Today is Remembrance Day and this year is the one hundredth anniversary of Gallipoli.
It is really important that we remember those we have lost at war. It is really important we remember who fought and returned home. It’s really important that everyone is acknowledged for their part.
I mean no disrespect, but I struggle.
I struggle with the ever increasing media surrounding these events. A nauseating quantity of documentaries, shows and interviews that border on the commercial exploitation of what are, and should be, sombre days.
I found a Victory Medal from the WWII among my grandfather’s things and wondered who was feeling victorious. The ‘We Lost Less Medal’ doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.
My grandparents never attended an ANZAC Day ceremony. We lived by an instinctive, barely spoken mantra:
“Don’t mention the war”
And we didn’t. But memories surfaced in random moments and my grandfather’s eyes would grow wide and he’d rant about blood and bombs and he’d grab hold of my arm so hard it hurt. I was young – too young to understand mental illness and terms like shell-shock and paranoia.
I knew he scared me sometimes. I knew I loved him more than he scared me. I knew this wasn’t him.
My grandparent’s believed, lest we remember.
It’s something I cannot forget.
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