I woke up this morning to the news to see that Manchester had been victim to a suspected terror attack. I spent this weekend in Manchester at a blogging conference so I feel a bit ‘closer’ to this tragedy than I might normally. I cannot believe that someone has targeted a concert primarily attended by children. News stories where children as young as 6 were still missing just break my heart. How do they decide who to target? Are they just looking for large numbers of people or do they purposely seek out the most innocent in our community? It makes me scared to go anywhere, which I know is not the answer because we shouldn’t bow down to fear but nevertheless, I am afraid. How do we talk to our children about terrorism? Where do we even begin?
It seems like nowhere is safe, nowhere is free from risk. Not even a bloody music concert aimed at children. How do I explain that to my daughter? I spend so much time trying to teach her to love other people, how can I explain that there are people filled with so much hate who want to hurt others? How can we possibly teach our children that for some reason, some people hate others because of the colour of their skin, or who they choose to pray to. Some people even hate others because of who they choose to love?
Isabelle is almost 3 years old and I feel like I want to squeeze her so hard and never let her out of my sight. I don’t remember terrorists being a ‘thing’ I was aware of when I was a child and yet my child will grow up hearing news stories like this from all over the world. It’s heartbreaking.
I plan on trying to talk to her today about what to do if she loses mummy and daddy or if she finds herself in a bad situation. Where she should go and who she should talk to. I’m not sure how on earth I’m going to get this across to a toddler but I have to try. My answer will be ‘find the helpers’.
All over social media, people are reaching out wondering how they can help. There was one terrorist. One man filled with what I can only imagine to be hate, but there are hundreds upon thousands of people trying to help.
I will avoid watching the news in front of her, my plan instead is to talk to her about how one man made a terrible choice and did something very bad but lots and lots of people are trying to fix it. How there are people offering up their homes for those with nowhere to go. Taxi drivers are offering free rides to people who do have somewhere to go. How police, paramedics and hospital staff are working through the night, most likely many more hours than they are supposed to in an attempt to make everybody safe again.
My thoughts are with everyone affected by the situation in Manchester. Especially those who are yet to receive that ‘I’m Ok’ text from their loved ones and those who will never receive it. Im going to hug my family a little tighter today.