She is like the late winter’s moon, pale, but beautiful; cold, but graceful. She lies there with gloomy eyes looking at me, with unanswered questions glistening there to be acknowledged by God. Why did this happen to her, to us, to our country? It’s 2023, our bubbly 8-year-old daughter, Heena, running around the house with a red balloon in her hand; “Happy Valentine’s Day Mom”, she says to her paralyzed mother who is admiring her energy with a smile brightening upon her blanched face. I bet she could picturise her same self in that 8-year-old.
Heena was a perfect portrait of Mariyam; the same spark and enthusiasm she had seven years ago. Before this tragedy had hit us before Syria was devastated. Everything is fine now, with the country, but a tad bit of political instability is still there and an emotional instability is still there in our lives. We survived it, however, not with great success. War had hit us bad, stealing the happiness we could derive even on our mundane days. Mariyam, my wife, didn’t only lose her ability to move, but with that, dance, her passion had also abandoned her. Her will to live escaped her soul.
“Happy Valentine’s Day my Princess”, she spoke lightly to our daughter. Celebrating this day with my family, I am reminded of celebrating our wedding anniversary, 7 years ago, in which our lives cramped into the darkest of the corners we had ever faced because of the waging Civil War.
Aren’t we all pawns in the hands of time, the greatest player of them all. The greatest creator, the greatest protector, and the greatest destroyer. We all resemble the minions scattered around the Earth; ready to face the wrath of time. The doom decided to be laid upon us. Time had played not only with our future but with our emotions as well. Pushing us through the worst we could imagine, or rather, something we couldn’t even imagine. Our lost hopes had accumulated like a heap of garbage which was about to be dumped. And time was the devil which had joked upon the scenario the world was in. As if we were nothing, but again I would say, pawns in its hand. Pawns in the hands of time.
I kissed Mariyam on her forehead, “Happy Valentine’s Day”.