The shared trauma of Palestinian life
|Majed Abusalama on|
The most alarming messages to me and my siblings are those messages that come in the middle of the night.
My mother, Halima, is writing to us in our private family chat group that the Israeli bombardment of Gaza started again. She tells us our one-year-old niece is traumatized and shaking of fear. They start to comfort her or play with her to distract her, but the home is shaking and the windows might blow in anytime from the impact of the falling F16 bombs.
My parents and my brother continue to write throughout the day about how horrible last night was in Gaza. How the Israeli warplanes and drones are still above them; bombing areas every now and then. I just wake up to realize Gaza was attacked all night, and that warplanes and drones are still hovering.
There is much to fear about what is going to happen next after Israel’s assassination attempts on two leaders of the Islamic Jihad, one in Syria where Israel murdered his three children but could not assassinate him, and the other in Gaza where they murdered the man and his wife sadly. So far, five beautiful humans in Gaza were murdered. More than 30 were injured and the situation is still dangerous. The Palestinian resistance and the Israeli occupation army are clashing. Israel’s massive bombardment of missiles is destroying agricultural lands and homes while some local-made rockets are being fired at places close to Gaza in response to the Israeli warplanes.
Children are not able to sleep and families live in a constant state of alarm. During the day schools were closed; universities delayed their exams and demanded students not leave their homes. Our children and people are just hearing those warplanes and drones hovering above them, wondering, ‘will the next bomb fall on us?’ Is this a life?
How much longer can we endure this ongoing trauma, stress, and fear?
All Palestinians experience this even if we are exiled in refugees camps outside of colonized Palestine. We all carry this package of pain and trauma. It leaves us worrying about the next war crime Israeli colonialism will commit to further the injustice and oppression against our beloved people.
Every child, every woman, every man, every tree, and every flower is suffering everyday from the lack of everything human and normal in our Gaza.
We tell a story everyday to the world about being tired and angry at the injustice and oppression we experience in every detail in our life. Gaza is unlivable for human beings according to all human rights organizations and the UN. We realize this stress in every cell of our individual body and collective bodies as we witness how the world fails to respond to this injustice. Our daily calls to humanity and to any universal power to stop the brutal Israeli collective punishment and genocide in our lands go unanswered. We are helpless in front of the powerful Israeli military machine.
We want to live normally but it feels like we are born to be carry a wound that can not be treated through human modern science. We are born to be test creatures which are only allowed to experience extraordinary pain. Living outside Palestine and looking at the pain of my privileged friends leaves me wishing to experience normal human pain. I wish I could treat Gaza with healing power and yoga. The pain we live with is beyond explanation and endurance. Don’t you think we deserve the life that other people live? Don’t you think we deserve the life that Israeli people live? I only have one answer to all these difficult questions. Rights can be taken and we will struggle and fight everyone who prevents us from living as just, equal, and dignified a life as any human being anywhere on this planet.