Towards the end of college, I became very good friends with a girl. For privacy, I’ll call her “Ari.”
We spent a lot of time together and soon became inseparable.
She was there for me as I called my engagement off to my ex of 7 years…
…And she was there for me as I fell in love again.
We went on many adventures together and travelled as often as we could.
During Ramadan, however, we paused our travels to focus on prayer since it is the holiest month for Muslims.
I remember reading Quran one day, and I was alone in my room.
All of a sudden, I heard Ari’s voice.
I looked around, but no one was there.
It was likes someone was playing with a volume button.
Her voice began to go in and out…
Before I could process what was happening, I heard a man’s voice say clearly, “Do not talk to her anymore.”
Then, the voice disappeared, and all I could hear was the sound of my heart pounding.
I tried to ignore what had happened, but every time I saw Ari after that incident, I felt anxious.
And every time I saw her, I’d have nightmares of large snakes.
They were everywhere in my dreams.
I was constantly fighting the snakes away in my dreams, but it was futile.
There were too many.
The only way I could get the nightmares to stop was to distance myself from her.
I still remember how hurt and confused she was, since we’d been so close, and I didn’t know how to explain why I was pulling away….
But I trust that voice was watching out for me.
The nightmares ceased once our interactions did, and we haven’t spoken much since.