When reaching the bottom of the trough, one can sometime resort to taking a bit of his/her time imagining what it would feel like once the ordeal finally passes. Growing up in an environment where a sense of security ceases to exist, and where forceful expulsions are a constant threat, a kind of optimistic daydreaming is needed even more. Lately, Twitter has been aflutter with the hashtag “tweet like it’s free,” in which Palestinians, as well as citizens from the rest of the world unleashed their imagination, picturing what a liberated Palestine would look like.
Through this hashtag, social media users expressed their hopes for the demise of the Israeli occupation and the return of life to Palestine, its people, and its sanctities. They also circulated old pictures of life in peaceful Palestine, and shared the designs they created, envisioning its streets, places, and the activities that would be implemented after its long awaited liberation. Some want to go fishing, some to the beach, and some just want to go back home. These littlest of things that we tend to overlook and take for granted, are things Palestinians have only ever dreamt of within their wildest imaginations.
Without the Israeli apartheid and it’s military occupation, kids would have a tranquil atmosphere, where they can sleep peacefully without having to cover their ears in fear of the loud bombs hovering above their head in the dead of night. The only thing flying through their skies, would be shooting stars and children’s kites. All are imaginary tweets we hope turn into a reality, soon enough to celebrate it. When Palestinians can visit the graves of their loved ones who sacrificed their lives fighting for this, and say, “We made it, your effort paid off.”
“Hundreds of planes arrive at Gaza International Airport with thousands of Palestinian refugees on board,” is a statement one wishes to see aired on international news channels. When buying train tickets to visit cities like Jerusalem and Ramleh, to have a lemonade drink and a nice stroll in its beautiful streets doesn’t seem like an insane idea. When the dream of praying inside Al Aqsa mosque throughout the holy days of Ramadan is legitimate and possible.
Hours after its launch, the hashtag turned into a live platform that gathered the hopes and dreams of Palestinians, for a state liberated from the brutalities of the Israeli occupation. Just picturing liberty itself when Palestinians can finally claim their simplest of rights back, imprints a huge eternal smile on our faces, and brings down a ray of light in a dark tunnel.