A Misunderstood Conflict

     “Mujahid, if you believe you are so damn grown, then leave my damn house.”

     Amazing, to think even now, these words shot out from the mouth of my  mother. A woman whom I assumed would always be my caregiver, supporter, and provider. The cold tears rushed down my burning face, staring into my mother’s eyes wondering how things escalated to this point. I turn my head to the side, feeling the scratch she had previously made on my neck; I noticed the blood that had dripped from my shoulder onto my fresh white under shirt.

     “Mother,  please. I simply wish to talk. I did not mean for any of this. I feel like…”

     “No, Mujahid. I do not wish to talk, please leave my house!!”

     I noticed her trying to let get loose of me hugging onto her, begging and crying for her understanding. To my mother, holding on was a sign of defiance, and she took holding on as me fighting her. It was not until she hastily walked to the knife drawer I knew I should leave. As I darted out the house, the breeze went through the torn holes in my bloody shirt and down my spine, and my feet sent a sting through my body with every rock, stick, and dead leaf I stepped on as I ran barefoot through countless backyards. Eventually I reached my old neighborhood friend who appeared to not be home, and I struggled as every muscle was too weak to lift my body over the fence. Sitting on the dead grass, I realized that I had run away.

     I sat in the backyard feeling homeless. I did not have a phone, debit card, pants, socks, food, but simply the torn white t-shirt I wore when I left, and my underwear. The questions began to pile, should I run away and leave my family unaware of my location? Would anyone miss me? Would anyone forget me if I… just disappeared? I prayed. I bounced questions around in my head asking for the way to go.

     “God, is there a reason you have placed me in this situation? Do you want me to just leave my old life to enter a new one, or was this so I can take the hardship from others. Please let me know, give me a sign to stay or go.”

     Instantaneously, I heard my friend’s car pull into the driveway, I quickly realized that I needed to leave. I stood as I wiped off all the dirt from the ground and the tears from my eyes, and attempted to rid of the dried up blood stained on the shirt. I lifted myself over the fence once more, waiting for friend’s family to enter the house before jumping to avoid being caught. I walked on the cold curb feeling embarrassed. As cars drove by the parent’s kids stared in wonder why I looked as if I survived a kidnapping.  As I paused before my street, I noticed my mother, my caregiver, sitting on the porch, face cemented into her hands. She slowly lifted her gaze to me. She saw the young boy whom she adored, and I smiled back realizing that the incident was for no reason. I still loved my mother, and she still loved me, I felt my body begin to tingle once more. Except only this time, it was for tears of joy. the sun warmed my back as I strolled down the sidewalk looking into my mother’s eyes. I felt complete happiness, it felt great to be home.

– Malik Twyman, The Haverford School, Class of 2017

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