i am you – a page from my journal

Please stop looking at me like that your gaze stab and bleed me, it hurts so bad but I know I can’t put my thoughts into words or explain anything to you before I get all rallied up in emotions, you that can understand it all but don’t want to; you that are the society of which I am a part too.

I understand you are sad to see me in such a sorry state but are you “sad”? Isn’t it acceptable anymore for a person to fall sick; being vulnerable is what a human is I am a human seems you are don’t know or accept the sad part of reality; makes me question are you really that delusional.

You start your sympathy speech every time telling me but then pretend I am deaf for a moment and direct all you have to say to my parents don’t you know how hurt they feel for what parents wish hardship for their children.  You speak of how hard my life will be now, its ok you speak the truth but who knows of the future quit telling me my survival my fight is useless if you can’t make my faith stronger my belief in hope please don’t make me believe in darkness.

One stumble in life, an ill turn of fate was all you required to see me in a new light through a biased glass. You took all my achievements stripped me of all the respect and love I had earned, put me naked on a podium for display. Sometimes I think you waited for all this patiently, sadness in your words but do I see happiness in your eyes.

I shrink with pain the steps I force myself to walk I fall, fail yet I walk.

It’s said everything in life happens for a reason. I’ve seen none till now, wonder what will I see but I know none even you won’t speak of me with pity but you will celebrate my life and I won’t let anything come in my way to achieve what I have always set my eyes on, no matter disability or no disability. I am not perfect but who are we kidding neither are you.

Written some 5 years ago when I just struggling to accept my new identity as Srijana the girl with a “strange” walking disability.

A thread of memory

Since the time I remember the “big red tree” was always there, where the gate to my house should have been. Those were nicer times of bamboo fences that automatically adjusted itself to the growing width of the tree. Eyes of the childhood I just saw the blossoming red flowers of the tree hence the name.

I studied in a boarding school from the early years of my education. When I came home for a holiday, the first thing I did was hide behind the “big red tree” and send my father to tell mother I hadn’t come home though I always revealed myself by my giggles however I always have and will believe it did baffle her a little bit at least. This was my only activity with the “big red tree”. My innocent heart believed the tree was the beginning of my world where even though just for a few days I would be pampered and the evil “homework” would not dare enter or maybe it was only stability I sought.

Every time I had a visit home I noticed it had changed. No! It didn’t grow bigger or taller just that majestic redness had increased. The flowers bloomed all year-long; more in my presence I always assumed, celebrating my homecoming. I never knew the actual name of the tree, neither did I try to find out; nor do I know it now.

During one of my winter holidays a serious conversation among the adults stirred up, the tree’s branch would eventually touch the electricity wire propped up on the poles near it; which I now know is dangerous but back then it was just some adult hocus-pocus.

Cutting said one will help induce the tree to grow more beautifully, “we all eat lies when our hearts are hungry”; hence the grown-up decision was made to cut it the next day.

The day dawned and unlike other days I didn’t go out to play; did anyone notice I think not. I just closed myself in a room from where I could hear the commotion but not see the “big red tree” hurt. Every thud on it trunk was silenced by the raised volume of the TV; “Tom and Jerry” failed to entice a smile as I bawled my eyes out.

Though I avoided seeing it all day curiosity got the better hold of me, I looked and there stood just inches of the trunk instead of my “big red tree” which never grew to show us its full majesty again.

The next time I came home a metal gate stood there and the game of “hide and seek” just abruptly stopped.

A version of this article appears in print on May 24, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.

a version of this can be read at  Beyond Words

 

image courtesy of  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delonix_regia