I was in middle school then.
My little sister, who was three years younger than me, was also in middle school.
I was in 9th grade and she was in 7th grade.
My mother is ignorant and uneducated.
She harms others and herself.
She was never loved by her parents or siblings.
Girls to her were mere servants to their brothers, their mothers and their fathers.
I had a friend in the sixth grade,
And one day she called me,
Voice brimming with pride,
And told me that she had been circumcised.
She explained what it was.
She said her parents had taken her to a doctor for the operation.
They said that circumcision was a nice thing,
And it made girls look prettier.
The girl was bragging and stuff.
Then all of the sudden,
She asked me if I’d been circumcised.
“Why haven’t your parents done it for you?”
“I don’t know.”
My cousins and I were circumcised on the same day.
I didn’t feel anything because I was under anesthesia.
But I remember lying on the bed with my legs spread wide.
My relatives came over to congratulate us.
I was very embarrassed.
I was in the seventh grade,
When mama and baba told me:
“You’ve grown up and you need to be circumcised.”
I didn’t understand what was going to happen,
Or what exactly they were going to do.
All I understood was that if I didn’t remove that specific part,
It was going to grow to look like a male part.
For the longest time, perhaps until after highschool, I thought all girls were like me.
Then I found out that not all of them were like me.
I didn’t understand what it meant. What’s the difference?
I would always avoid thinking about the incident.
Until a black cloud formed in my mind, engulfing the memory of this incident.
We went with them,
And I don’t remember anything about that day,
Except for the doctor yelling at me.
She told me to take off my pants,
But I refused.
They gave me anesthesia,
And cut off a part of me.
I regained consciousness when I had become a “woman.”
Everything changed after that day.
Gender violence; sexual violence; physical violence; FGM; sex
I am different than most girls, who didn't know where they were being taken
I was in 3rd year of elementary school, so I understood things.
The thing is, it was I who noticed a protrusion in that area
And I felt it between my labia,
I didn't know what that was then.
It started when I was in elementary school.
When I was in fourth grade,
One of our neighbours took me to the doctor.
I was very scared.
At first they couldn’t find anesthesia,
They kept searching until they did.
Thank God for that.
They performed the procedure.
I lost a lot of blood.
The doctor was concerned.
But things turned out okay, thank God.
After that, I felt embarrassed when baba even looked at me.
It made me feel naked.
I was in primary school when I was circumcised.
I already knew about it,
Because my cousins had it done to them before me.
I thought it was a good thing,
And that it would mean that I was now a woman.
I knew where they were taking me.
I knew what was going to happen.
But I didn’t know how it was going to be done.