20 years!

It’s my birthday, I’m twenty years old now, 2 decades; in which I’ve been through a lot as a Gazian born and raise, I’ve met a lot of people, some of them have been killed by Israel in different wars, some were injured and some were imprisoned.
20 years of struggle, I don’t know how to feel.. should I be happy because I survived one more year or to be sad because I still have to deal with more suffering. It aches me when I see other people in my age around the world have better things to worry about than ”surviving”, we are all equal, we should have the same quality of life, injustice is really painful.. I don’t understand how the world functions, why don’t we just respect each other’s rights and live in love and peace? Why does it have to be this complicated? No one is eternal anyway, we all going to die, why we don’t make this short life good for all? What’s the point of killing each other? What’s the point of being evil? Why don’t we have a common vision of life? Why world peace is nothing but a fairy tale? Why my birthday wish has to be ” God please protect me, my family and my beloved ones” every year?!! WHY? Why? Why? EXPLAIN IT TO ME!
Most of the memories I remember from my childhood are the pictures of the 2nd intifada, it was the first time to see slaughtered people, injured and blood lots of blood, I was just 5 years old, I remember how Mohammed el Dorra was killed in front of the whole world..
I remember spending long hours on the street because of Israeli roadblock, I remember when my mum was trapped in the north of Gaza for three days because of the roadblock, my little sister was trapped for a day too when she was just 4 years old, it was the first time I saw my parents that panic, my mum was crying and I thought I’ll never see my only sister again, I still remember how my grandfather’s comforting hugs feel like, when his eyes look most powerfully down into mine and mine look most helplessly up into him and he says it will all be alright, you are strong girl nothing can break you down..
I remember the day when Israel settlements were removed from Gaza, we were really happy, we thought we will know how freedom feels but then the heartbreaking division, followed by the sucking siege.. the worst 8 years of my life in which I lived through 3 brutal wars, not sure if ”war” is the right word to use, because it’s more like 1.7 million people are besieged in the strip and civilians are being slain by Israeli killing machines_ warplanes, artillery and navy’s missiles and there are some resistance that trying to protect the civilians by some HOME-MADE weapons.
In every birthday I assure to rebirth my soul, to renew my energy and to revive my dead dreams, I still refuse the idea that birthdays are depressing in spite of what’s going on, yes you are one year closer to death but in Gaza you LIVE at death’s door. looking at what I have achieved in one year, I met a lot of people, learnt a lot of lessons and gained a great deal of experience. getting old is good and beautiful.


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