This has been a weird week. I feel like I have irreversibly changed following the news. The graphic images we have been subjected to this week of that wee boy deepy moved me. Those images, I can honestly say, I will never forget. They are burned into my conscience.
I cried. I cried when I saw the news reports and then again just lying in bed at night.
I mean, I see news reports every day showcasing the worst of humanity but this one really arrowed me like nothing else. The fact is, when I saw those images, I saw my own daughter. Or at least, I recognised that - but for having the good fortune of being born in another part of the world - we are lucky. I don't know if that's the right word to use but I can't think of anything else. When I looked at Grace running round our living room like a crazy person; a big smile on her face, I was simultaneously feeling joy and guilt.
Why should we be able to laugh and enjoy these experiences when other parents are busy drowning at sea along with their toddlers?
It's a question I have really been struggling to comprehend this week. I don't think I'll ever find a suitable answer and to be honest, I'm at the point where shutting my eyes and trying to de-sensitise myself seems like a better option. But I won't.
Facebook announced this week that it had over one BILLION users in a single day. Could you imagine if even a fraction of that number lent its collective voice? I read as many people having a bitch about Google's new logo and it just seemed so...ludicrous!
If you are friends with me on Facebook, you will have seen my call to parents to hug your child just a wee bit tighter from now on. I'm sure no parent needs telling. It was more of a call to action to myself to appreciate basic things in life more than I do at present.
I have been reading Alain de Botton's The Consolation of Philosophy. The second chapter discusses Epicurus' take on living, which was fairly simple but at the same time seems stupidly difficult to achieve. His three tenets of leading a satifying life are: friendship (or companionship), freedom and the ability to think with reason. I'm not going to go into a book study here but suffice to say, I think I can do better on all three fronts. One thing the book has so far helped me with, this week especially, is in prompting me to question the happenins of the world. Unfortunately, my philosophical brain is not yet developed enough to conjure rationale from the needless death of human beings.
That's about it. I hope if you read this post I haven't brought you down. I just ask folks to think harder in an age of mindless social media comments and 24/7 live news coverage.
Do your bit
Lend your support too. I donate to the following charities each month. I donate a fiver to each, which works out as only £20. It's not a lot but it's all I can personally afford at the moment. Try and give a wee bit if you can.