Water’s Story

by | Apr 14, 2022 | BTB - Long Story | 0 comments

Uniting
I was 13 when I first saw the ocean. Before that I lived in-land where the only bodies of water were isolated lakes, twisting rivers or pools of stagnant ponds. I grew up believing those were the only kinds of naturally occurring sources of water: linked but isolated, forever travelling on their own path or stuck chained to a single place. And then one day I got on a plane, marvelled at clouds and endured turbulence, and landed in Karachi. My first visit to the beach, seeing the Arabian sea spreading out farther away, reminded me of our geography lessons. That all rivers, each supposedly a separated body of water, empty out into the same basin. They join the Indus and drain into the sea, further pouring into the Indian ocean to become part of a greater collection.

I was close to 20 when I realized that water drains in a reflection of society. We are individual rivers, amalgamating into a greater collective. No matter where we begin, no matter the paths we take, we will always end up in the same oceans. But we overlook those connections when we face diversity. We share our rivers and seas with our neighbors, we stare at the divisions between us while water flows causally through it all and meet in a dance as they mix.

Water has history, water has stories, water has seen both turmoil and calm. Yet, it is flawless in picking up and continuing on as in sync as before. Our history, our turmoil, our peace; they all stand as evidence of our lives lived in that same harmony, but we let the water lay lines in the sand so we can turn away and easily deny them. We try to forget but water remembers, and it makes us realize too. It falls as rain, is gathered in our homes, is the lifeblood of civilization itself and it believes with a distinct conviction in the good in us, the good in our humanity, because it has witnessed proof of it long ago.

If we learn this lesson from the ever present element, which has been immortalised even in our narratives through its valuable existence, then it would be impossible to see divisions, impossible to consider ‘otherness’ when bonds of unity wait to be renewed and generations of friendships lie just around the corner.

Writer: Hafsa Ahmed

Illustrated by: Ruchita

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