pakistan-flag“Pakistan! Pakistan! Pakistan!..”, I hear some little voices screaming and singing some sort of anthem in their baby language. “Cute kids.”, I smile as I realise they are the grandchildren of our landlords. I close my eyes and the flashbacks start, I’m standing at a stall for all the 14th August stuff, pointing towards a small girly badge stuck on a pink butterfly. My dad buys that badge and a small flag for me and hands me the shopping bag. I go home and try to fall asleep, but all efforts go in vain and I end up painting my imaginations for the next day. I wonder how I’d look like wearing that badge. I think about what I’m gonna say when my friends will see that butterfly pinned on my scarf. And the next moment, my mom wakes me up for the new day since I’d fallen asleep. I dress up and go to school for the mega event of Independence Day Celebrations and get a Baalushahi at the end of the day and come home and somehow the day ends and I forget about the 14th August thing for the next 12 months.
For the next 14 years of my life, I take 14th August as just another day on the calendar. I don’t feel as enthusiastic and zealous about the day when Pakistan actually appeared on the World Map. I don’t worry about my preparations for the day. I don’t care about my small sized flags. I don’t know how to respond to text messages which flood into my inbox every year. I make scenarios and picture all the possibilities where I could finally be able to live in some foriegn country. In short, “Pakistan” stops to bother my concern.
But really, life doesn’t stay the same forever. The condition of Pakistan does alarm me sometimes and I am often left clueless when I worry about this piece of land. I don’t get where to start. The first thoughts that cross my mind, or every average citizen, after hearing the word “Pakistan” often include problems that this country is facing. And they are not just some problems, they are a whole lot to consider. There’s corruption, energy issues, awful government, and many more. I don’t really want to go into detail right now. The question is, how do one, at a small scale or we at a large scale, change the way this is going on and on. How do we get rid of these nasty things. How do we amend the mistakes we’ve made. How do we improve the international image of our country. The answer to this, in my opinion, is simple.
We’ve got to change the way we are, and then eventually we’ll be able to witness a bigger change. As the quote says, “Be the change you want to see”. We’ve to start from ourselves first. We should practise things by ourselves before pointing out someone else’s mistakes. Change comes from within, that’s what everyone needs to understand before its too late. Nothing lasts forever unless you try to keep it. So dear ones who are reading this, save what you’ve got before you don’t have it anymore.
I’d like to add this one last thing. Quid e Azam and the Flag of Pakistan and National Anthem are important stuff. They define our identity. Just don’t remember them once a year. It’s no use forgetting about things and remembering them when you need good selfies to upload as some stupid profile pictures for like 24 hours. There’s so much more to it. 14th August is not supposed to be the birthday bash of Pakistan. It has more meaning to it. Think about it.