writer's block

9:26 AM


I told my husband the other day that I've had the worst case of writer's block this week. Every day I open this blank page and stare at the blinking cursor and nothing comes out and I close my laptop. As the week worn on I figured out why...
All I've been talking about with friends and family, reading and thinking about has been the news. Paris. Syria. Turkey. I'm trying to understand, to inform myself. To see how I can help, if at all. And honestly, I can't think about much else. At the same time I am afraid to talk about here because 1) it's considered passé for bloggers to talk about politics 2) I fear becoming entangled in an endless mess of political correctness. And yet...
And yet I want to say first and foremost that my heart goes out to the people of Paris and the horrors that they witnessed this past Friday. I want to say that my heart has been aching for the people of Syria and the ongoing crisis there and I continue to research the best way that our family can make ourselves useful there. I also want to say that I understand the bewilderment of some over the coverage of the Parisian attacks versus the daily horror that has been penetrating the lives of people in Syrian and other war-torn countries for decades. To admit that there is a double standard is not taking any side, it is simply stating a known fact. However, this should never be discussed in a way that takes away from the pain that so many families in Paris are feeling and will continue to feel for the rest of their lives.
I couldn't help but engage on Friday. It hit me hard. It's a city I hold near and dear. I walked those streets with my husband. I enjoyed the graciousness and kindness of the Parisians. It was unforgettable. The city is unforgettable. When I first heard the news I could picture it. This is simply human nature - the closer to our hearts the more it hurts, the more "real" it is. And trust me, as I felt all of this I was also bathed in guilt. Guilt for the fact that we are not equally affected by non-Western tragedy. That it's different. Perhaps we as humans will continue to evolve and our capacity for empathy will change and grow. But right now it is undeniable that the western world was visibly more shaken by what happened in Paris.
I had to make sense of these warring feelings for myself; and the way I was able to make peace with it was by reminding myself that whether Syrian or French everyone is a human. And there is no such thing as "too much love" or "too much empathy." And more than anything our capacity for empathy starts at home and I have the blessing and the massive responsibility of raising two people to care for others deeply. And perhaps I can raise them to be better than myself. Perhaps I can raise them in a way that ensures that their heart breaks equally for any person, in any country, suffering from any type of injustice. That's all I cling onto during times like this - that we can do better, be better.
Perhaps I'm completely off base here. I definitely do not pretend to know what I'm talking about, I am certainly no expert in this field. This is just me, a person, sharing with other people what has been on my mind because silence feels inadequate at a time like this.

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