Disclaimer: This is a rant. Don’t judge me.
I am tired. I have been filming and reporting on IDPs in Karachi for three days now, and apart from feeling like my bones will melt into a pile of nothingness I am now descending into the depths of an intensely black depression. I always thought of myself as this journalist with a heart of steel – after all, if we got depressed over every story we did, we would probably all be in a padded cell by now. Not that some of us shouldn’t be there already, but still. I thought I had learned from my mistakes in 2005, when I internalised the pain of sifting through tapes and tapes of footage of dead bodies of children from the earthquake, of trying to post updates on where to donate goods, what the latest news was, 24/7.
But post-Swat, I am shattered. I cannot look into the eyes of six year old children and try to get them to tell me what they saw. Or see their blank expressions and wonder how they will ever forget what they’ve seen. I cannot look into the eyes of parents who tell me that “bachay kia, hum khud zehni mareez hochuke hain”. I cannot reconcile myself with the fact that political parties are using a war as an excuse for photo-ops. I cannot believe how TV channels are giving more face time to ministers and politicians visiting the IDPs’ camps as opposed to taking to task those responsible for helping the displaced.
Ad now that I have gotten this rant out of my system, I am still tired and still as depressed. Ghalib said it best perhaps: “Buss ke dushwaar hai har kaam ka asaan hona / Aadmi ko bhi muassar nahi insaan hona.”