Two years old.

I felt a prick. I thought it was probably just a mosquito or an ant.

I heard a whirring noise in the distance. It was a familiar sound; I had heard it so very often in the hours I was out and about. As it got louder, I noticed something big zooming in, approaching from afar. However, my poor vision did not help me in identifying what it was.

In the two minutes I was busy figuring out what was happening, my legs went weak. Unable to support my heavy weight, I was very soon down on my knees. The reverberations stopped, but new sounds were introduced – crackling of branches and shuffling of grass.

I felt a tender touch on the skin of my body and I heard a kind whisper from a recognisable voice. That intimate warmth calmed me down. It was then that I knew I was safe. I did not have to panic.

I knew what was happening. I could sense it was time. I saw it done to others before me. And it was like déjà vu to me. Indeed, it was two years passed.

A fabric was placed over my eyes but I remained conscious throughout. I tried to listen to the discussion amongst about six voices. Although it was in a language that I might not comprehend, I could sense the firmness, yet collectedness in their tones. It was going to be speedy, just like two years ago.

My weakness was tested and measured. But I knew they were not exploiting this vulnerability of mine. In fact, they were here to protect me from those who would. My ears were plugged; muffled sounds were only audible to me then.

I started to shake. My head began to vibrate. In a matter of minutes, it all stopped. My eyes were uncovered; my ears were unplugged. I blinked to adjust to the bright environment.

But my surroundings were seemingly different. I could see much more in the immediate space in front of me. The weakness on my face was gone. But it was never supposed to be a vulnerability, a liability.

The whirring noise sounded up again, but soon dissipated into the distance. I heard my child affectionately calling me out. I rubbed against his body, assuring him that I was fine; and it was going to be all right when he comes of age.

However, in my mind, I pondered to myself: Was I liberated? Was I free? Was I safe?

At least I was given another ounce of hope. I could likely see another two years. And the cycle would repeat itself.

Unfortunately, it seemed the only way to protect me from the dangers in this world. It was never my fault. And there are people who know the blame should not be placed on me. They share my burden, and they hurt when I hurt.



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