Beyond the kitchen walls

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
I've scrubbed the floors and washed the dishes.... can i go study now?

Submitted: July 16, 2017

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Submitted: July 16, 2017

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Bearing the massive wooden barrel on top of her head, young Amira scurried through to the laundry room. Those clothes weren't going to wash themselves. Gazing at the heap of filthy clothes, she let out a crippled sigh. "I guess I'll finish that book tomorrow then". Her brother rushed in, tugging at the massive sack of books. Another tiring day of college. He didn't notice her longing stare. Father had spent a hefty amount to get Alim to college, his grades were anything but remarkable. After all, he was going to take father's place at work.

Her thoughts were interrupted by the doorbell. Mother hurried and returned with a bundle of crisp envelopes. "Amira, there's something for you". 

A wave of contentment swept through Amira as she meticulously examined the letter addressed to her. Everyone was aware of her intellectual potential, so her outstanding high school grades were no surprise. "Congratulations my love" her mother cheerfully said.

The day went by fast, Amira anxiously paced back and forth in her little room, her cocoon, she liked to say. She kept thinking about a certain someone, someone who never praised her, noticed her or expected anything marvellous from her. A certain someone who she had been trying to please for the past 16 years. 

"So? What of it?". Her father's apathetic reaction sent a surge of fury and anguish burning through Amira. Sometimes she asked herself why she tried so hard, so relentlessly. She worked tirelessly day and night, she wanted to be someone important, she wanted to help people. She wanted to help herself. Suddenly, the anger and dejection melted away, a rebellious aura filled her. "I'm thinking of applying to college on the basis of a possible scholarship" she said bluntly. Her father gawked at her as if she had said the most preposterous thing in the history of the most preposterous things that had ever been said. "Where on earth did u get that idea?? I work day and night and provide you with food and a roof on your head and this is what your giving me in return?? You women are getting out of hand!!  Alina!!   look at a YOUR daughter!  She gets this attitude from you!". He darted to his room, slamming the wooden door behind him. 

It was dinner time, and the atmosphere was more distressing than usual. Amira stares listlessly at her plate. She felt all the ambition exit her body. All of her energy had been atrophied in trying to conceal the heavy tears that welled up in her eyes. 

A dark blanket enveloped the small town, the little house in the corner lay still. No one knew of the melancholy of a certain young soul that resided within the small house. *Knock knock*. Amira's muffled weeping was interrupted by an unwelcomed knock. "Are you alright?", Alim whispered as he peered into the room. Amira couldn't hear him over the booming sound of her sadness. "Amira...  do you really want to go to college?" Her eyes lit up at the word college. Her brother had always known about what she had wanted, and he had always known about their father. "I'll convince him, somehow". "It won't work", she replied woefully. There was a hopeless silence, the air betewen them stifled. "I didn't really want it to come to this.. but maybe you could......" his voice trailed off. Amira looked at him consciously. "Are you out of your mind??" she blurted. "Sshhhhh Quiet.." he hushed. "I know, i know... it's a long shot. I mean... I know you want this.." he said, his voice hinting a kind of sadness and regret. 

The next morning, Amira found her mind wandering away to last night's conversation with her brother. Running away to her uncle's house in England? Was that even a plausible option? That idea had always lingered in the back of her mind, but she never thought about it seriously until now. Her uncle was a cordial and open-minded man, it was hard to believe and he and her dad were brothers. If he knew about her situation, he would whisk her away immediately. Education was the most essential tool to survive in this modern world, for both men and women, he would always say at annual family gatherings. 

Sexism, another thing I'll never understand. Her only consolation, Amira would turn to her rose colored hard cover diary, an embodiment of her deepest feelings, desires and zeal. She continued. I don't understand men. I don't hate them, just can't comprehend what draws out these illogical mentalities. Women aren't good at just cooking, cleaning and shopping. There is so much more to us than that. Only men with fragile masculinity are caught with such deplorable thoughts. The kind of men who don't like going into a makeup store or a shoe shop, as if their masculinity will be compromised. The kind of men who find a woman's intellect and talent a threat to their macho egos. Men who think that crying and being emotional is a direct indication of weakness and cowardliness when they themselves are too afraid to express their emotions. Perhaps it's not even their fault. Upbringing is a key factor in defining a person's way of thinking. 

Perhaps if tearful little boys were comforted instead of shamed, there wouldn't be so many angry men struggling to express and empathize with emotions.- Lelia Schott.

So who's at fault then? 

 


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