It is often difficult to accurately remember exact moments from our tainted and muddled pasts. Our brains, in an attempt to protect us, contaminate our recollections, fading some memories while augmenting others. Therefore, our memories are not a recollection of events as they were, but rather a biased perception of past proceedings. Consequently it is tricky to separate the truth from our reality. However, some memories are true representative of the events they signify, and the majority of such memories are often accompanied by a physical manifestation, a leftover which serves as a salient guardian of truth. The incident I recall left permanent damage on my brother, an injury whose presence can neither be denied nor exaggerated.
I was twelve at the time, and my brother, Wahab, was eight. It was summer time in Pakistan, and we were a bunch of idiots back then. Our days would start with playing cricket progressing onto water balloon fights and ending with a healthy dose of Pokémon cartoons. We used to be friends with a neighboring 9th grader, Ahmed. He had a computer with the latest video games, and he was always up for a game of Cricket. I used to be in awe of him and was happy for the computer and real games of Virtual Cop and cricket. After all, what 9th grader hangs out with 6th and 3th graders? But he was the person responsible for half blinding my brother. In retrospect, what 9th grader does?
That day started as usual, it was a Sunday so we were allowed to sleep in until ten am. Around mid day our neighbor came. I was sitting in the shade of a tree talking to my sister when I looked up to see that Ahmed and Wahab had begun throwing pebbles at each other. I do not remember who started it, but I was soon talking to my sister. A couple of minutes later, I looked up again. I saw my brother poke his head from behind a tree. I saw Ahmed pick up a large stone. I saw him pitch it at full speed towards my brother. I saw the stone hit my brother’s eye.
I saw the stone take my brother’s left eye out.
I tried to tackle Ahmed, but he easily pushed me aside. In a state of panic Ahmed hopped the wall and ran off leaving my family with a bawling eight year old. In the next few minutes Wahab’s left eye was a bloody mess. It was a good half an hour before my father, a skilled surgeon, was able to stem the steady trickle of blood. Over the coming months, we would learn that not only was his left eye completely gone, but debris from the rock had damaged his right eye as well. The pressure build up from the strain on his right eye caused even more problems. My father, in a desperate attempt to save what remained of his youngest son’s sight, even took him to physicians in Ireland. But to this day my brother cannot see out of his left eye and needs glasses for the right eye.
Ahmed never showed up again. He never told anyone what he did and just vanished. My father, for reasons which elude me to this day, never confronted Ahmed’s family and did not file...