My Humble Ode To Manchester 22 May 2017

My Humble Ode To Manchester 22 May 2017

My Humble Ode To Manchester 22 May 2017

We tend to take that closest to us for granted. It can be people, it can be our culture, or it can even be locations. One of the places that has become an adoptive home for me is Manchester. It is where I choose to spend most of my time. It is where my husband works. It is where I work. It is where I feel a part of the community and a city where I am always in search of discovery. It is also a city that I don’t write enough about because it has become a city that just like that trusted friend, one inadvertently takes for granted.

A city so vibrant and full of life that the tragedy that has come to our doorstep cannot overshadow that entirely. It’s been a little over 24 hours since I woke up to the news of what happened, and in a feeble attempt to reconcile my thoughts around this disastrous occasion I choose to do what I think I do best, write.

My Humble Ode To Manchester 22 May 2017

In situations like this one doesn’t really know what to say. There is nothing one can say to others and certainly nothing one can say to quiet the internal dialogue. There are so many feelings of injustice, rage, and predominantly hurt that can all swirl within us changing course just like the wind. There are many questions one has and no one to answer them. There is a sense of vulnerability that overwhelms the senses and clouds all logic. One tries to reassure oneself of what the minuscule odds are of this happening to us, and as well meaning as that may be it doesn’t reassure at all.

The reality is this happened at our doorstep. It happened where we live, where we play, where we do business, and where we attempt to go on with our lives just like any other member of society does. It happened to our people. It happened to parents who allowed their teenage children to experience their first concert. It happened to the children who are curiously exploring the world around them and embracing the simple joy that is music. It happened to innocent people who were living their reality.

Why?

There is no answer to such a convoluted question. Not one that can help us wrap our brain around something that has touched us in such a direct way. There is no answer that will suffice. No answer that can give anyone any comfort or any feeling of protection and safety. There is nothing one can say, and nothing one can do to answer this question.

What I do know is that there are many people who are responsible. Those who choose to use their apparent power to put money first and humanity much further down the line, if it even has a place at all. These events happen in this country, on this continent, and whether people want to open their eyes about the reality of it or not, these events also happen to innocent people in the countries that one chooses to turn a blind eye to.

My Humble Ode To Manchester 22 May 2017

What now?

Now we shy away from public transport. Now we cross the street when we see somebody that “looks suspicious” solely because of their attire or the colour of their skin. Now we become racist. Now we condemn those who haven’t been in this country for generations. Is that what we do?

NO. It is not.

Now we just pick up the pieces and attempt to carry on. Now we put our humanity to the test. Now we love those around us. Now we become compassionate to our neighbours and friends who have been lumped in with the rotten people that they don’t personally know. Now we embrace those around us and those that need our help. There are many victims when an incident like this takes place, not just the obvious.

My Humble Ode To Manchester 22 May 2017

If you’re the praying kind, you pray. If you’re the charitable kind, you do your bit for charity. Whatever you feel your strengths are you use them as if they were your secret super power that can no longer be hidden from the world.

It takes time to figure things out. It takes time to come to terms with loss. It takes time to discover what our role is and what we can bring to the table.

This is not my country. Not by birth, but this is my country by choice. I am an anglophile through and through and the love I feel for this land is immense. I remember September 11, and even though I was thousands of miles away in my sleepy Texas town, I remember the feeling. It is one I hoped never to feel again.

This time I felt it in a much deeper way. I suppose it may be because I am older, and dare I say wiser. It may be the proximity. I don’t know why, but this has shaken me and I am still suffering from the aftershocks. Those that I know will dissipate and leave only the damage and confusion behind. Not only for myself, of course not, but for so many of those directly and indirectly affected.

The last I will say is this, I will not vilify an entire community for the acts of one person. I refuse to be a pawn in the game. I choose humanity and love above all else. Though that doesn’t mean that I am naive. I am aware of the realities of life, but I choose not to succumb to terror. I choose to love, and above all, I choose to live.


My heart goes out to those directly affected by this cowardly attack – by the loss of a loved one, injuries, disappearances, and so on. My most sincere condolences and prayers are with you. xx

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  • Gareth Torrance

    Honestly, I don’t know how to comment on this. It is a really heartfelt post for a truly tragic and utterly horrible event.

  • Nayna Kanabar

    What happened was tragic and its sad that we live in a world where there is so much hatred. My thoughts and prayers go with all the families that lost loved ones. Sadly there are no words to ease their pain.

  • I still can’t believe what has happened. I don’t think Manchester will ever truly recover from this

  • I am so sad for the citizens of Manchester and I hope that you are ok. It is a horrible tragedy and in times of horror we must unite to show the enemies that they cannot win x

  • Mummy Times Two

    It really is unbelievable, I’m not sure it has really sunk in yet. Like you, I hope that love not hatred will win in the end.

  • I can’t get my head around it at all, my Dad communited to Manchester daily for work for many years, it is amazing how the community has come together.

  • Melanie Williams

    Such a tradgic event, lifes lost and a city rocked by all this. Such a shame and very sad 🙁 x

  • Erin Ek Rush

    What a well written post. It is such a horrible thing to happen and the one glimmer of light has been the acts of humanity and kindness that have arisen from the tragedy.

  • Deborah Nicholas

    Great post and its all just so heartbreaking isnt it – makes me worry for the future generations 🙁

  • Melanie Edjourian

    Such an awful thing to happen and to get your head around. The whole country was shocked at how children were purposely targeted.

  • Such an awful thing to happen, its just terrible. My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone

  • Some sick people out there, such an awful thing to happen! But so lovely to see everyone come together after it but it’s sickening that there’s people out there who believe that’s the right thing to do

  • I’ve been so proud of Manchester this week – Proud to be a Northerner. You have written a lovely tribute to a great city and its people x

  • its been a shock to everyone ive felt scared to even leave the house but ive had to for the sake of my children to not fear them

  • It is something that I am still trying to wrap my mind around because the innocent lives lost all for nothing is making my heart ache. I can’t even begin to imagine what the families and people of Manchester are going through

  • Jenni Grainger

    It is just awful what happened, there are no words for it and I hate that it nearly stopped me from going away this weekend with my son. I agree that we need to carry on and not let ourselves be trapped with fear