One Step Beyond – Afghanistan – People – Rohida
My name is Rohida. My father's name is Syed Padscha. I'm forty years old. I'm from Afghanistan and live in Bajawar Province, which is near the Pakistani border. I have seven children. Three of them are still young, and four are already grown up. My husband died three years ago. I'm a widow.
Almost one year ago, on November 20, my legs were shattered by a mine. It happened in Bajawar. There isn't a war going on there, but some people there are evil.
My house is close to the village. We have two rooms and a guest room. Here, the houses are quite far apart from one another. They are surrounded by fields. There is a garden in front of my house. It has peach trees, berry bushes, and other different kinds of fruit trees.
It was one o'clock in the afternoon. I was right in front of my house, digging out dead roots and gathering branches. Then I went through the gate into the garden in order to pray. It was one o'clock. Afterwards, I went out again through the large gate. Out there, in front of the gate, there's only desert and wilderness. Right in front of my gate is a pond, and beside the pond is a creek. The water is clean. There were branches lying everywhere – they had fallen from the trees. I gathered all the branches and carried them into my yard. I brought in five large roots and four bundles of branches. Then I closed the gate and piled the wood up behind it.
And that's where the mine was, it exploded.
I can only remember the gate. My garden gate. On the ground, in front of my feet, there was nothing remarkable. It looked just as it always does. But that's where the mine was. No one was there to help me. My husband was dead, and my children weren't at home. My brother wasn't there.
But my neighbors heard the explosion. They came right away and took me to the hospital for refugees in Peshawar. This is a charity hospital, and the doctors are Afghanis. I was conscious the entire time and wondered, "Who will tell my children? What will my children do?"