to survive in this ugly, horrible and dark concoction of living things we call life in hopes of making it to a brighter future.