Today, beaten by the Pandemic, as we stand on the cusp of hopelessness, we must resolve never to give in to it. Because beyond hopelessness is anarchy and destruction…
Helplessness is one of the worst feelings. But much worse than helplessness is hopelessness. So long as you know you have control over a situation, you call upon your inner resources to fight back, plan, strategise and hope for some control. You keep a grip over self, and on your life. Life is good when you feel strong and in charge.
However sometimes a point comes when you realise that a situation is beyond control and you are helpless. It is then, once you realise your inner resources are not enough to grapple with a problem, that you start looking towards others for help or guidance. These others could be members of your family, friends or acquaintances. It is for times like these that we invest in people and relationships. When the going gets rough, we expect those close to us to lend a supporting hand and bail us out.
But what happens when you find everyone else equally helpless? You are terrorized and look around wildly for a way out. So, you turn your gaze to the next safety net — systems put in place by societies and governments – systems you have paid for and taken for granted because of a government you have voted for and had faith in. And then to your horror you realise that the system either doesn’t care, or just isn’t strong enough to save you! The government is floundering — unprepared, reckless and uncaring.
This is where we stand today. Suffering. Pained. Shocked. Disbelieving. Dismayed. Angry. Helpless… Faced with unprecedented times, we are facing the bitter truth that everything we believed and invested in, everything and everyone we relied upon and trusted was but a pipedream, and we stand on our own — all by ourselves, alone, scared and grieving.
The unthinkable has happened – a virus has brought us all to our knees and left us gasping for breath. Every day you hear news of friends and acquaintances succumbing to corona as it creeps scarily closer. Despite the best intentions, we are unable to come to the help of those closest to us. When you suffer, loved ones offer succor by taking care, showing warmth and nursing you back to health. But today, the moment you are declared Covid positive, you are whisked into isolation, deprived of the comfort of human care or touch. Families are not allowed to see and console their loved ones as they suffer, to hear their last words, or even give them the kind of farewell they would have under normal circumstances. People are crying out helplessly for beds, oxygen, doctors and nurses, and many are dying on the road, or at the gates of hospitals. We have seen our systems give way and allow us to freefall without support.
But, even as our faith stands in tatters, we must not let our spirit follow the same path. We must remain strong and emerge stronger, as one. Let us not allow this feeling of helplessness to turn to hopelessness. We must keep the faith and ensure that we emerge from the present situation with our dignity and faith in humanity intact. Even in the midst of this darkness, you see embers of hope. Many people come forward to lend a helping hand to the suffering, distributing food packets or even volunteering at crematoriums without caring for their own wellbeing. Doctors, nurses, journalists, cleaners, delivery guys and many others have been all working tirelessly through the Pandemic. Gurudwaras are giving free meals to many as well as setting up oxygen camps, and several NGOs have been helping too.
And if faith in our systems has collapsed, let us at least emerge with the strength and understanding to build better systems and security nets which we can fall back on with confidence when the need arises in the future.
Today, beaten down by the Pandemic, as we stand on the cusp of hopelessness, we must resolve not give in to it. Because beyond hopelessness is anarchy and destruction. We may be beaten, but we are not destroyed yet. Let us fight back this virus, stay safe and strategise to overcome. All of us have been impacted, some worse than others. We shall all emerge from this together, stronger and better. Everything comes to an end – the good and the bad. This too shall pass…
Views expressed above are the author’s own.
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