Dunia is the weekly private journal of a girl born with disability, who uses a wheelchair and a respiratory ventilator machine yet is no different to any other person, read about her struggle, tribulation as she strives to seek independence. The character and events of the journal are pure fiction and bear no relation to anyone.
So now that I found a name for you what comes next? You see Dunia I am very new to this personal writing and honestly, I’m not quite sure why I am doing it. For years I have gone with the flow, taken each day as it comes, letting things go to please people and allowing others to control me. I have never felt I can fully open my heart to anyone, fearing that I would upset them, or knowing that they could not understand me. And I am not sure I trust them enough either. I don’t like being judged or misunderstood; yes, I know, who does? I just rather have a quiet and peaceful life.
I will not introduce myself to you but hopefully you shall slowly discover who I am, that will be easier as I doubt anyone is able to fully portray themselves. Name and age are irrelevant information in my view; they are just labels that society likes us to have to ease the process of categorisation that every human falls prey to. I have come to realise that age is just a number that seems to dictate what a person should be doing – Well not me, as in the eyes of others I am merely an undeveloped child (untrue, my body does the things female bodies do), a weak soul that needs guidance and protection. Is it because I am a woman in a male dominated world? Or a Muslim in a largely secular country? Or an Arab in a non-Arab country? Or quite simply because I am person living with disability? I don’t know the answer, although I have tried to figure it out in my head many times; all I know is that I have a deep feeling of un-belonging. I remember years ago during my undergraduate seminars at university, I came across a quote from Toni Morrison’s ‘Beloved’ where she says ‘there is no weaker voice than a black illiterate woman.’ Well, I am not sure if I agree with Ms Morrison. Has she ever tried seeing life through the eyes of others? How can she make such a judgement? Reading that made me so irritated that it put me off the book completely. I am not saying I have it tougher, but being educated does not guarantee you a ‘voice’; it is much more complex than that.
It was Eid couple of weeks ago, not the most exciting thing in London, Eid represent nothing more than the end of Ramadan, it lacks everything that I once knew of Eid as a child, maybe as you grow older the things that once made you happy fail to do so again, or possibly the experience of Eid in the west is quite different to the East, or it could just simply be that Eid is for children. I did not do anything special but the reason I am mentioning it was this comic incident, I got asked by a girl I met recently as to how ‘disabled people celebrate Eid?’ Hmmmmm! I did not know what to say or how to reply, all I managed to do is burst into discreet laughter!! I wanted to say that I along my alien friends do wheel spins on planet Mars. Hahaha! Yes, I am mean and sarcastic but not rude.
Dunia, I am tired now from typing, so I will bid you adieu.