It’s almost too impossible to comprehend the level of depravity and evil some people are capable of, and practically on our own doorstep.
What does come out of these tragedies is the resolute power of the human spirit. Its always so heartening to see people go above and beyond to help others in situations such as these, where really we act without thought for occasions we could never have prepared for. The way humans act when under extreme pressure, or in abject danger is almost overwhelming in its beauty sometimes.
When these moments happen I wonder if I am a good person. I wonder what I would do if faced with someone in pain or in a situation where I had to act now or run. Of course I would like to think should a situation such as this arise I’d do everything and anything I could to help another person, but we never quite know do we? I wonder if I could be selfless and put the needs of others before my own. Its what I’ve been brought up to believe should be the case, despite years of adulthood being advised we should 'look after number one'.
Well looking after number one hasn’t gotten us very far thus far. Presidents' aside perhaps.
Not to say I don’t care for myself as best I can, when I can, because I do and it's important to do so. But the idea that we should put ourselves first at every available opportunity grates on me. It's a common attitude and one which serves to alienate.
There are so many people in my life I care for; I love. I can’t even bear thinking about how it would feel if one of them was taken from me suddenly and without warning. It is the definition of incomprehensible.
Therefore I think I know deep down the way I'd act if faced with sudden tragedy - with bravery. Its what I aspire to at least.
It's easy to write off our behaviour when we aren’t called upon to be ‘heroes’. We can shrug off the responsibility or guilt at feeling helpless as we perhaps are not in a physical position to help. 'I wasn't there, what can I do?' Etc. It’s easy to do/think such a thing. We all do it – make excuses to ourselves and others as to why we can’t help.
But we can help one another. Every day. In even the teeniest of ways.
We can simply treat one another with kindness and without judgment.
We can utilise patience where normally we would act with frustration.
We can complement one another where normally we may internalise jealousy.
We can help one another by listening and being a physical and comforting presence instead of making others feel pressured and uncomfortable.
We can do all those things with barely any effort at all because they are all within us.
We don’t have to save lives to make a difference to someone’s life.
(Unless of course you are currently performing a life-saving operation then please stop reading this and continue with your important work).
We can make someone feel great just by being kind to them. That fact alone is so simple yet so effective it genuinely reduces me to happy tears. So when things are painful and hard in any area of our lives, let’s try and reach out to one another with kindness and compassion; it won’t solve any of the worlds greater problems, but it might just make life a little happier for those of us still lucky enough to be around.
Love always, K ❤️