On August 31, 1962 the Caribbean twin-isle of Trinbago gained INDEPENDENCE. It nearing another annual celebration of this led thoughts to this idea of independence as we carry-on in the Caribbean. As the child grows their personality shows forth and by the time of adulthood there are certain things that come to be associated with an adult. This type of association is also true for nations, and for Trinbago it is their Carnival. One of the most memorable Carnival creations from this isle, was the character T.A.N T.A.N who shared the stage with her Saga Boy
What really does it mean? How might one recognize this idea of being INDEPENDENT?
Interdependence- Trinbago like many of its CARICOM neighbours would have once been fully dependent on the ‘Mother Country,’ independence first and foremost signals a reduction on the previous level of dependence. Yet the one, the nation who truly appreciates independence appreciates that its ready twin is interdependence for no matter how self-sufficient a man or nation there is need of others. Since,
Numerology- Trinbago will soon be 54 years independent! Is that a long time or is it a short while? What does that mean for this isle? How many years have you been on this planet? What does it mean to you? For certain age is a number. But what that means is within the hands of the independent man, woman, country. So what meaning are you giving to your digits?
Decisions! Decisions! Decisions! The beauty of being dependent on another is that they get to decide for us, they get to take responsibility. If we sincerely embrace our independence though we understand that it is now in our hands to direct our course by our decisions. To operate differently by refusing to decide and allowing things to happen in our
lives by happenstance we are displaying pseudo-independence. But with independence we are,
Energy- Overall the peoples of the Caribbean have a special kind of energy or spirit, in terms of independence though energy refers to the literal need to manage our resources. This fact is all too familiar to the Caribbean. It is also a factor that sometimes is not given as much consideration on the individual level. Another aspect of energy is the will to keep on going for be sure that part of being independent is learning to face the ‘harsh realities’ of life and to keep going. Do hope we remember to,
Power- As we independently tackle life, we must choose each and every day, each and every time and with each and every experience, what our predominant attitude will be. A frustration of independence is that after making our decisions and managing our different
energies, we might be reminded in a not so pleasant way that the twin to independence, interdependence, is always with us. It might be helpful to bring to remembrance in these times that our attitude in the situation still remains our own.
Effective-Communication- As a babe much effort is made to try to understand what is happening. As an adult it is expected that you would do the work to communicate effectively. Being independent then must lead one to question, if communication is effective.
Negotiations- Who can truly rule, govern, and lead well without having some negotiation skills? In fact from the time children reach two or three years of age they show their negotiation skills? Thus, while being independent might be somewhat euphoric in some measure, individual or country ought not to become giddy-headed. There is a road then that many of us might consider visiting or revisiting from time to time.
Defend- All countries recognize the need to defend their borders even in today’s global village. Similarly, each of us do well to recognize the basic need for letting others know that there are limits, limits to which we mesh with the group and stand on our own, this also holds for different sectors within the country.
Embodiment- A nation creates one out of many; the many different races and ethnic groups with their diverse history come together to create a history of that nation. In a similar way, we are one self that houses many selves. If we experience ourselves as disjointed it might impact our wellbeing and if the nation is unable to connect the different groups its wellbeing will also be adversely impacted. Therefore tolerance and appreciation of different manifestations of self or of a nation is a must. Thus,
Newness- Many enjoy birthday celebrations just as many will join in the Independence celebrations. Yet this annual celebration is only meaningful if something was done within the previous 365 days to create newness, in that way as an individual as a nation we are
growing and developing through the years, and can therefore celebrate our achievements over the years.
Transformation takes time! For the individual for the nation then we are simply working on it.
Well, KarryOn Caribbean wishes one and all a continued Happy Independence. And HERE’S to Trinbago... Toward Appreciating NATIONHOOD Toward Accepting NEWNESS!
By: Kerriann Toby - CONTRIBUTOR