Monday, January 1, 2024

2023 was exceptionally triggering for me

Artwork by Tarek Chemaly from the series "Visit Palestines"

In case you are not aware, I am literally a war child. I was born 6 months before the beginning of the 1975-90 was in Lebanon. Growing up, I never knew anything that was not war. Mind you, one of the things people do not understand, is that your parents were experiencing war live with you - nothing prepared them for this. So basically, I also came from a family that was suffering from war. Sure these are things you understand as you grow older and you have no idea what they mean as they happen on day-to-day basis. I remember that my parents had to have Tranxene 5(mg) even before bread. And no, I am not digressing. 
The problem is that what happened in Palestine in 2023 was a major trigger for me. All the images which were coming from social media - and even though I just follow a few people on Instagram and have no Tiktok, the people I do follow are as opinionated as I am. Naturally, considering I read and analyze all day long, I kept seeing a flood of news about the region.
If you still cannot put two and two together, let me make it easier for you - all the war trauma went back to the surface as I saw and watched what was happening there. All those shelter days, and bombardment days, and explosions, and newsflashes, and everything else. All came back in a condensed package through my mind. Sure, I am tough, always have been (even if there were bouts of depression at times), but seeing all this made the past more visible, more naked, more urgent.
And believe you me, trauma does not leave you. It may hide, but it never leaves.
So whereas anyone who knows me expected me to be more vocal about what happened in Palestine, the issue was that I was dealing with the war backlog - in addition to the other problems and things that 2023 (which was not kind to many many people!) has presented me with.
So voila, there was just too much on my (mental) plate, all while knowing where I stood.