Today, during second period, two of our senior students left their classroom without permission.
One was hysterical and the other was crying quietly behind her. It captured our attention. Both students had lost their fathers – one to illness and the other to war in the Homeland.
They had been watching a historical film. It had triggered buried memories.
The second girl regained her composure and returned to class. The first girl sat in our staffroom sobbing for another half hour. She sat and she sobbed. Her scarved head was bowed, her whole body was shaking.
She stared at a yellowed photograph. My colleague said she rubbed the picture with her fingertips, caressing the face of a man she had never met.
It was the only photograph of her heroic dad.
We offered to scan the photo and send it to another colleague who could Photoshop the cracks and creases, to somewhat bring the only image of her Freedom Fighter back to life. She asked if we could put a picture of her next to his and I told her we could do anything.
Tomorrow we’ll print the photograph and buy a frame.
So this week, when I’m asked about my favourite things, I actually feel my stomach churn. Today I was brought barrelling back down to earth – shaken by the story of this seventeen year old girl.
Measuring my worth and happiness in material possessions feels futile. It’s nice to have nice stuff, but the high from nice stuff is incredibly fleeting.
Today, my favourite things are my family, our safety and our health.
Linking up with The Lounge over at The Very Inappropriate Blog.