Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 3

Zainab dreams of the wind in her skirt and the chirping of the birds as the warmth

of the sunrise halos her twirling silhouette. The flush in her cheeks along with the
exhilaration flowing through her blood makes every moment ineffably poignant.
Throughout this however, a feeling of dread snakes its way into her gut and coils
itself deep inside, knotting her stomach. The cold in her skin starts seeping into her
bones. The suns rays feel warmer and her body feels heavier. Her throat cinches
and she feels the blood rush from her head as her feet fail to find purchase and she
loses consciousness. The impact of her supposed fall jars her awake. The sweat and
ache make her shudder, helping to align her thoughts and even though she lost
consciousness before her cheek could feel the hard ground, her body remembers
the impact all too well.
Attempting to compose her thoughts, she reaches for the glass of water alongside
her medication. After chasing her pill with water, she attempts to reach for the
wheelchair and ends up falling out of bed, driving the wheelchair further away in the
process. She sucks air through her teeth and clenches her fists, eyebrows now
drawn together in a furrow as she tries to gain composure. Just long enough to pass
the rising bile in her throat and ignore the prickling in her eyes. Her mother bustles
in, worry pinching her features and she tries to help Zainab back up. Zainab recoils
out of indignity and resentment, but then immediately regrets it. Her mother had
always given her room for independence, something that Zainab relished. So much
so that this equally dependent circumstance was crushing.
The same nightmares had been plaguing her since the crash. They all had variations
to it though. Once she dreamt that her mother had been the one to get caught in
the crash. Another time she imagined herself as a child, dancing on the street as
the same car came hurtling down with her in it. Improbable, of course. But lately her
mind had taken liberties in coming up with sinister scenarios every other day.
However, perpetual was the sound of the skidding tires and the rev of the engine.
Something that always made her mind violently lurch as shes wake up, the
heaviness of her legs pronounced.
Days later, sitting alone in the dry midsummer humidity, Zainab cautions to the
terrace and envisions her past self dancing there. Caught between a rock and a
hard place, she watches enraptured, covetous. Her aunt had always chastised her
about practicing on the terrace. Its where the sun could always find purchase and
shed talk about how an unforgiving tan would ruin Zainabs complexion. But Zainab
was always grateful to find time for rehearsal, regardless of where it was. The
ground where Zainab practiced most of her footwork had a well worked sheen to it.
She now watches a ghosted version of herself; the dynamism of Zainabs past self
differentiating them worlds apart. The familiar flight of her hands makes her own
fingers twitch and she digs her fingers into her palms. The air around her feels taut,
an indrawn breath. She unclenches her fists. The flush at her fingertips the
insinuation of an ache. She feels like she has aged lifetimes within the past months.
Convinced by an old friend, Zainab grudgingly agrees to leave her house for some
air. They go to the mall and as she is wheeled around, she notices a hush of
whispers travel through the general crowd. Some people stare unabashedly, others
avert their eyes in consensual discomfort. None dare to approach her. Zainab
forcefully trains her gaze to her lap and fumbles with her fingers, her mind pulling to
a time when she wouldve welcomed the attention. Zainab and her friend sit at a
caf where she tries to goad her into the conversation. Her responses are
monosyllabic. She plays with her food trying to summon the likeliness of a smile.
Though her friends attempts are appreciated, they are in vain.
At the psychologist, Zainab is mostly unresponsive as the woman behind the desk
continues to talk. Glassy eyed, she half-heartedly wrestles to keep her mind in
check. As a local celebrity, Zainab was never a stranger to epic amounts of
attention, but scrutiny as such made her feel alien. In a way that was ugly.
Snatching ever so often on her surroundings, her gaze ultimately trains itself on the
womans mouth; the way her lips shape themselves around her words, slightly
slurring the consonants. The ticking of the clock gets louder as the session comes to
a close. That night Zainab stares at the ceiling, the slight of her forlorn expression
rendered in the moonlight. Her eyes helplessly trace the patterns on the walls and
her ears stay captive to the tick of the clock. Her eyelids feel heavy and irksome. In
time, strobes of sunlight stream through the curtains, signifying the culmination of
yet another sleepless night.
Plagued especially by her swirling emotions, Zainab feels mocked seeing how her
various medication has slowly inched itself across her dresser, replacing the dregs
of her past life. The trophies and ribbons; her first pair of ghungaroos and several
handmade trinkets from her fans. Fueled by despair, she pushes away her
wheelchair and attempts to stand and reach one of the clear plastic bottle of
medication. Flailing in attempts to catch herself on the edge of the table just a few
feet ahead, she falls feeling the brunt of the impact on her side. Rocked by the
impact, the little bottle rolls of the edge of the table and to her side. Resolutely, she
swiftly takes off the top and swallows a handful of tablets dry. Moments pass and
eventually her mother finds her like that, lying prone on the floor. Seeing a bottle of
pills on the floor nearby makes the hysteria bubble in her throat. After helpless
minutes of prodding Zainab, her mother leaves to seek help.
Elsewhere, reconciling her senses with her body, Zainab recognizes the dryness in
her throat, and the dizziness in her head. She looks up and involuntary pulls her
hand up and averts her eyes. The harsh light of the sun shadowing the better part
of her features. Having averted her eyes, her gaze travels down and upon seeing
her toes she realizes shes standing. Her mouth parts slightly, the disbelief and
wonder filling up the space in between, where her words fail to form. Her hands feel
the length of her legs and her eyes level to a bench ahead where she sees the
ghungaroo and wheelchair side by side. Seeing these two objects, alongside, so
straightforward and crude, makes the answer ever-more obvious. This twosome,
which so strongly epitomizes a fixation that has existed on both ends of the
spectrum. Zainab picks up her ghungaroos and sits in her wheelchair. Conclusively,
she ties the ghungaroos.
Returning as per schedule, the conversation at the psychologists isnt so one-side
anymore. Zainab feels more comfortable to share her thoughts enjoys her regained
confidence. Elsewise, Zainab sits with her friend, gesturing animatedly whilst
laughing alongside her. They spend more time with one another and Zainab takes
small steps to welcome opportunities to be introduced to new people. In addition to
that, having signed up for an elementary school dance program, Zainab now takes
pride in talking about her disability and the way it has helped reinforce her passion
for dance. Zainab matches her hand swings to the rhythm of the music and is able
to find, in this moment, a sense of quiet calm. Her heart swells at the sight of these
children in front of her, who mimic her movements with such childish delight. She
feels honored to have the chance to inspire a love for dance for the tender aged.