2006-11-21 @ 11:07 a.m. We were taken, against our will, by bus to somewhere I didn't recognize. People that were scared enough to scream were hit hard in the head with the back of their guns. Emergency exits on the bus were all welded shut so we couldn't run. There were 6 of them on the bus with us, guns pointed, yelling in a language I didn't understand and couldn't even recognize. The other hostages seemed familiar to me; I might have seen them in passing here or there on the streets, but I didn't know their names. I only recognized the fear in their eyes, because I had it too.
I was 7 months pregnant when I was taken. The anxiety alone was giving me pains you couldn't imagine, but I didn't dare utter a word. A woman towards the front of the bus was looking around nervously, as if she was going to do something stupid. Sure enough she did.
We approached some sort of checkpoint, and the woman ran towards the windshield of the bus. Scared enough to risk her life, she broke through it on impact and rolled off the hood. Others screamed, those keeping us yelled at the driver, and next thing I knew we were moving forward...two noticble bumps under the tires as we sped off. Screams were stopped by blows to the head, and I couldn't bring myself to look behind us, as no doubt I'd see the desperate womans body laying in the middle of the street.
We arrived at what looked like a military base, armed gunmen watching as we rolled in. Ordered to leave the bus, we did so in quiet...the thoughts of that poor woman still with us.
Piled into a large room with others previously taken, we were handed text books of some kind and a notebook, and ordered to sit on the ground. I looked around in disbelief that I was in this position, and in pain as the stress on my unborn child grew. A boy no older than 20 was next to me, studying his textbook. "How long have you been here," I asked him. "Don't talk, just study and you'll live."
I didn't open the book the rest of that day. Instead I tried to calm myself, watched the new arrivals take in the scene as I was, looking for ways out, knowing there weren't any.
Darkness fell quickly across the compound, and my young neighbor advised me that it would be best to sleep and not worry about getting out of there. He wrote me a note in his notebook:
You will not get out of here alive, so don't even try. I've seen many try to leave, only to die before they reach the door. Do what they say, study what they've asked you to study, and speak to no one. You'll be safer that way.
I looked at him with tears in my eyes, rubbing my stomach to show him that I had more than my life to worry about. He shook his head and mouthed an "I'm sorry" before he rolled over and went to sleep.
I curled up, knees inward, praying to Gods I no longer believed in, to save me and my child. The more I prayed, the stronger the pain I felt. It became unmanagable, and I cried out. A guard ran over to me and hit me in the mouth, ordering me to keep quiet. A gentelman from across the room yelled in my defense, "can't you see there's something wrong with her? She's pregnant!" He came running over to me and held my hand. I squeezed his so tightly, the pain overwhelming, and I knew at that moment my baby was dying inside me.
The man who hit me said something to another in that language I still can't place. I don't remember much of what happened next, as the cramping pains took over any normal thoughts I had left. I curled up, crying and screaming. The two guards came over to me, pulled the man away from me, and one of them shot me in the stomach.
The pain ended. I remember that much before I passed out. The feeling of emptyness was something I had never felt before. And it was that feeling that made me want to write this down, the strangest nightmare I've ever had. It felt so real it was frightening. But I'm glad it's over.
My Past with No Future