Al3a2eela Alsa3eeda

Al3a2eela Alsa3eeda is the Arabic word for “The Happy Family”.
Al3a2eela Alsa3eeda, a phrase my parents (well mostly my father) use a lot. Whenever those words are uttered, a unpleasant feeling grows inside me. My heart begins to burn with anger and annoyance, and the feelings of anger slowly turn into feelings of nauseating disgust. That phrase is surely one of my most despised and detested phrases a person could ever use.
It all started while we were at a summer resort. My peaceful ambling by the turquoise waters of the Caribbean was interrupted by my father’s calls. I sighted. What have I done now? As I slowly walked toward my “family” who were swaying in the waters, I began preparing myself for a heated argument, or I wished it were. My father had just called me to make a “family circle” formed of holding hands while each member said (or most properly, was obliged to say) “Al3a2eela Alsa3eeda”. I was confused, this was a lot for me. Wasn’t it just three days ago that he ruined my whole summer? What in the heavens just happened to his mind? Had the sun or the seawater damaged his brains? I reluctantly joined the circle, my hand burned with the touch of their hands. I don’t remember how the three minutes passed away. I don’t remember my excuse to leave afterwards. I remember I surreptitiously ran toward my secret place with tears in my eyes. I just wanted to be alone, I wanted them to leave me alone and let me be. I remember the people looking at me cry. They were there to have fun, I was there having the worst time of my life.
My father keeps using that phrase. For him, it’s just a mere phrase meaning nothing but happiness. But for me, it is long days of pain, it is tightening a smile over the scars of suffering, it means the long fighting and arguing times with my parents, it is me begging them to let me be just like all the other teenagers, it is me bearing all my pain and annoyance. That phrase, “Al3a2eela Alsa3eeda”, is only appropriate when used by my only family in this cruel world, my best friend, for my parents have shown me bitterness over the love they think they are giving me. And every now and then, my dad lets that phrase out, killing me in the inside, while I’m bound to only mask my pain and suffering with a warmth-less smile.

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