It was not a story I ever intended to tell.
A story I wanted to forget.
I had all the pieces.
I hid each and everyone one of them in far away places,
Some under a rock
Some in the trunk of a tree,
The birds flew away with few pieces.
I gave some to strangers I met in cafes, on an airplane or the train, hoping that stranger would take that piece away and I’ll never see it again.
The likeliness of me finding that piece is the likeliness of me running into that stranger again.

I took a deep breath, deep enough to last me another decade, or two.
Because my brother said so. He said “Sawsan, it might be another decade or two, it might never happen.” I love my brother.
It was the coldest winter I ever lived through. I can still feel it deep in my bones. I was in the car with my father on the highway. He tried to keep me lively, or alive, by talking. I made him think I was lively, or alive, by nodding. If he noticed the rhythm of my nods he would have found out I wasn’t listening to anything he said.

The pain in my chest was beyond words.
That pain hasn’t left me in years.
I just never understood it. Neither did the doctors!

But now, all the pieces I worked hard to make sure I never find are coming together, way earlier than I expected.
That pain makes sense to me.
It makes sense why I almost always felt it.
The pieces are coming together like some magnet has been activated.

That deep breath I took to last me another decade or two, I can let it out now.
I can let it all out.

As for the pain,
I finally realized
that all along
it was only life
giving birth
to itself.
The labor pains
of life
giving birth
to itself.


Pratt Beach
Chicago – Illinois

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3 Responses to

  1. And here you are. Wide eyed and living with gratitude. Love the photo!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautifully expressed! Your writing is just heartfelt, honest and raw. You should write a book Sawsan. Even if you make it about someone else, to protect your family, you know the deep feelings of this reality. They do stay with you forever. Love to you. 💚💕


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