Fear has ruled me, fooled me, blinded me, crushed me.
Fear waged battle with me and took away my happiness.
The fears of my parents became my own… don’t do that.
don’t let us down because we have dignity and pride…

I wanted to dance. Fear locked my feet and arms.
I wanted to shout back at men on the street.
Fear told me only bad girls talk back… don’t shame your family…

Fear caused me to hate myself and feel inferior.
Fear caused me to bury love and give up my rights because of other’s judgments.
Fear kept me from joining the crowd and made me lonely.

Fear blocked my decision to start a new journey because I feared
the price I might pay… would I lose my family,
or end up in the wrong place with wrong people?

Fear followed me in my dreams,
preventing me from screaming,
locking my tongue
in my mouth.
I tried to run.
Fear numbed my legs.

Today after 24 years I questioned fear.

Why fear without trying?

Today I learned not to fear failure.
I can learn from the lesson, if I try my best.
Today I promised myself not to fear criticism and judgments,

if I take a new path or fight for the rights of all women.

Today I defeated fear.

I learned I can do better without fear.
Today I started to enjoy change and challenges.
Today I erased fear and negative ideas from my mind.

I will enjoy taking risks and walking down new paths.
I believe in a rainbow in the sky.
I feel peace in my mind, my heart and my soul.

By Marzia

Photo by Steve Hanna