My name is Rim al Saleh, I am 35, years old and mother of five.I am three years and five months away from Syria. I escaped through Turkey with my children. We escaped illegally and it was hard. We were afraid of the smugglers and the Turkish army not to catch us. We waited on the borders for a long time but nothing happened. When we finally escaped they could not accept us in the camp so we stayed with some people in a house for three days. After that we stayed with
some relatives in a tent for two months. And finally they gave us our own tent. It was good. After two years in Turkey I decided that I wanted another baby. So I got pregnant.
Even if life was difficult in the camp I decided to get pregnant because I saw many of my friends loosing their children which was really hard. The families that had more than three or four children even if they had lost one it was still very hard but less hard compare to those who had fewer. Therefore I decided to
get pregnant. It was hard in the tent. I had to take care and cook for all of my family and everything we needed was outside the tent. But I also saw many men die and this also made me want to have more kids.
Our journey from Turkey to Greece was very hard because I am afraid of the sea. I am afraid anything that is related to water. It was like watching a gangster movie. The smugglers put us in a van and told us to keep quiet. When we arrived (to the sea) they told us to blow the boat and they looked for the driver but they couldn't find him. They put us one on top of the other and I sat far away from my children, but I was holding my newborn baby. The boat was very small. The Turkish army wanted us to go back and the Greek army wanted us to go to them. I was really afraid. When we arrived on the Greek shores the army took us for registration. So now we thank God that we arrived. I got so afraid. An indescribable feeling.
After this experience, I can go now near the sea and not get afraid. I can’t describe the transition from being afraid of the sea to suddenly feeling nothing.