The long months of harsh lockdown have faded from view in Wuhan, the first city in the world devastated by the new coronavirus. As residents look to move on, they cite a Chinese saying that warns against "forgetting the pain after a scar heals.”

To many in this central Chinese city, the saying sums up a temptation to let go of the bad memories while reveling in the recovery. To families grieving in the shadows, it means the danger of hastily forgetting without a public reckoning for the lives needlessly lost.

A year ago when Wuhan shut down, it offered the world a forewarning about the dangers of the virus. Now it heralds a post-pandemic world where the relief at unmasked faces, joyous get-togethers and daily commutes conceals the emotional aftershocks.