On days like these, 5 years ago, people of South Lebanon were heading back home. The war had ended.
We all had questions: “Will anything ever be the same again?“ “Will we be going to school this year?”, “How will the month of Ramadan be this year?” “Did any of my friends die that I didn’t know of?”
It wasn’t easy. After all, it was war. 33 days of waiting, all kinds of waiting. Waiting for all this to be over so we can go back home. Waiting for all this to be over because we are not leaving home. Waiting for all this to be over so our sons, the rebels, would come back home.
And it was over.
And it was over.
It is normal for people during war to have emotions so strong and so intense about everything. We were no different. But what we have that few other nations have is that no matter what emotions we have to fight with, we end up victorious. On land, and deep within us, we, the Lebanese, are always victorious.
July 2006: Diary of Emotions
We weren’t afraid we would die. We were afraid that someone we love would die and we would have to live through it. We were afraid of many things, but none of them was of Israel and its soldiers.
I remember we used to wake up after midnight, and turn on Al-Jazeera to watch the live broadcast from “Dahieh”. We had been in Beirut then. We would see the light from the explosion on TV, and know the sound is seconds away. We would shut our ears and hold our breaths. And there it would come.Our hearts would beat. And we would turn back to the TV to wait for the next one.
In times like these, we take a deeper look into every detail of the people we love. One would start thinking: If this building was to fall, how am i going to get my brothers and sisters out? Every night, one would not go to sleep until he tells them “please forgive me“ and “I love you all“, because tomorrow, he might not wake up.
In the midst of all the fear, the pain, the tears, and the stress, not for a second did we have doubt. We were certain victory was days away. When the media talked about how Hezbollah should back down just to spare the lives of the people, we felt furious. We preferred to die than back down. We had to keep going, Hezbollah had to keep going. And they did. We all did.
Every night, we tried to sleep by thinking tomorrow will be the last day. Tomorrow we'll go back to our home. Tomorrow.
Of course, that lasted for quite some time. Tomorrow did not come until August the 13th.
And Above All...The Pride
No matter where we went, when someone asks “To which country did you run to?” With all the pride in the world, we would say we would say: we didn’t run...we stayed here, we lived through, and we survived.
And yes, everything will be the same again.