Growing up, vacation was always my favorite part of the year. It was the one time of the year that I did not feel very anxious or worried. I was able to focus on things like when we would go to get ice cream or if I could stay at the beach just a little longer before going back to the house for lunch. I still remember falling asleep with the window cracked so I could hear the distant crashing of the waves. Every year I would count down the weeks and days until we would pack up and drive the seven hours to the beach house. The beach was magical. The sand somehow absorbed my cares and the water soothed my growing pains. As I got older, I began to realize that the beach did not soothe all my pains. I realized that the beach did not have the magical powers that I once believed in. Suddenly, the beach became the place where I worried about if my sunburn would lead to skin cancer or if the waves would crash over me and I would drown.


Since I was raped, I have felt disillusioned with life. I have watched the calendar and the clocks, wishing to believe in magic again. Wishing to believe that every second that goes by would scoop out a little of the hurt and carry it away into the past. I want to believe in magic like I did at the beach as a child. People often say that healing takes time but they do not realize that while time is linear, healing is not. Some days, I am doing great and then other days I loop a few steps back. It is hard to be stuck in this winding road when the rest of the world is constantly marching on. At night, I think of the waves at the beach and the sand, desperate to believe once more. Time is not what I need to reach healing. I need safe paces and support. I need for others to not expect me to be suddenly okay and alright again. I used to say that I needed time to be more okay or more comfortable but then I realized that in asking for time, I was given space. Friends stopped calling, people stopped checking in. It is as if all the responsibility fell on time to help me. And time let me down.

As I read the newspapers and watched the news this week, I felt strong parallels with the situation in my life and that of international events. As I watched people fleeing for their lives out of terror, I remember the terror I felt. As I saw the faces of those mourning, I remembered my sadness. As I watched world leaders march, I remembered how I too need support. It opened my eyes to see that while the rest of the world expects people as a group to move on with time, this is not always the case. Israel and Jews have been through so much lately and we cannot trust time to heal all wounds. We must play active roles in bringing healing and peace.We have a responsibility to care for those who need the extra support. We cannot wait on time to bring about healing. This week someone remarked that the conflicts in Israel this past year happened a while ago and enough time has passed that we should be able to look at the situation more objectively. It angered me. It angers me that the rest of the world expects Jews to just move on because they have. We are a community of individuals who each need to process and heal. As the French community and the Jewish French community start to heal this week, I will remember them. I will not trust time to heal all, I will look for ways to be actively engaged. 

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