DENVER -- Powerful images circulating the world only show a piece of what the people in Afghanistan are living through.
"Some of the images that are coming out of the airport, there is (sic) people hanging on to airplanes as it is trying to take off," said Samiya Azizi, who has family in Kabul.
Azizi has seen this story before. She fled Afghanistan with her family when she was only 8 years old, after her father was killed by the Taliban. She now lives in Denver.
As the reality of living in a Taliban-controlled state sets in for her family still in Kabul, the only option is to escape.
"It has been a little hard to even get in touch with them as days go by. It is heartbreaking hearing the stories that are coming out. Women running around not knowing what to do, not going to work, as the Taliban have taken over as we have seen the streets of Kabul be almost empty as they have made checkpoints all around it," said Azizi.
For now, the most pressing matter is to get out of the country safely.
As Azizi sees thousands of people attempting to find a way out, she is reminded of a story her mother told her before she left 20 years ago.
"When we were leaving home, I remember throwing a tantrum and saying 'I don’t want to go, I want to stay' and I remember my mom sort of holding my hand and making this shape and for those who don’t know, this is the exact shape of the Afghanistan map and she said home is going to be with you wherever you go," said Azizi.