I am speaking on Skype with my good friend Ali, who I have been talking to more frequently these days.
He lives in a scary world that doesn’t make sense to me outside of what I have seen in dramatic movies.
But this is no movie. In fact, this is painfully real.
He is pacing in a dark area near where he lives that is devoid of other people, hoping for privacy and safety.
A blurred, shadowy image of him appears at times while we talk.
I have been trying to help him out of his impossible situation in Afghanistan.
And we are trying to say goodbye. But the goodbye won’t quite come as we keep thinking of final nice things to say to each other. And then it happens.
I tell him to say hello to his family and he says this, in the softest and most heartfelt voice:
“Laura, my mother said to tell you something.”
I say, “Yes, please tell me.”
And he says, “Laura, my mother wants you to know that she is praying for your children as you are putting aside time to take care of her child.
My blood is forced from my body by my heart as it shatters into infinite tiny pieces.
For a mother’s love flies as freely as a bird.
Knowing no boundaries.
Such as oceans. Or borders. Or lines that are drawn in the sand between warring nations.
Silent hot tears streaked my face as I held it together long enough to fake a normal goodbye.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Travis May
Photos: Pixoto/Mohd Safwan