Cancer! This disease still causes tremors to me. The name itself breaks my heart every time I come across it. It traumatizes my sheer existence and makes this world a dark and twisted place for me. I lost someone really close from it. The day I realized that it wasn’t that one person who was gone from my life but the emptiness that will always reside by my side in times of happiness and pain. The hollowness that couldn’t be filled, no matter how happy I get, no matter how amazing my life becomes or how blessed I feel, there is always a constant emptiness that doesn’t go anywhere. The kind that keeps on reminding me that I lost someone I can never replace. But when I see around, I notice that the calendar doesn’t stop changing dates; day is transformed into night and then night in day. Each day is passed and my routine doesn’t halt, still there are some questions left unanswered and one of which is to how let go of this pain? I think we all the answer but we deny because it is the hardest part yet the right way to live our lives. We fight. Not for a day or few hours but every single moment. We fight.
I don’t understand why our society doesn’t emphasis enough on this face that one should never give up. We are pushed to our limits or even beyond that to fit in with the social norms of the society, get good education, marry someone who is compatible and get settled only to earn for a living and leave this world one day. This is a vicious cycle that has always been same for a lot of us. But why aren’t we told to become a better person? Why aren’t we told that every day is not going to be a sunny one and it’s okay if it’s not, what matters is how we respond towards it. How we take things and how we fight when things don’t go well. Why aren’t we told that it’s okay to be a failure at times and its okay if we won’t be thinking about ourselves only? Why in this race of becoming a successful person, we have forgotten to become a good person. How many of us have actually thought about helping someone else in the past 24 hours? The ones who are less privileged and aren’t blessed like us. The ones who sleep with an empty stomach every night. The ones who can’t afford to clothe themselves in the winters or the ones who don’t have the facility to drink chilled water in summers. Why doesn’t it come across that we could have been at their place as well? What makes us so special that we aren’t? I think nothing.
Like cancer eats away a person internally, damages the organs in an irreparable way and results in causing a lot of physical and psychological changes in them. The white blood cells still don’t give up. The immune system does become slow but it still doesn’t stop until we are alive and against all odds our body still works, although with great difficulty, but it does. Poverty eats our society the same way. It not only affects the person or their family but the whole economic system as well. This is not a one day process to eradicate it or fix the effects it has caused in our society. But we should know that there is one way to tackle it and it’s to fight it. Every individual, through their maximum potential could take measures to do so. I know a lot of people or organizations are already playing their part in it. I could think of Seed Out as such a platform since it is not only providing micro finance to people who are job less or want to extend their businesses but it is also making sure to provide them with a better life and emphasizing on motivating them to keep on earning by providing them with incentives and emphasizing on educating their children for a better future. But a lot of us still need to jump and understand our responsibilities regarding it. Education is a very vital aspect of improving our conditions. It opens a lot of ways by letting us know the ongoing of the world. I am sure we all have brains but it gives us the ability to polish our thinking and makes it possible to see from a different perspective. The people who are unprivileged need it the most to stand on their own feet and choose a better life for themselves and their family. Charity begins at home and there is no way we can play blame game and put the entire burden on government. Start with baby steps. A small example could be that we could help our maid with her children getting education. We could get her husband to earn by finding him some job. Or to the least we could compensate them with financial help, other than her salary of course so that she could bear the expenses or debts, if she has any.
There are a lot of other organizations that are working for this cause on a huge scale and we can play our role by donating them. Be it in the form of clothes, toys, accessories, necessities or money; there will always be someone we can find in this regard. Apart from donation we can volunteer in such organizations. That will not only give us exposure but also make us more close to people and only then we can understand that they are not any different from us. Students like me could cause awareness among other students on campuses if we find someone that need immediate help or will be benefited by others. There is social media to raise our voices and make others understand that how they can be helpful. Someone’s happiness might be awaiting our little attention.
Just like the white blood cells which fight from every evil in our body, protect our organ and make sure that they function well we can also fight this cancer of poverty by playing our part in it. Be it small or something really big, it doesn’t matter but what does is that we don’t give up, no matter how tough the situation may seem. Nothing is impossible to a willing heart and if we can survive the big losses in life, we can fight this one too, which isn’t a loss yet but needs a serious attention to be resolved and its our duty as a Pakistani to fight till we can because we really can.
HANNIA MASOOD AWAN.