I wish to overcome.
This emptiness of fear.
The incompleteness of life.
The lingering search for my innocence.
The memories of the gruesome cut.
The fierce grip and my tremble under your gaze.
The masking of my face and my soul.
The mishandling of my body.
The pains never expressed and the scars forever inflicted.
I wish to overcome this feeling of brokenness, of incompleteness.
I wish to reveal.
This truth that took years to unfold, locked up and never told.
This desire to expose you and tell the truth about you.
The secrets kept deep inside the disgraceful devilish act.
The sharpening of the tools. The beating. The torture. The aftermath.
I wish to tell the world the counting of the cutting days is gone.
That female genital mutilation is violence against girls and a crime against humanity.
That it is dehumanizing and a total humiliation.
Yet generation after generation little girls are mutilated.
Little girls with no means to protect themselves or have a say over their bodies.
It serves to please a culture, to increase prospects for marriage and fetch high demands.
I wish to reveal that If Allah wanted girls not to be born with their organs he’d not have created them with it.
I wish to fight.
I wish to tell the world to stop the fixation on what girls and women should do or not do.
When to eat, to sit properly, to be obedient, to be quite.
When they’re too afraid to meet the eyes of survivors, they call them names; westernised, loose, disobedient.
That FGM is a way to control the sexuality of women and girls.
This brutal rite, based on our so-called culture.
This disproportionate abuse against the girl-child.
Don’t they get it? The future of our nation depends on our healthy girls.
That their protection and education is our wealth.
Has anybody bothered to ask girls about their experiences, their opinions?
The greed, serving the interests of a few.
Mothers, sick of worry of getting the blame for not cutting their daughters & not belonging.
I wish to fight this control of girls’ bodies & minds and the obsession on how they should sit, eat, speak, behave.
I wish to celebrate.
The now visible bruises on my face because I have spoken.
That I can now speak and I am done being weak.
That I am a flame that burns in many broken souls.
That I will be the yawn on survivors’ faces upon the break of dawn.
That I will make no excuses for the woman I have become.
This winner in me. The tapped wealth in reason and resource in me.
That I celebrate the voices of other survivors. Together, we have spoken.
And we have overcome the fear of losing bond. Together we’ll rise above.
I celebrate our voice, the voice of Africa’s youth, that will be heard.
I wish to celebrate the way Allah has created me for He has perfected me the way I am.