June 25, 1983
It appears it has been nearly three years since I’ve written in this journal. I think I stopped writing around the time I stopped feeling. It’s like I’ve been sleepwalking these past few years, aware of what’s happening around me, but removed from it. I’ve distanced myself in order to protect myself. But something happened today that’s woken me up, and I can’t sleep anymore.
I had just finished my shift at the grocery store, and was walking back to my apartment. I was a few blocks from my place, not thinking about anything in particular, when a black van quickly pulled onto the side of the road. A man holding a pistol jumped out of the car and started towards me. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t scream. I couldn’t react at all. All I could think was, “this is it. It’s happening. Its over.” My body tensed, preparing for the man to grab me. To blindfold me, and drag me away.
And then he passed by me.
I remained frozen, but as I listened to the commotion behind me I understood. He wasn’t coming for me. I watch as he pushed the woman past me, and into his car. I watched and he drove away. I looked around and saw the other people on the street, some had glanced at the car driving away, most continued walking by- their eyes fixed firmly at the group. Nobody said a word.
When I got back to my apartment I collapsed on the floor. It could have been me who was taken just as easily. And no one would have helped, just as I didn’t help that woman. What has the regime turned our citizens into? They rely on our compliance to keep us oppressed. I can’t be a part of their system anymore.