She woke up with a start. Beads of perspiration dotted her forehead. Clutching the covers she glanced around the room, but everything was calm and quiet. She closed her eyes and tried to sleep but in an instant the many occurrences of eve teasing, the purposeful brush against her ill-formed breasts, the quick pull at her skirt, the quick rub against her thigh, the sickening glances, the attempts of molestation, filled her head.
“Why am I dreaming it?” It was a nightmare actually, she corrected herself. A nightmare she had lived while growing up. Travelling by a public transport, walking a dim lit street, reaching school, college on her own over the years had given way to such instances. She was deeply hurt by each such instance, but the shamefulness or the helplessness that arose from it was frustrating. She had been angry with herself. Every time she had coaxed herself that there was nothing to be ashamed of. She hadn’t done anything wrong, but the feeling wouldn’t go. Even today she couldn’t talk to anyone openly about the incidents. As time passed, she learnt a few hacks that kept such perverts at bay, however, she never really got over the hurt or pity that she felt for herself and she was might upset about it. The nightmare, once again had proved it! She was still stuck in that time warp and even thinking about it brought tears of helplessness to her eyes.
As she got back in her bed, there was a soft coo from the other side and she saw her 8 months old daughter smiling back at her. Her heart was in her mouth, just looking at the innocent face.
She held her daughter close to her and realised, it wasn’t just a nightmare, it was a warning. She had to prepare her daughter to face a world that wasn’t just or protected. But she promised herself one thing, “I will not restrict my daughter’s dreams to avoid such incidents in her life. I will equip her with better skills and will never let her feel inferior to anyone.Never will my daughter pity herself.” She knew it was this resolution that will help her get over her own helplessness.
This story was created in response to the story prompt from DailyPost.