Brilliant humans, we can do better for earth and all her creatures
Yesterday I watched a clip of a beautiful young girl from the Tigray region of Ethiopia. Both her parents had been shot, her father in front of her. Now the eldest child of several siblings, her aunt is caring for them all on an income that funds less than one.
This kind of tragedy is everywhere, everyday. In my home country domestic violence, severe weather events…if we recorded just todays global atrocities to living beings and our earth…just today…not yesterdays…if we really felt the scope of this…none of us might rise from our beds.
We all reach an age where we wonder at the lottery of life. Born here, or there. Gifted this, or that. Denied this…or that.
Lucky me, born to Australian parents, good people, happy home. Middle class…access to good education, travel, healthy food, health care.
Like most young people I took it all for granted. And like most of us growing up, something I continue to do…and plan to continue to do until I die..life has forged me in its crucible. That hard arrogance, traces remnant, but mostly gone. The bone deep realisation that my lottery of birth is such a gift…such a gift…
To arrive where I am has been hard. I went from the bright eyed women married, young child, to the single mother of a two year old, self employed. Never realising until I looked back that even in this liberal society of Australia the cards were stacked against me. But the experience in that crucible…ah..for that I am grateful.
In that journey I found my heart, compassion, empathy for those not as lucky as I.
Now as I am living a life that is happy beyond anything I ever imagined possible, each and every day I am humbled with gratitude.
This does not require effort. To practice gratitude. For the effort was to arrive here, and not be broken and angry.
To practice gratitude is to breath.
It is to look at the ocean as I am now as I write, to feel the warm sun on my bare skin, to hear the hum of conversation all around me at the coffee shop. To be alive. Well. Loved. To love.
And to know that for my lucky lottery I also have a responsibility towards those who missed out.
I do not know the young woman in Tigray. But it is for her, and millions like her, that I work.
Brilliant humans, we can do better for earth and all her creatures.
My work is at the systems change level, wide in scope, requiring patience. I am ever grateful to those on the front line working to support people to make it to the more beautiful world we all know is possible.
Photo taken March 28th 2021