On the 10th of October, I see the usual memes about “She’s a 10” and “He’s a 10” because it’s 10/10. And perhaps here’s the best part about memes. We have no idea what the person sharing a funny meme is actually going through. Are they sharing this when there is a happy family lighting a diya on the cusp of Diwali, or someone sharing it even as their house is on fire? For memes don’t come with a trauma stamp from the creator, or by the one who shared them with you.
‘We have no idea what the person sharing a funny meme is actually going through… Are they sharing this even as their house is on fire?’
So what is resilience? Is it sharing a funny meme the way it was meant to without adding your own sad boi feels to it? For that would corrupt the message with your sadness? Is it filing that tax return and sending that invoice even when you don’t know if a loved one will return from the clutches of the tax man who sits above us all? Is it continuing with your self-care routine and yoga workouts even as your tears stain the yoga mat? Is it picking yourself up from the floor in three seconds after a break-down because you now pride yourself on crunching the recovery time to under a moment?
As I type this article I am listening to the soundtrack of the anime Death Note. A heart-rending or soul crushing thriller/tragedy depending on how resilient you are, perhaps. For in this anime (Mild spoilers warning) a malevolent individual gets hold of a book where he can kill somebody by merely writing their name in it. Who could possibly even consider standing up to much less defeating such an entity? And many including great world powers do surrender meekly. But a tiny bunch of extremely mortal ordinary cops choose to stand up. In a heart-rending scene that will always stay with me, the commissioner’s backup arrives in the form of completely ordinary brave cops who stand up to the invisible dispenser of death itself by merely covering their faces from it.
‘Death Note’ — a heart-rending or soul crushing thriller/tragedy depending on how resilient you areNetflix
In real life, or ‘irl’ as GenZ would call it, resilience does not always require you to face the Death Note merchant. But many situations can often feel that way. Some have the fortune of being sheltered from the difficult choices at an early age. Some are fortunate to have the resilience to make the difficult choices at an early age when no one else is able or willing to. On World Mental Health Day, I am sure we saw a lot of memes on anxiety, depression, stress, etc and the usual platitudes about how it’s good we are finally having these discussions. But what is important to remember is that discussions are not a substitute for work. For resilience is about how to keep going even in the face of insurmountable odds. It is not about using World Mental Health Day as an excuse to run away from work and sharing mental health memes as a substitute.
Because the title of “He’s a 10” or “She’s a 10” is often followed by a “but umm” In the meme format. And you must surmount each and every one of them, for only then can you look at yourself in the mirror and say with confidence “You’re a 10”.
The author is a Marwari investment banker turned corporate comedian. The views expressed in this article are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of the website.