It is the children who make me cry.

It is the children who make me cry. Their sweet innocent faces tucked into a mother’s shoulder, their tiny hands in pink and brown and green mittens holding on to stuffed bears and bunnies, toy trucks, books and backpacks stuffed with the few worldly possessions they can carry.

It is the children who make me cry and the scenes of once tidy bedrooms torn apart by missiles invading, blowing out windows and scattering belongings, shredded by the blast, to kingdom come, that make me cry more.

It is the children who make me cry and the scenes of destruction and the photos of soldiers carrying an older woman across a bombed-out bridge as groups of mothers and children and young boys and older men pick their way across, to safety? To an unknown future?

It is the unknown future that makes me stop and say a prayer and light a candle and promise to not speak of war, to not hold enmity in my heart, to not let anger hold me trapped in believing all of this is about all of ‘them’, the ones who invaded, the ones who fire missiles and lob grenades and drive tanks along residential streets firing into homes where once a child played with her favourite pink bunny while her parents sat tucked together on the couch in front of a TV watching SHUM perform at the Eurovision song contest and cheering and hooting for their beloved Ukraine to win.

It is the ‘us and them’ that makes me feel hopeless. That makes me want to scream, “There is no us and them!” What we do to one we do to another. We are one world. One planet and what we do to them we are doing to one another. And in the tearing apart of their lives we are tearing our world apart.

It is the children who make me cry.

The child and mother have navigated the broken beams and busted concrete of the bridge now. They have boarded a train to somewhere west away from the fighting, the fear, the terror, leaving behind the place they called home, the flowered curtains the mother made and hung with care on the windows of the bedroom where the little girl slept beneath a comforter covered in giant sunflowers, the comforter her mother made to match the curtains that now lay shredded in the glassless window of the roofless house on the street where they once lived.

They are travelling west, leaving behind the life they knew, leaving behind the husband and father they love who must stay to fight this force of destruction that has rolled in carrying with it death and destruction.

They are travelling west.

It is the child who makes me cry, her face tucked into her mother’s shoulder, blue eyes wide, a little pink bunny grasped tightly in one hand as she looks out from the safety of her mother’s arms at a world she does not understand.

It is the wondering of how she will ever make sense of all of this that makes me weep.

16 thoughts on “It is the children who make me cry.

  1. My heart aches for all of these innocent and beautiful people in the Ukraine. No one should have to endure what they are going through and and now without heat, food and water…..and the men being separated from their families. I pray daily for this to end – so sad and hard to comprehend.🙏🏼

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Val. I was looking at the numbers of refugees this morning – over 2 million and my heart ached fierce. Listening to their stories, seeing the videos. I caught myself slipping from grief into despair. Grief is part of the process of building strength and resilience. Despair is the path to helplessness. I struggle to stay off that path as the sheer enormity of it all overwhelms me. And then, I remember, I am not powerful enough to stop this war. I am powerful enough to shine a light on our humanity. I am powerful enough to be Love. Always.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I haven’t been able to write anything. My actions seem so trival. I think being older, being a grandmother makes watching this horrid war more painful. What kind of world are we leaving our chidlren and grands?

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is what I keep coming up against Lisa — that feeling of whatever I say it will be so trivial… And then I remember, that if I say something and you say something and others say something, we are not trivial. We are ripples of change — enough ripples we will have the power to create a tsunami of hope, waves of possibility, and an ocean of love.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It is the children …
    It is their innocence …
    It is the loss of their innocence…
    It is the loss of a generation that will suffer, silently in places that are not their homes …
    It is the adults that despair for they understand, they know, they fear …
    Yet it is the children that break our hearts.
    It is the children whose resilience is untapped …
    It is the children who give hope to those who fight …
    It is the children whose future the world is placing its faith in …
    It is the children for whom we shed tears …
    Let they be tears of hope … 🕊🕊

    Liked by 1 person

  4. “It is the ‘us and them’ that makes me feel hopeless…” – I am with you in everything you say along with this.
    And I sit here in silence, appreciating everything else you said, and described with such deep feeling.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Being a “helper” I want to help. But how …seems like there is little that we can actually do to turn the tide or support those fleeing these callous attack on a country that he covets. I saw the picture of the mother, her two children and a family friend dead on a street and my heart was so heavy. It’s so hard to fathom that mankind is once again doing this to mankind. And as Ukraine is the breadbasket of Europe even more children around nations will go hungry – the already poor and marginalized. What was my word of the year – HOPE? Where is it? Bernie


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