Over the past decade, I have often mused about the attack and my 16-year-old attacker, who journalists identified as Abdul Karim.
By harming a guest at a shura meeting with tribal elders, Abdul broke a centuries-old pact known as Pashtunwali, which demands that guests, even enemies, be fed, given water and, most important, protected. The Taliban must have put him under intense pressure to commit such an abomination, akin to shooting a gun in church. They could have kidnapped his family and threatened to kill them.
It took me a long time to forgive Abdul but I had to in order to begin healing.