Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Pretty Much Absent

Hi everybody, it's me again.. I know you haven't heard much of me these past weeks and months; I used to write a post a day pretty much for months last year, which I had to give up due to heading straight for total exhaustion trying to do it all and ever since I have been trying to getting back to some sort of a routine. There are many ideas flowing around in my head, which are forming to very coherent constructs at the oddest times of the day (e.g. while laying awake for a few minutes after nursing Violet at 3 in the morning or while walking downtown during my lunch break). For some reason, I seem to be creative when I am least able to write, and at night, during those couple of hours when the girls are in bed (and sometimes even Richard), I sit and seem not to be able to form a coherent, sensible thought. And to be honest, I'd rather NOT write than writing trash, out of respect to you, my readers, and a little bit out of respect to myself.

Probably this little blockage in my head that keeps me from expressing myself gives me some time to collect myself, digest some pretty heavy loads I've been facing (partly ignoring them for too long) and which will partly find their way into some future posts. Richard and I have been using the time to spend some evening quality time together, enjoying old favorites and discovering new gems. But still, I've been doing a lot of thinking, general and more particular. A couple of weeks ago I met my best friend for brunch and she brought me a little calendar with a collection of mostly African proverbs and sayings, which have also inspired me and directed me in a direction I feel is helping me getting over some things I will never be able to change and grow by acknowledging them.

In order to not be caught off guard any more, I decided to carry a notebook with me. I dug out a little black note pad Richard bought me as a journal a long time ago, I think when I was pregnant with Lily and wanted to write down some of my weird pregnant thoughts (guess what, of course I was way too busy to do so). I hope that soon I will be able to return with more regular posts, so keep your eyes open!

Monday, May 2, 2011

If You Can't Say Anything Good...

Today, going through my Facebook page, the only thing that came to my mind was a German proverb, saying "If you can't say anything good about the dead, don't say anything at all" (it is my current Facebook status; in German, since the hubby wanted to avoid extensive FB wars almost sure to ensue).

Of course, all this refers to the death of a person hated and hunted as few in the last years. But seriously, public parties to celebrate a man's death?? Barack Obama calling it "good news", David Cameron said he was "happy", and our very own Secretary of State, Guido Westerwelle was "celebrating the very good news". Again, seriously, people?

No doubt, Osama bin Laden was not necessarily a good person. He caused a whole lot of grief and sorrow to many, many people. One may hold him responsible for the general anti-Muslim movement in the US; please don't forget that Muslims were among the victims during the 9/11 attacks, and their families now have to deal with the doubled burden of having to do without a loved person AND being Muslim in the US. He caused death, upheaval, and chaos, but beneath all this, he lived and died for what he believed, and this is more than many people can say of themselves. Osama bin Laden was born into a rich family, enjoyed an excellent education in the West, but turned to fundamentalism at some point, which started his career as being outcast, banished, hunted.

But for all the bad things he has caused, we cannot forget those who are now grieving for him. He had a number of wives, children, and grandchildren, who are now mourning the loss of a loved one. Am I the only one who thinks that public celebrations are disrespectful to the pain this family is feeling? If anything, I go with what our Chancellor, Angela Merkel published after the news broke: relief. Not happiness, not joy, but relief. There may be some people now who can lay back and sleep better knowing that this "enemy of the state" is no more. I personally never felt threatened or scared, and now feel no relief but mostly disgust of people's reaction. I can understand that the families of bin Landen's victims feel that justice has been served and may be able to deal a little easier with their loss, but those crowds at Time Square and the White House? Is this really necessary? Please, if you think it is, tell me, maybe I'm just too much of a liberal humanist to understand.

Thus, today, a day that may stand recorded in history I would like to ask for moderation and keeping those in your thoughts who are in pain, whether it is for the death of the man they called husband, father, or grandpa, or for the renewed pain of having lost a loved one during the attacks of 9/11.