True story: I almost got kidnapped | Imane ElBacha

This is the story of the time I almost got kidnapped.
On a windy Sunday morning, I had to leave my secure home, for a reason that I truly don’t remember. As every typical weekend morning, the streets of my neighborhood didn’t give a sign of life, the emptiness and the silence of this path were pushing a heavy weight into my chest, and my stomach was shrinking leaving an acid aftertaste all over my mouth. My electric thoughts were like grey clouds in a winter sky, a terrified voice kept saying inside my head “ you’re an easy prey right here! Any stranger can be a danger! And the last thing you can trust is the mercy of a stranger!”

I shook my head to chase those dark thoughts; I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. When my eyes finally met the light, I discerned a black car that was approaching from the other end of the road with a speed that didn’t give me enough time to save myself, not even enough to figure out the chaos in my thoughts. My heart was a charged gun in my chest, every beat felt like a bullet. I was breathing heavily, even the air that penetrated my lungs felt like fire burning me into ashes.

The car stopped with a sharp brake right in front of me, the front door was opened abruptly and a tall well-built man appeared. I had few seconds to save myself but I couldn’t as if I had lost control over my body. The man run to me, squeezed my shoulders with his large hands, he said words that I couldn’t understand nor hear. When I finally got back the use of my senses I realized that my “kidnapper” was out of breath but I couldn’t tell if the moist drops on his cheeks were sweat or tears, then I finally heard what he was saying: “Please I need help! Where is the closest hospital?”

At that moment I realized that my anxiety was rootless, and I wasn’t by any means being kidnapped but there was a life that I had to save.
When I got back home that day, guilt was hunting me. The little trust that I have for the ones I don’t know made me forget how human they were, and how similar we are in our strength and vulnerability. The fear that the lack of trust built inside me blurred my vision and made every new acquaintance in a way or another an endangerment to myself. After all, why don’t we trust each other?

Later that day, as I was diving into the depth of this question I realized that we see every sin in the other ones, they are the liars, they are the thieves and they are the criminals. We end up perceiving ourselves as the innocent vulnerable victims of the other ones, when actually we are not. The majority of them live simple lives, work hard to support their families, worry about the bills, and wonder if their children will be home safe. We share the same fear from each other, an irrational anxiety that darkens the image of the others when it is truly quite comparable to our reflection. Trust is the key to release the tension built of the absurd fear of the unknown. So trust me a stranger doesn’t mean danger!