paavan

407 days post ZA - musings to no one

“Life is hard, and contrary to once popular euphemisms, it doesn’t seem to get any easier. Rather, just as one problem is sorted, another has a way of appearing out of nowhere - well not nowhere I suppose, as they typically seem to come out of yesterday’s shortcomings and today’s fears. This newest challenge of ours is certainly no different.

As I sit here writing, I hear the sound of deep peaceful slumber coming from our bed and I can feel all the stress you carry high in the tight the lines of your face abate in the slow rhythmic pace of your breathing. You’ve worked so hard for this. For us. For this community, all 53 - no 52 of us. I know you think it to be your penance for past crimes, and I know you do not believe me when I say that  that world is past and today is brand new. But I do wish that you would. You are not the man you were any more than any of us are the people we once were. I am certainly not the shell of a woman I was the day the dead rose. I am strong both mentally and physically. And it is because of you that I have made it this far. It is because of you that I believe in myself, my abilities and this place. And I do. I believe that we have a future with purpose, that humanity is not dead as long as we take the time to remember that it lives in each of us. 

Allah, I’m not even sure where my pen is trying to take me. You know that you have that effect on me I’m sure of it, and you’re probably smirking in your dreams.

Despite these pointless musings, I’d intended on addressing the newest hardship - my newest grief. Sometimes I feel that writing is the only safe place to let doubt and fear break through the facade we all wear. But today was hard. Harder than I’d let even you know. Medicine will never be smarter or stronger than the forces of nature, but how wicked of nature to make death such a danger. An allergic reaction - that was all. A simple tree nut.  And not enough antihistamines or epinephrine to reverse the process.  At his mother’s request I’d given him enough pain medication to sooth his passing and waited until he’d departed this life to end it. She thanked me. I’d held her until her sobs had subsided. But when did this become medicine? When did a blade to the medullary cortex become as much a part of the ritual of death as sweet hymns and passages from the Quran? 

These are difficult times. I hear people say that these are godless times. But in truth, I find myself praying and thinking to god far more than I ever did before the turn. I know you still struggle with Him - Allah, after the things you lived through even before the turn. But I pray for you as well.  

And hope that tomorrow is a better day.”

With that, Zeba flipped the small, yellowed memobook shut and slipped a rubber band around its pages. Taking in a deep breath, she turned down the lantern. Tomorrow would come, and that was a good thing.