Her words foreign to me, but her desperation palpable.
The translator said the Yazidi women beg for US airstrikes, not in hopes of a rescue, but in hopes of death.
The woman pleaded, Kill me. I have no means to kill myself.
I am 34 years old. I've never heard a bomb explode. I've never experienced a kidnapping. I've never been beaten. I've never been raped.
But this woman, those terrors are her reality. Daily.
I am driving home, but I'm not breathing.
Like realizing you've been under water too long, I come up and gasp for breath, my heaves for air trying to recover what my heart had stopped.
The wave of apnea drowns me again as I listen to another woman recount the horrors she has suffered. She is a mother.
Breathe, Ali. You must breathe.
I admit, I don't understand the full spectrum of issues involving Iraq, Islam and ISIS.
But I do understand the heart of a woman, the heart of a mother, and as I turn down the road leading to my home, my chest tight, I hear my heartbeat crying out to these precious souls.
Sensation returns to my flesh, and so does the emotion.
I don't feel sick. I don't feel hopeless. I don't feel sad.
I only feel rage.
Like the kind of rage that will come out sideways if I am in earshot of a harmless cat call or benign innuendo. Some seemingly innocent goof blindsided by my reckless anger. I want so badly to shake someone and scream, just scream and scream and scream. There are no words, I just want to muscle and scream the evil out of this terror, these horrors that are leaving women and children begging for death.
The cowards, with blood on their hands and automatic weapons across their chests, and I am just so fiery mad.
It has to stop and I am so full of rage.
There's no one there but the screams come and I'm screaming at the sky and, "WHY GOD? WHY?"
Please, God, please.
Why can't it stop.
It's not even a question anymore, just a prayer. A plea. A desperate heart begging God to set the captives free.
And just as quick as the rage boiled my blood, the tears begin to flood my eyes. I sit paralyzed in my driveway, broken and sobbing because these women, these mothers . . . it could be me.
And there are no answers. Only hearts connected, and I don't want to stop praying for these women.
If only they knew.