Forgetting and carrying on is a double edged sword. There are times I know I need it like so many of you. But I fear it too – I don’t want to forget how these months and especially the last few weeks have made me feel. I have tried to find solace in everyday acts of living and sources of joy and gratitude but there have been days it got harder to bury myself in the mundane. I harbour a fear – a fear that we/I will forget.
There is such an influx of resources and personal narratives everywhere now. People are enraged and so many of us want to do something about it, anything at all, from where we stand. And yet, I fear we will forget.
Moving on and doing what we have to do is unavoidable of course. But there is a power in tragedy, loss, shame and rage that spurs a lot of us to instant reaction that only sometimes goes on to become a part of us. And time and instances in history have shown us that more often than not, we move on a tad too quickly. The learning does not register and especially not if we have been at the receiving end personally. We do sympathise, we are aware of what went wrong, and sometimes even have an idea of what could have been done better and yet, over time, we forget. The impact and trauma of a particularly difficult time fades away or stays as an unpleasant memory that surfaces once in a while only to disappear again.
Now that is indeed helpful if we are coping with loss but eventually need to march forward and make something of our lives. But this ability to forget or temporarily tuck away in the deep recesses of mind and move on, becomes dangerous when we let extremely detrimental practices and systems to carry on too and become evasive of our roles and how pro-active we need to be over time and not just reactive to calamity.
It is a great opportunity to educate ourselves now – there are a lot of resources and platforms coming to the fore and spreading their message. But we don’t need to be overwhelmed. Here is what am striving to do – to listen calmly, drawing parallels to my own experiences, identifying patterns and narrowing them down in ways that make sense to me for starters. We only need to make small changes – little changes to our actions and subsequently tweaks to our thought processes that have been comfortably etched in our minds. We each need to take one step forward and collectively, we’d have moved massively as a community. I have identified 3 things I want to do and act on. It somehow makes it more actionable, less overwhelming and makes me feel useful and proactive. Quite frankly, I could do with feeling a bit resourceful, right now. Alongside, I can continue to educate myself, tease out patterns and processes that are deeply ingrained. It is just making that start and sticking to it that will empower me to empower the community I am part of. I want to move beyond being reactive and stay consistently proactive, responsive and responsible.