To be the mediator (in the Mediation and Arbitration’s Department) is as if you were in the middle of a battle where strikes often are not intentional, or if you were a messenger for a letter that is screaming not to shot it.
On the other hand, you can feel as you are a drop of ink reflects the feelings of the parties. A person can see through his life, long or short, many images and can pass through different situations that memorized in his mind and generated millions of thoughts while some case passed through us as clouds.
Some situations can not be portrayed through simple pictures; hence I wrote to reflect any situation that astounded me through words.
An old lady held in her hands two exhausted kids of seven and eight years old. She was hasting and the two kids were stumbling. The old woman was screaming “Hurry! I wonder when God will liberate me from you!” I was astonished by both her words and act. Many thoughts rivaled in my mind, all of them conveying feelings of astonishment and wonder. One thought suddenly sprang up like a light, this lady might be their mother but her age made me put this thought aside. Maybe she is their grandmother, but I excluded this thought too leaning on the saying “Nothing is more precious than a grandchild”.
If they are her grandchildren, this would be a mere assumption or legends of the forefathers. Then I decided to go and ask her whether I can help, but I gave away this idea for fear that she might be waiting one of my colleagues. So I waited and after awhile one of my colleagues arrived and requested me to help her with the woman’s case.
And I said “Yes, off course”.
In my office, the old lady said “These children are my grandchildren. Their parents were divorced since three years and their father is unable to take care of them because of his financial situation. I requested their mother to take responsibility of her children but she refused claiming that she can’t support them because of her father’s bad income and lack of space in her family home. I want to give up their custody for the sake of an institution that takes care of them.”
For a second, I stopped listening to her, contradicting by this the communication skills of any successful mediator ,but I looked at their eyes, their beauty, how innocent they are! What a painful future they will have if the wishes of their grandmother come true. I wonder whether they are aware of what is going on. Maybe they think of a long journey to an amusement center or a recreational place for children.
How astonishing! A father wants to abandon his children for the economic situation and a mother wants to abandon them for the same reason. I can understand their problem and how people governed by poverty but I know that noting will help children broken heart to recover again after losing faith in their mother and father. Suddenly, you will find yourself in front of “crime” not ”case” and then you will face another question if it is just a crime who is the ” offender”!!
Father, Mother, Poverty, the Critical Situation in the Gaza Strip, etc… you still can’t tell!!
“Our children are our livers walking on the ground”, how can poverty be a means of ending the dream of normal and warm life!
Many reasons have led this old lady to put in danger children as young as flowers. I asked her if this is the only reason. She answered “Yes”. I asked her if this is the wish of the father. She replied “Yes”.
I took the name of the mother and her address and requested her to take the children and give me two days. She left thinking that she failed in her mission.
I wrote down all the details without neglecting any small detail. I did not consider the case as an ordinary family dispute but considered its humanitarian aspects which encouraged me to exert all my efforts to help these two children.when knoking the door of their mother family home, an old man opened the door and let me in.
It is not necessary to be a psychiatrist to notice his angry mood. After I listened to the story from his point of view, I tried to explain that these children are as young as flowers, why you refused sheltering them. As I expected, the old man replied angrily and loudly” do you want us to raise his children ” and he insisted on his view, strangely refused to take them or even see them ,so I asked him to let me talk with their mother.
I was shocked of her reply at first but then I realized that she owns nothing and she is trying to keep her tears away. I heard her scrams just by looking in her eyes so I decided to try more and more.
Then I got an idea; let’s give them a chance. I convinced them to have the children for two days per week and then I had long conversations with the father who was under the pressure of his old lady and life difficulties.
I will try to be strong for my children and I will insist to have them; my life without them means nothing, reply the father.
I was happy to see a smile in the children face when they saw their parents came to take them. This was the minimum solution to a family in such circumstances. Keeping children in their family warm and love is the ultimate goal to any mediator.