A Cry From Sambisa Forest. #BringBackOurGirls
As I write this piece, I remember a line from one of my favorite songs that says… “We can’t let them suffer, NO! we cannot turn away, RIGHT NOW, THEY NEED OUR HELPING HAND”….. If you have no idea as to what is happening, please follow this link and read the news before you proceed to read this letter. God bless all who have been walking and tweeting and making their voice heard.
I woke up with a smile on my face. I just had the most wonderful dream. There, I had been called to bar. I had eventually gotten what I wanted out of life. My poor parents, who had toiled night and day to see me attain this, were so proud of me that they beamed with satisfaction from where they sat in the audience. I could still feel the pressure from the Judge’s hand when he had personally congratulated me. I, the girl from the slum and who they thought would never make it, had risen above the circumstances and made my community proud. I was the first lady to achieve this, perhaps the only that would. Never in the history of Chibok Town had a female gone this far. I hoped I would be an inspiration to others like me who had no hope of achieving anything in life.
But first things first. I had a qualifying exam to prepare for. I would give my best, study hard and come out on top of my class. The Senior Secondary School Examination was a tough nut to crack, but I was not afraid. My mind was made up. I must not fail myself, my parents or my country, which I hoped to change someday. I heard many people have given up on Nigeria, but there was still hope and that hope was me. I believed I had what it took to make the change. But then things don’t always go as we plan, do they?
16th April was the day my dream was stolen out of my hands and everything had come crumbling down. They came pretending to be who they were not. We were deceived and acted out of fear. We thought we were being saved. Little did we know we had entered the devil’s net. We waited for help, but it never came. We hoped and prayed but it seemed we were on our own. Little by little, we were becoming dead to the world.
Now, as I watch from the ‘prison’ in which I have been kept bound with other girls, I must confess I am starting to doubt if my dream will ever come true. It has been… how many days now? I have lost count. I only ache to see the sunrise because I do not know if I will live through the night. Every day, they come in and pick some of us and we never see them again. We reduce in number and in faith. Will I ever get out of this? I don’t want to die or be married off in a strange land. I think dying is better because then I do not have to worry about a hopeless tomorrow. But every time, I open my eyes to a brand new day, something sparks inside me. I am alive today and as long as the ray of the sun keeps shining through the roof every morning, I will never lose hope.
If anyone happens to stumble upon this piece of paper, please tell the world that we, Chibok’s lost treasures, are still hopeful that they have not given up on us and tell my mother I shall return soon. She must keep the pot of soup warm. How I miss the taste of her food! Keep trying, keep praying and never stop believing. Someday, this storm will end.
My name is Aisha and I am a daughter of Chibok and the future of Nigeria.