The Choice

January 29, 2013
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It was a full-moon night, so cold and freezing that my fingers almost turned numb, totally out of body’s control, never taking orders. Just like me now, as I decided to never listen or obey. I knew It’s wrong, I knew it’s a mistake but somehow it seemed to be the only right thing I can do now. Not so right, but sensible enough.

It became even colder, as if that was even possible. The wind blew in my face frostbitten breezes accompanied with snow and small frozen droplets of water. A bit by bit, they became more condensed blurring my vision from whatever was in front of me. But it didn't make a difference, there was no direction to follow, no way to head for, and nothing to be seen but that shockingly white snow. And as I walked blind-folded with this sticky white natural phenomenon, my memory began to recall what happened last week, day by day and minute by minute. I could feel the hole in my chest being triggered, threatened to be opened again even wider…

Being a sixteen year old teenager in normal cultures could sometimes be a problem either to you, or your parents. That was normal, that was okay, that was accepted. But not here, in Validona, in my country where teenagers are considered wilder and more dangerous than an escapee tiger or a human-eating shark. That was the look we were given when we walk alone in the streets or when we gather at some place. Teenagers are bad, teenagers are brainsick and disturbed, teenagers should be never left out without continuous supervision. When boys and girls complete their thirteen years on Earth, they don’t celebrate this shameful event. Instead, they go to the church and pray from the bottom of their hearts that God would help them pass this terrible zone in their lives. Afterwards, each single free minute would be taken away like a candy from a crying child’s hand. Aside from school, boys would start working at the mines or the factories our country is famous for while girls might help old women with the housework if they couldn't find a suitable job. No parties, no gathers, no fun… nothing. When our families become like really generous, they might allow us to go to the only club in the whole town together where we are supposed to be talking and chit-chatting. No drinks and no music are allowed, of course.

As you can see, our teenage years here aren't really fun, but we got adapted. Beside, working the whole day, running from school to work to your homework and so on left us really drained of energy and there was almost no space in our minds to possibly think about anything when we reach home but sleep. I guess that was the plan from the very beginning, get them worn-out and fagged, blur their eyes and minds.

It was bad, it was really bad, but we fitted in and moved on accepting things the way they are. It wasn't till a week ago that I knew I can no longer shut up. I’d come from school, exhausted as ever, running towards the fridge to get something into my system before I pass out when I noticed a young gentleman sitting with Mum and Dad in the living room. As I greeted him quickly, mum stood up and told me we needed to talk. Before following Mum to my room, I caught a glimpse of the young man’s face, smirking. Something about his stare unsettled me but I managed to swallow that and get the feeling out of my mind. But what I was told that night was never something to be swallowed. At first, I couldn’t fully comprehend what she was saying but I caught the words bride, marriage and no option. Then the truth slowly began to sink in, my mind tried to wrap itself around the fact. As I comprehended, there was only one face that popped in my mind. The face that sets my heart to a quick tempo the moment I see him, making music of its own rhythm. The face I look for every time I step towards the school-gate. The face that, if the harsh reality of our society didn't allow us to be together, accompanied me in my dreams. No, I am not getting married.

The tape came to an end, blackening the screen as a big THE END appeared. I didn't know where I was going, whom I would find or if I am even going to surrender and return back. I don’t know, and for the moment I didn't care. Instead, even at the hardest time where everything is cold and icy, I can still feel the warmth of the dreams and fantasies I wasn't allowed to have back there, covering me, supplying me with heat and energy. A kind of power I didn't know back there, it was a mixture of hope, daydreams, risks, but more importantly, possibilities and choices. At least, I got to say what I’d do next, whatever was the choice itself or the consequences. I was the chooser here, I chose to choose.

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