The story of the fall-The fifth and final part
Writer: Zahra Tarshi
Nine months and seven days have passed since that sinister day. I have been waking up every morning with a new sadness for months. Every morning, when I surf on Facebook, I read some bad news; Nine months and seven days pass through my mind like a movie. I smile bitterly at life and continue to live. I have not written a single line for more than two months. I have not read a poem to the end and I have not flipped through a page of a book. It seems like I am dead for months. I feel like a 16-year-old girl who has not been allowed to go to school for nine months and seven days and misses the simple days of life. What a strange destiny.
Until last year, if a woman my age laughed out loud and wore a colorful dress; was said: “Why do you behave like teenage girls?” Today, as a 33-year-old woman, I can not even imagine the extent of the grief of a 16-year-old girl in my homeland. It is so horrible to be deprived of your most basic human rights in this age and era while people think of living on other planets; You have to fight for your basic human rights needs, and how unequal this struggle is and how depressing the tragic years of adolescence are. A girl whose only fault is being a girl in a land called Afghanistan. Maybe that’s why I haven’t been able to write for months. I can not describe this pure pain and despair. But it must be written. Each of us must write the story of life after the fall of Kabul so that our future generation will know, that even though we were not to blame for this situation; we always bear the burden of our leaders’ mistakes and pay a heavy price. What is a heavier penalty than not living despite being alive? It must be written, because these writings are more real than the writings of historians, and one day our future generation will not sell the writings of historians short. Each of us is a page in this history. A history tied to blood, war, hatred, and sacrifice.
On March 17, 2022, A new chapter began in my life. The day we came to the U.S. and I was thinking about all the long hours of flying, from Dubai to Los Angeles, how many more times do we have to change the country to become a citizen? I was thinking that forty years ago, my father had left his homeland in the hope of a better future and had immigrated to Iran, and how cruelly history is repeated today, and I leave my parents who have worked hard for my education for years. To provide a better future for my children. Two months and five days have passed since the beginning of the repetitive migration season and I feel more homesick each day. These days I remember my father’s stories from the early days of emigration and being away from home, family, and land, and I say to myself: “One might be accustomed to anything in this world except statelessness.”
If not, my father would never have returned to his country after decades of emigration. Everything is fine here, but I do not feel at home. I have not seen so much blue sky for years and I have not breathed so much fresh air. But neither I am from this city nor this city is mine. Now, when my daughters go to school, I am no longer afraid of not returning. Now when the wind blows hard on the gate; I do not think it is the sound of a blast and my heart does not beat faster. But now, every morning when I wake up, I open my Facebook page with a thousand fears lest it explodes, commit suicide again, and how long will this story continue? I’m tired of this repetitive question. Human beings get used to everything such as loneliness, nostalgia, distances, and lack of something but will there ever be a day when he becomes accustomed to being stateless? If so, why did not the father endure and return forty years later? I just know. Now no one feels good. Neither those who have remained in that land nor those who have left their souls there and taken their bodies with them.
Today, neither my father has a homeland in Afghanistan, nor do I, his daughter, countries farther away from him. It is a heavy penalty to be stateless for us who were neither children of authorities nor had the power to make decisions. For years, not only ourselves but also our children will bear this heavy burden, and the fate of me, my father, and my daughters will be linked in one word – statelessness.
Translated by: Ali Rezaei