Wednesday, October 2, 2013

If I Cannot Find, I live to be Found

Today is the day. Today I get up, and wake my son. I make sure he is dressed and fed. Today is the day when I hug him tight and kiss his beautiful face, not once, not twice but over and over again. Today is the day when, as I say good bye I feel my heart break. The pain so fierce I think I might die. And I am surprised that I did not... did not die. When I see him walk away, I want to scream and shout, feral in my pain and fear. I want to hold him back. Tell him to stop and stay. But today is the day, I will not. I will bid him farewell and watch him till I can't see him anymore. Yes today is the day when I will live knowing I might never set my eyes upon him.  I will not know where and how he is. I have wondered if not knowing is worse than death and yet I cannot see life snuffed out of the child I brought into this world. I have to choose and I must protect. So today I will watch my heart walk out of my body. My soul will never be the same again.

But, I will live in the hope that my heart will find its way back to where it belongs.


I am angry and I am very afraid. I leave my Mother, my house, and everything I know.  I leave fear behind but the unknown and more fear await me. How do I walk away from the woman who taught me to walk, maybe to never return? Uncle speaks of a wonderful world beyond those Blue Mountains. But the voice inside me shouts that, that is a lie. For there can be no place on earth, more beautiful than my village. I want to pick fruit and climb trees in the apple last time. I want to run to the Madarsa and clasp the gnarled hands of the friendly last time. A game of football with Khalid in the fields behind the last time. Pull my sister Shazia's pigtails…one last time. Why did I miss school and spend time plotting and planning my next mischief, with my friends, under the almond tree? If I had not, maybe then I could stay. I should have fetched water for Mother and helped Shazia collect firewood. Maybe then, they would let me stay. I have prayed and promised Allah that I will be a good boy. But Allah is really mad at me, for today, I will have to leave. They tell me I must leave to save my life. My roots severed, I do not know how I will fly.

But, I will live in the hope that if I cannot find, I will be found.


Inspired by the Human Stories of courage,tragedy, survival and hope, I see and hear at my work at International Family Tracing, British Red Cross.