Several years ago, while watching “Passport” of the immortal
, I wasn’t able to understand the enormous feeling of stress that had overcome me throughout the film. I was entirely convinced and sure that the events described in the film had, of course, not happened, but nonetheless the tragedy and injustice of the film affected me deeply.
I couldn’t deal with the hopeless and confused situation that the main character of the film found himself in. I couldn’t deal with his attempt to find a way out.
If someone had told me at the end of the film that a similar event and an even worse fate was awaiting me just a few years down the line, I doubt my heart would have withstood the shock. I would have collapsed and passed away on the spot. I wouldn’t even have had the strength to imagine such a situation.
But as wise people say – even the wisest of people end up facing the most difficult of problems.
Two months ago, when I arrived in the country where I now reside, a cheerful and kind flight attendant saw my son sitting on my lap. She gave him a passport cover.
I didn’t betray my thoughts at the moment, but this present was a painful one, because my son, who is 2.5 years old, still doesn’t have a passport. And I have been fighting for the past 2.5 years to get him one.
We accepted the passport cover. I looked at this empty cover the entire journey, and I thought. How could I have explained to this girl, that the country of which I am a citizen has been taking its revenge out on my son because of his parents? How could I have told her that the cover will remain empty, because my son doesn’t have a passport. How could I have explained to her, that we got on this plane only with the help of the United Nations, which was to accompany us through customs…
I sat, holding in my hands the light blue passport cover with a drawing of a plane on the front. The plane resembled a small, baby whale. In my other hand, I gripped my son, and just barely restrained myself from breaking out in tears.
Everything was in the past, I thought. All of this. I took my son who had been in Georgia for more than two years as if in prison, from where he could not leave because of our residency status. And I was able to get him out of there only thanks to journalistic organizations. But, remembering everything I had felt over the past two years, the situations in which I ended up, the hopes which were dashed one right after another…it just got harder and harder to hold back my tears.
Everyday, I would look my son in the face and feel guilty before him. When I looked at him, I wondered, ‘what disgusting thing could I have done to my country so that they would dare to punish not only me but my innocent son? Maybe I stole a few million dollars? Maybe I killed someone? Maybe I drowned oil workers in the sea – oil workers who brought money to the country and in whose fate I was uninterested.
What have I done?
I was thinking about this, and all the attempts and times I tried to find a way out of this situation over the past 2 years. These approaches weren’t that different from the efforts of the protagonist in “Passport.”
But, I had to be strong. Very strong. But now, my limp nerves and body have already stopped listening to me.
When we first arrived, I hid the passport cover at home so that I wouldn’t see it, and so that I wouldn’t be reminded of what I want to forget.
Today, my son received the passport of the country where we reside. I got out the passport cover, and wrapped it around the passport.
For the first time in 2 years and 7 months, I can breathe without a lump in my throat…