What I would give, to feel your warm breath on my neck again, as I carried you to your bed after you’d fallen asleep in my arms. Your legs were twitching; you were dreaming already, and your breath warm and heavy. I hoped your head had taken you somewhere innocent and safe, somewhere beautiful where you could be a little child for a few hours.
What I would give to feel your tiny hands cup my face when I cried and hearing you say “it’ll be okay Jadey. We got each other. Let’s sing a song.” What I would give to be able to look up from my tears and see that expression in your eyes; so pained, so tragically sorrowful…and yet, sparkling with childish mischief, warm, kind and young, eager, and trying to cheer me up. How much light shone from your eyes, despite the hell you were living in…
What I would give to hear you yelling when one of the men pinned me down. To hear you and the others yell angrily, and run at the man. Your feelings of fear seemed to vanish, you all just wanted to protect me and the others. What I would give to be back in a place where tiny children can overpower several grown men.
What I would give to see you laughing, despite the fact you were bleeding and limping, and shaking like a leaf. You all laughed – “did you see his face? He got a fat nose.” And you laughed some more. A twinkling sound, ringing through the air, so even those more injured who were bed-bound could smile, for they knew the strength of laughter. What I would give to see your cheeky faces, your beaming smiles and your wide, sweet eyes.
What I would give to be able to hold you again, and run my fingers through your hair, and sing to you. To watch the terror and pain leave your eyes as comfort and love defeated all the hurt. To watch sleepiness overcome you, and you turn from a frightened child to a small, sleepy child, clinging to me. What I would give to hear your steady heartbeats; your strong, resilient hearts beating no matter what – beating love and strength, constantly, day after day.
What I would give to hear your squeals of excitement when you saw me. To feel you all clambering over me, and kissing my face and arms. How we sat together and talked about nonsense, and played hide and seek in that hell. How we made daisy chains outside, and somehow managed to turn away from the fear that haunted us.
What I would give to be with you right now, whilst I feel so lost and alone. Whilst I feel so trapped, and so afraid. What I would give to have you with me, your laughter and strength reminding me of how to fight. To remind me what love is, and how to keep hold of it. I’m so scared, and I’m so hurt, and I am so unbelievably exhausted and sad… and I don’t have you here.What I would give…