Every year at this time, we are reminded of our solemn duty to “remember” our fallen heroes of wars past.
One of the great challenges of this word “remember” is the impossibility of remembering what you have not experienced.
Perhaps that is our generation’s greatest gift and at the same time, our most glaring ignorance.
It is particularly difficult as we witness the terrible atrocities of war that seem to be a daily occurrence across the globe.
These last few years with what has transpired in Ukraine, and now in Israel and Palestine, the fog of war seems lifted, more tangible and evident to our eyes.
But that’s just it, unless you live it, you don’t smell it, feel it, or acknowledge it’s disturbing and unyielding cost.
The cost of losing everything of meaning. The cost of living in unimaginable circumstances, seeing the unbelievable savagery of humanity exploited every day all around you.
You go about your day, a life unexplainably anointed. So strange is this dichotomy of birth. Born to a place of wealth and prosperity, or born to a place of savage and unyielding pain.
Better yet, there are those within our ranks who choose to leave the soft underbelly of our comfortable lives and place themselves in harm’s way simply to protect us, and to protect those who cannot protect themselves.
Those who chose to give everything away, just because they felt the call to duty.
Then we are subjected to the rants of those among us who would wish to believe that our civil liberties are being constrained, our freedoms removed. Yet, here we reside still with roof overhead, food on our tables, and the opportunity to live a life so many elsewhere could never even imagine possible.
We who are so anointed by circumstance and luck must simply understand that there have been men and women who gave everything they had, in great suffering, so that we might have our freedom and serenity.
Our debt must be paid always in our thankfulness to the many souls who sacrificed on our behalf, not in complaint of our seemingly difficult first world problems.
Lest we forget…….we are the lucky ones.