Carry It In My Heart
Each of us carries a bit of our childhood within us. I do too, I carry my childhood in my heart.
I remember how I locked myself in a car ignorantly. I remember how my dad struggled to get me out of it without hurting me. I remember how I used to bug my dad for one more candy. I remember dancing in a frock weaved with butterflies. I remember my dad calling me home to remind me that my favourite movie was on. I remember how I rode my bicycle in those gleeful evenings.
I remember how my dad’s friend found me alone in a room and kissed me. I remember how I had to rush to the bathroom to get over the feeling of being kissed. I remember how every friend of mine was playing outdoors, while I was stuck playing with his penis. I remember telling my mom how dirty I felt when he did that. I remember how she shed tears and promised to protect me. I remember how she kept it a secret from my dad. I remember feeling hopeless at nights.
I remember how a senior girl from my school took me to her home and how she played kisses with me. I remember feeling dirty again. I remember being molested again. I remember how my mom looked at me as though I did something grave again. I remember feeling like a sinner.
I remember absorbing the truth that life isn’t a fairy tale while every kid of my class believed in one. I remember trying to drink detergent wishing that would clean that dirt inside me. I remember how nothing changed about how I felt even after drinking it. I remember how scared I was to tell my dad about what was going on with me. I remember burying those secrets in my heart. I remember how vulnerable the world made me.
Even after all these years, every Sunday when my dad’s friend walks into our house as though he did nothing wrong, I feel dirty all over again. Even after all these years, the senior girl from my school attends our dinner parties elatedly, I feel my helplessness. Even after all these years, when my boyfriend asks me about my childhood, tears roll down my cheeks.
I carry this burden in my heart. I carry it in my heart.
But, do they carry it inside them too?
~ Pranavi Muvva | Edited by Afreen Zeb