About 10 years ago, I was sitting, briefly listening to the news on the television, alone in the living room when I heard there was gonna be a war in the Middle East. I remember my heart bouncing, I turned the television off before my parents could hear it. I was praying it wasn’t going to happen in Syria. At the age of 10, I already knew the meaning of war because that’s basically what this world has been made of for the past centuries, and that’s what we’re taught, all day everyday at school during history class.
I was worried about everything, my family that lives there, my people and very much about my parents reaction. I didn’t want them to be sad and if at my age, I could feel what i was feeling about it, I couldn’t imagine what my parents would feel. But then, I heard them announcing, it was going to occur in Iraq. It’s terrible to say that now, that i’m 21 and aware, but at that time I was relieved that it wasn’t going to be in the place I call Home. I was relieved because that meant i could still go see my grandparents, my aunts and uncles and my cousins, basically all my people.
I was almost happy, I was too young to be aware of other people’s misery.
Years passed and Iraq fell down in ruins, innocent people kept on getting killed, and nobody really understood the reason of it all because it wasn’t clear nor fair. While those years passed, I was growing up, and became even more attached to Syria.
It was basically the reason I was living. I would breathe Syria, speak Syria, dream Syria. It’s like when you’re in love, all you think about is that specific person, well for me, it was that specific place on earth, Syria or should I say, Home.
I went to Syria, for the last time, during the summer of 2011. You couldn’t call the situation a situation of war yet, it felt like a conflictual situation. But little did we know it would end up being a war. After I left, summer left with me, and fall arrived, with the fall of the country … Innocent people got killed, historical monuments got destroyed and the innocence of those kids got stolen. Instead of seeing them playing and asking for pictures and ice cream in the streets, they are now holding weapons, at a younger age than when I figured out what death really meant. When at 21 years old, I feel like some of my happiness got killed in the process, I cannot imagine what those kids of war must feel. Schools have become shelters and books are no longer a source of knowledge, but paper to be able to light fire when the winters are freezing and the hearts are going numb. Mothers are crying to the loss of their children and hope has left the souls. The jasmine scent has left the streets and the laughter of the people has been replaced with the noise of the bombings and screams. All that people are longing for is a sense of Hope in the middle of all the blood spread along those almost past 4 years.