Like so many people around the globe, I have become somewhat desensitized to the
goings on in the Middle East. It is not that I don't care, I do. It is simply
that when violence is served up almost daily, when my morning news is headlined
with death and my evening news serves to sum up the day's carnage, I can do no
more than shake my head and wish it were different.
After all, I sit thousands of miles away, safe in the comfort of my nice home,
my pretty suburb, my fairly Dr Suess-Green Eggs & Ham, rhyme and reason,
predictable life. I am ensconced in an existence in which weeks pass with the
biggest conflict I encounter being my daughter and her choice of clothing.
As a parent, I watch the news and give thanks every day that my daughters are
free, happy and relatively safe. I say relatively because we all know that no
place is completely safe these days. As a parent, I also give thanks that I am
here to raise them, guide them and love them; the triumvirate of all decent
I suppose I take that threesome for granted. I mean what loving parent doesn't
place the well being of their children above all else? What involved Mother or
Father doesn't fear their own death, only because it would leave their children
without them? I can tell you that if I went prematurely, God would have a huge
problem on His hands. There would not be a second's peace in the hereafter until
He put me back. Dog, tree, hermit crab, I don't care. Just let me be with my
children as they grow.
That's why, when I read the news of the Palestinian mother who became a suicide
bomber, I was shocked out of my desensitized state. A mother?!?! Actively
choosing to become, as she stated in her farewell video, "deadly shrapnel", over
remaining the touchstone of her children's lives? Choosing her perception of
martyrdom over the hugs and kisses of her 1 year old and 3 year old children?
Choosing to leave her family in stunned disbelief, rather than share the
precious moments that are fleeting enough as it is?
As a mother I think, no, I need to believe that she felt it was a right and
proper "cause". That she must have believed in her "mission" without hesitation.
Perhaps she believed that you have to take risks to effect change. Perhaps she
was confident that in detonating herself and taking other lives with her, she
was helping to alter the future. Perhaps like the Dr. Suess character The Lorax,
she felt, "unless someone cares a whole awful lot, things aren't going to get
better, they're not."
Perhaps she's right on one count. After all, she did irrevocably change the
future for a grieving husband and two bewildered children.
And even when they've cried a whole awful lot, that won't make Mommy come back.
About the Author: Linda Sharp is an internationally recognized author &
columnist whose work wraps around the globe to appear in print publications from
Maine to Malaysia, as well as across the web. Linda is also creator of the
totally irreverent and hysterical website, Sanity Central -- A Time Out From
Parenting! ( http://www.SanityCentral.com ) Her latest book, Stretchmarks On My
Sanity: The Growing Pains of Raising a Family, has earned her rave reviews and
comparisons to the late Erma Bombeck. She may be reached via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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