Worthlessness, Pain, or Despair

Marita Joulfayan


Was it supposed to teach me something? 

Worthlessness, pain and despair. 

Did it really happen? Or was it a bad nightmare? I wish I could comprehend my feelings; what are they yelling? 

Worthlessness, pain or despair. 

Was it supposed to make me cry? My eyes swelling, my heart aching. “She is not answering. Where is she?” “Is she safe? Call her again, now!” Tears are falling, my hands are shaking.

Worthlessness, pain and despair. 

Pain, an unpleasant feeling; may be a tingle, a sting, a burn or an ache.  May be sharp or dull; may come and go. However, this was something else. I could not catch my breath; I had a fear of something unknown. It was not just unpleasant, but as if my insides were being twisted by only Satan’s hands. I did not know what it was; not just a momentary one, but it scarred me permanently. 

Constant pain, not leaving, it still hurts. “Did she call back? Check again …it’s ringing. Come on, answer.” “No answer!” 

Dismay— a feeling of fear or shock or worry. They say dismay comes, but soon, you will be able to get rid of it. Nonetheless, I was showered in dismay. I was lost in a mysterious space which had deadly words written all over it. “Where is she? Why is she not answering?” “There is no way something happened to her, right?” “I mean, come on. No way!” I was in denial at some point, my anxiety could not handle it.

Two hours of “Not answering.” Two hours of waiting and denying simply turned into despair.

Despair, losing all hope and any ounce of confidence I had. I had completely lost it. It felt like I was in a very big dark hole, a lonely one, may I add. It was two hours of putting my hands on my face, despair washing over me and claiming its territory. But I forced myself to concentrate. “We should wait and have hope,” was all I was trying to concentrate on. 

 It became a routine. Sacred prayers, running in circles, crying, pacing the floor, and watching the news for hours and hours and hours. Then we heard a sound.  “It’s ringing! Answer it.” “They found her! Oh, thank God” “They found her, she is alright.”

All was fine. Happily, ever after right? Think again. 

Fast forward a little while later. I could not help it; it haunted me every night. It made me question everything and anything. 

“Was it supposed to hurt me and turn me dead inside? Why?” “For what?”

Lives lost, glass shattered, blood split, homes burnt; turned to remedies, hearts broken…And there it was, the haunting sound in my head, over and over again. BOOM! Port explosion. 

“Who would have thought?”

“Was it worth it?”

All it took was a few minutes. A charming neighbourhood looking like a neighbourhood disrupted by a massacre. I wanted to be me again, but I struggled to find myself. I was lost in these questions; interrogating myself as if I knew. Continuously asking myself. “What do you feel?” 

Worthlessness, pain or despair.

People died as if they were worthless. I felt the pain that I still do every time I hear a loud sound, and I lost hope in my so-called beloved country.  As I sit looking out the window, I see people trying to build what was destroyed. I see unity. But I also see trauma, loss, helplessness. Maybe it was not meant to teach me something, or maybe it was exactly meant to teach me something. Maybe it was not meant to hurt me, or maybe it was exactly meant to hurt me. Maybe it was not meant to make me feel dead inside, or maybe it was exactly meant to make me feel dead inside. Maybe it was not meant to make me cry, or maybe it was exactly meant to make me cry.

What do I know? I am just a girl with some words still trying to figure out her life. But I do know that they made me feel worthless, they caused me a lot of pain, and they and ruined my mental health. It was the worst, traumatic, unforgettable experience of my life. Maybe one day the tables will turn, and I will make them pay for what they have done. So, I ask myself again. Worthlessness, pain or despair?  But this time, I will answer.

No one is worthless enough to be treated this way, pain is my constant reminder of how cruel and inhumane it was, and despair is something that I now have gained towards my utterly beloved Lebanon.