For there’s a reason we’re ‘survivors’ and not ‘victims’!

So let me tell you my story. Yes, after endless therapies, sessions and workshops, I’ve realized that they were wrong. I’m going to tell as many people of my story as I can. I’m not going to try and ‘forget it’ like they told me to because this assault is a part of me and a piece of my life I will never forget.

I remember gaining consciousness that stony night on the cold street. A sharp throbbing between my legs. I vaguely remembered what had just happened. I remembered losing consciousness right after he took that sharp metal rod and rammed it inside me. I had woken up with hot blood spreading on the uneven road and dried up tears that stained my face. Well, the rod had just been the beginning to whatever it was he intended to do with me. 

The questions haunted my wakefulness because ‘sleep’ seemed like such an alien term!

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You can understand everything that had happened the consecutive nights. The endless screaming, the long spans of sheer numbness, the ceaseless crying! I felt like I couldn’t ever live ‘normally’ again. I felt violated. I felt dirty. The term ‘love’ didn’t make sense anymore. Who would want me? I blamed myself. Why was I weak enough to lose consciousness? Why didn’t I scream? Why didn’t I defend myself? Why did I wear jeans? Why did I have to do a night shift at work? Why was I born a girl?  The questions haunted my wakefulness because ‘sleep’ seemed like such an alien term!

The pain was too much to bear. So much so that after a point I felt nothing. I felt a kind of emptiness inside but it was such a relief. The constant burden of carrying that pain with me was suddenly lifted. Like I was finally given fresh air to breathe. That night, I had my first proper meal in months! I also truly appreciated how brilliant my mom’s cooking was!

I will fight but I need you with me!

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Slowly, with endless hours of therapy and countless pills, I realized how foolish I had been to blame myself. And you know the next thing I did? I filed a FIR. Because in no way was I going to let the bastard breathe the same free air as you, me and countless other survivors. He would get his due and so he did! Even though no amount of sentencing can bring justice to what he did, I fought my part and that’s liberating enough.

And from then on, my life was a clean slate!

So I will never forget what happened that cold night. It’s not fair that everyone expects me to! But I will not let it get the better of me.  I know that I fought and I know that I could. A kind of fire has been kindled in me that will not die down. I will fuel it to the point where it will rage. I will fight but I need you with me!

You, like me, will have to survive. There’s no alternative.

Love,

Another survivor friend!



Author: Zainab Haji

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