The sold dream 6
‘When you have faith in god that’s the moment that you start living no matter how bad the circumstances around you are. ‘
The stars were bright and I admired them as Ayesha was slept on my lap. I prayed for a miracle as I often did since the dreadful day when our lives changed forever. The summer Air was crisp and I sat there remembering the fragrance of the freshly cut grass of the fields back home, the smell of grass getting cut made me nostalgic. I yearned for that smell again, a homesick little girl without a home, surrounded by the smell of human waste. Our lives have no meaning and we are of no value to any one so we are left here.
Ayesha’s been sick and the last few days she’s been very weak and vomiting nonstop. Medical care is very scarce and the international organisations can only bring doctors in when the soldiers allow them into the camps. I have no idea what to do, in fact my only option is to watch. But I could not just watch. I could not just let Ayesha die a slow pain full death. She can’t leave now. The only reason I’m alive is because I know that her love for me is pure and real and right now, in this dump that is all that keeps us alive. Knowing that we have the love and prayers of our remaining family members. Maybe I’m being selfish. Maybe I should pray for peace because she is living a nightmare.
I gathered all the courage that I could and walked over to one of the solider’s tents. I stood by the entrance my heart was pounding, the sweat on my forehead started collecting at my temples. I stood still and the world around me began to spin, faster and faster it went. I took a deep breath, closed my eyes and admonished myself to pull it together because my sister needed me. I dug deep inside myself for any courage I could find. Finally I opened my eyes, I was ready and I knew exactly what needed to be done, the lost courage had returned.
I walked into the tent. The soldiers went silent when they noticed me at the entrance. No one had dared to enter until now. “Get out Bengali” someone shouted. I will not leave, I replied, my sister is sick and she needs medical help now, I screamed. A man walked towards me. He was older than most of the soldiers here. He slapped me so hard that I fell onto the floor. I was determined not to show any weakness. So I stood back up, walked to him and stood so close that I could smell his breath. I was no longer intimidated by his Authority. Inside I was terrified as hell but there was no way I would show them that.
The Soldiers who were asleep woke up to see what the commotion was about. I refused to back down. Another slap thundered across my face. Again I stood up, this time asking him if that all he had. He laughed out loud and continued to mock me as he pushed me against the wall and raped me. I looked at the female solider standing close by and asked her how she could stand there watching this, did she have no heart? Like all the others, she too found the rape amusing and cheered the man on as If he was some kind of hero.
I must have blacked out because when I awoke, I found myself alone and tied naked to a chair. I began to sob uncontrollably even though I knew that tears would not help me now. The old soldier walked in smiling and proceeded to drag me across the room by my hair. The pain was immense and just as I was about to scream II decided that I would not show him my weakness. He sat before me, looked into my eyes and told me how he enjoyed abusing me and that he would continue until I understood my place in the hierarchy. I spat on him and he retaliated by beating me. The moment the chair fell I felt a hard kick in the ribs. I gasped for air, I tried to talk but my lungs were on fire. Nothing came out at all. The air began to escape and I could taste blood in my mouth. I thought this was the end an I began to pray that God took me into heaven. He lifted the chair back up and and told me that even God didn’t want the Rohingya and that we were born to suffer because we were of no use to anyone.
For a moment I prayed to the one and only God because I knew this was my test from him to see if my faith was strong enough and with that bravery filled my veins. I asked him if he is mortal because he had no humanity left, that he could not be a man of faith because no religion on God’s green earth teaches one to oppress another. I looked at him in disgust and told him I would pray for him because a man this cruel has to be the one that needs saving. I smiled as I told him that eventually the dictatorship he represents is pure evil and that he would have to pay for every act of brutality he perpetrated against us and this will never let him sleep peacefully again. And that when the day came he would remember my face and the faces of all those he abused before me, he would never be free of his sins. I smiled at him because I had faith and when you have faith in God everything else falls into place.
Disgust Filled his eyes. I knew he didn’t think much. Suddenly he asked me why I had faith? I looked at him. I could smell his sweat, that’s how close he was standing. I told him that it was God that kept me alive and it was Satan that led him down his path. He began to beat me again but I would not go down without a fight for surely God is Greater than this apartheid. He called me naïve, cut the rope around my wrists and told me that this would be the last time I disrespected him. Then he let me out of the tent. As I walked out into the sun, the light blinded me and the pain was almost crippling but for some reason I was glad to be alive.