As most of you probably heard/saw yesterday ALL OVER the news, there was a horrible shooting in my hometown of Ottawa yesterday and another incident outside of Montreal on Monday. I happened to be watching the news yesterday morning when it all started to pour onto the screens and it was so disheartening to see such horror taking place in locations that are so familiar to me, my friends, my family. My brother-in-law is also a Reservist and it’s hard not to take an act like this personally.
Terrorizing yourself with first-hand accounts, graphic tweets, images, and heart-wrenching stories can become addictive. It’s like that thing about staring at a car crash. I’ve decided to stop looking at the news photo galleries and to not watch anymore news coverage. I’ve seen the images and I’ve read the accounts. They’re all difficult to digest. Some of them, I think, should have never been shared in the first place. Today, I am choosing to focus on not letting fear creep in and, more importantly, on gratitude. I am grateful that I live in this country. It is flawed but it is generous, open, and free. When you grow up somewhere where these qualities are a given, you tend to take it for granted. Yesterday was a reminder of how lucky we are that events such as these are so uncommon here and, at the same time, that this world of ours is much smaller than we think. Let’s be kind to one another.