I love stories and everything that makes them good. Timelines, narratives, omens, twists and turns, tragedies, happy endings, cliff hangers, and even things occasionally being wrapped up with a neat little bow. And my life is the biggest story that I'm uncovering, processing (albeit with an unreliable narrator somewhere inside my head), and telling at the same time.
Everything in my life happens for a reason. Every single incident has meaning, every encounter has turned into something, every experience was necessary. I genuinely would not go back and change a single thing about my life. What I would do though, is time travel to the past, meet little Ankita and whisper secrets into her ears so that she can feel hope. So that she can fine-tune her spidey senses, pay more attention to people and surroundings, absorb information and observe her feelings, and every once in a while, let some people hear exactly what they need to so that they too learn to pause before acting.
I don't know if you're like me and if not, I don't know if you'll ever fully understand how frustrating it is for me to look back at the past three months and not find a single excuse to justify this crisis. Not just in my own personal life but in the world in general. I will never be able to conjure up explanations for why people had to lose their jobs; parents had to contribute to the economy while homeschooling and caring for their young children, often sharing workspaces with their partners; victims had to be locked up with their abusers; and the most obvious tragedy of these times - people had to lose lives.
I will never be able to look back at these past few months and think, oh yeah, it was necessary because people had to learn how to make banana bread; I had to be given the chance to enjoy cooking; we all had to be forced to be more present with our families; nature had to heal.
I simply can't.
Call it pessimism if you want, but there's absolutely no good reason why the elderly cannot hug their grandchildren right now and many people have had to mourn the loss of their loved ones alone. None.
And don't even get me started on governments refusing to hold their officials accountable for breaking the very rules they created for the rest of us, a personal idol falling off a pedestal I put her on when I was ten, and one of the most powerful countries in the world basically turning into a police state while its leader gaslights the public via TWITTER.
My therapist has talked to me about existential anxiety/crises. Many people whose mental health has been shaken up during this pandemic feel like they're unable to cope with the changing reality of the world they inhabit. If you're struggling too, I wanted to share these resources with you:
As different as our circumstances are, we're all in this together. And as hard as it can be sometimes, let's try to take this one day at a time and enjoy at least one little thing each day.