Aminah’s stomach rumbled. She stopped walking and placed her right hand on her belly. The cells in her stomach contracted and like tiny soldiers, began fighting each other with acid that burned everything it touched, reaching to her throat and her mouth. Her body jerked, yet she refused to open her mouth and release the combatants. They multiplied filling her cheeks. She placed her hand on her mouth to prevent the inevitable. She felt weak. She fell to her knees. The soldiers slashed her mouth open. They choked her. She moaned with pain as they exited and victoriously invaded the stairs.

She stared at the mosaic of colors on the floor. Half-digested brown crumbs and green peas lay boldly naked on the stairs like nude artists waiting to be drawn. Orange lentil seeds were timidly covered by buttery chyme like a white sheet covering amateur naked artists. She had unexpectedly created an innovative modern stair painting.

She got up, and sniffed the stench that filled her nostrils. It was a reminder that after pain comes relief. In fact, the joys of peace after war are so much greater than just peace after peace. A feeling of utter tranquility filled her body like oxygen during a yoga breathing exercise. She wondered why she was adamant about keeping the toxins inside her body in the same manner she often stopped a sneeze in progress, forgetting the feeling after the magical ah-choo?

From that day on, vomit became a reminder to release and let go, and to never again be the prison guard, no matter whom the prisoners may be.

 

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