(לפוסט הקודם של פאדי > כאן)
אנחנו גרים ליד הגבול המצרי, פעמים רבות אנחנו שומעים פיצוצים או מטוסים שעוברים לידנו, הילדים נבהלים מאוד וישר נלחצים ומתחילים להגיד “אבא מלחמה אבא מלחמה”. לא אשקר ואגיד שאני לא מפחד מרעש המטוסים, זה מחזיר אותי לימי המלחמה וליום הפציעה, אבל אני משתדל להישאר רגוע ולהראות לילדים שאני חזק ושאין מלחמה עכשיו ושלא צריכים לפחד.
עבדאללה ומחמד פחדו ללכת לבית ספר לבד, הם פחדו שתפרוץ מלחמה ושיפלו טילים שוב. אמא שלהם היתה מלווה אותם בשבוע הראשון לבית הספר שנמצא 45 דק’ הליכה מהבית שלנו. היום תודה לאל הם מסוגלים ללכת לבד.
הבית שלנו עדיין הרוס בעקבות המלחמה, תיקנו כמה שאפשר אבל עדיין חסרים בו הרבה דברים בסיסיים כמו חלונות, קרמיקה ודברים אחרים, אין לנו כסף כדי לתקן. פניתי להרבה עמותות בעזה אך לא קיבלתי עזרה משמעותית, קיבלתי קופסאות של אוכל מידי פעם, הדברים האלה לא באמת עוזרים.
רוב הזמן אני בבית, יושב וחושב על המצב שלי ועל העתיד, כל יום שמגיע הוא יותר קשה מהיום שעבר. יש לי חברים טובים שלא עוזבים אותי, תמיד מנסים לעודד ומקפידים לבקר אותי ולשכנע אותי לצאת איתם. לפני המלחמה נהגתי לצאת לבלות איתם כמעט כל לילה ואהבנו לשחות בים. היום זה בלתי אפשרי. גם אם אלך לבקר חברים אני לא מסוגל להישאר אצלם יותר משעה. קשה לשבת על כיסא הגלגלים יותר משעה בגלל שכל לחץ הגוף נופל על הרגליים וזה מאוד כואב. את רוב היום אני מעביר בשכיבה על הגב בבית. קשה.
I spent a week at the European Hospital. The doctors determined that if I stayed there longer, I wouldn’t make it, and therefore referred me to A-Zeitoun, a private hospital in Egypt, where I was hospitalized for two months. After I started to recover and was able to speak a little, my cousin, who was my escort to Egypt, asked me what I had in my right eye and whether I was able to see with it. At that moment, it dawned on me that I couldn’t see out of my right eye. I was consequently referred to another hospital, Al-Fatimiya, also in Egypt. The doctor there told me: “Your eye is in a very bad state; don’t let anyone touch it unless you are treated abroad”.
The hospital in Egypt was fantastic. I was well treated by the Egyptians. The people who came to visit their hospitalized relatives there addressed me every time and asked me whether I was well and whether I spoke with my family. When they heard that I didn’t, they brought me a mobile telephone and gave me 50 Egyptian pounds every day so that I could talk to my kids. I missed my kids a whole lot, and kept all of the money I was given in order to chat with them.
In Egypt, I was promised to be fitted with prostheses for my amputated legs, but when I was informed that the treatment was over and that I had to return to Gaza, I was surprised to learn that I was going back without artificial limbs. My dream today is to be fitted with normal prostheses and be able to get back to my normal life. This is what I desire the most!
Ten days before going back to Gaza, I sent the family pictures of me on Viber. My oldest son refused to watch them. My wife told him, “This is your father”, and he replied: “You’re kidding me, that’s not him, that’s not my Dad”.
Indeed, when I got back home, the kids did not recognize me, saying “This is not my Dad”. I looked very different, tired and exhausted. Whereas before the injury I had weighed 85 kilograms, on my return I was only 50. It took my kids a while to grow accustomed to my new situation, but so far they have not overcome their fears and anxieties from the war.
My daughter Farah, aged 3, asked me, “Daddy, where are your legs?” I started crying, and told her: “my sweet child, Insha’Alla they will mount better legs on me”. She replied: “It’s the Jews that did this to you, I know”.
Medically speaking, I haven’t finished my treatment yet; I need treatment in my legs and eye. Here in Gaza, further treatment is unavailable. I would need to get out of Gaza, and this, to my regret, is not so much of an option. I experience excruciating pain in my legs, and there are nights where the pain is so intense, that I can’t sleep. I am on a waiting list to travel to Germany to have prostheses fitted, together with many others like me.
We live next to the Egyptian border, as I mentioned, and often get to hear explosions or airplanes flying by. The children panic and immediately become stressed, and start saying: “Dad, war, Dad, war”. I won’t lie and say that I’m not afraid of the airplanes’ noise—it takes me back to the war days and the day of the injury—but I try to stay calm and show my kids that I’m strong and that there is no war and no need to be afraid.
Abdullah and Mohammed were afraid to go to school alone, they were afraid that war would break out and that missiles would fall again. During the first week of school, their mother accompanied them to school, which is a 45 minute walk from our house. Today, Thank God, they can do the route alone.
Our house is still in ruins due to the war. We fixed as much as we could, but there are still lots of basic stuff missing in it, like windows, ceramic tiles and more that we don’t have money to fix. I have approached many associations in Gaza but received only little help, such as the occasional food boxes, but these things don’t really help.
I spend most of my time at home, sitting and thinking about my situation and the future. Every new day is harder than the one before. I have good friends who are not giving up on me, always trying to encourage and taking care to visit me and convince me to go out with them. Before the war, I used to go out and hang out with them almost every night, and we liked to swim in the sea. This is no longer possible today. Even if I go visit friends, I can’t stay at their place for more than an hour. It’s hard to sit on the wheelchair for over an hour, because the whole pressure of the body falls on the legs, which is very painful. I spend most of my days lying on my back at home. It’s hard.