Yesterday, at the clinic of those coerced to stay healthy.
The nurse, in a loud voice:
Just a moment! This mother comes first, she's been calling since two weeks ago for a vaccine.
Nurse only wants to see you.
(3 years old boy) Just this?
(touches the small arm gently, fast, with the tip of her fingernail) Just a tiny sting, and you'll stay healthy!
(in tears, howls) NO!!!
But you're a hero, you're a hero, right?
(cuts short his weeping. Stands in silence, eyes wide open. They enter a side door, come out of it 2 minutes later. The child is wailing, dazed).
You're a hero, a real hero you are, Right?
(running to the other end of the large reception room), Wait, do not cry, just a moment! Don't cry, don't cry! (still running returns with a large, golden box, opens it) I have Someeething for you! Here, see, Don't cry, have one, put it in your mouth, Don't cry!
The child, his mouth stuffed, is sobbing softly. He was brought to this world unasked, a big bird has dropped him like a package on the steps of a house he was never asked to choose. His face is a picture of helplessness and disappointment with The Adult World, your heart goes out to him, to hug and caress.
Do not cry, you're a hero. Right?
I bit my lips, turn my head aside so as not to see the needle, and say to the quite large nurse seated across from me, busily filling the syringe with my precious blood:
"Now you understand why people get fat?"
"They eat to avoid crying."
"Aha," she says with a sad smile.
Back home I listen to the radio, read the papers, surf the net and the blogosphere:
"We have empathy.
"Our heart goes out to you, dear settlers. A large bird has brought you to the occupied territories, dropped you as if you were a package, not asking for your agreement - and now they suddenly want to pass you on to a foster family, lying to you that this one is not your biological one.
"Poor things. Real poor things.
"Do not cry. You're Heroes, You're real Heroes, aren't you?