It is our first time in this part of the world. We are here to visit family, to enjoy some time together and create memories.
On the way, we decided to stop on the Omaha Beach to pay our respects to the thousands who died here on June the 6th, 1944.
We did it with reverence.
Having witnessed the death of our precious son last July, I do not take pain, especially a mother’s pain, lightly.
On Omaha beach, the suffering of over 3000 mothers was incurred by machine guns, vain ambitions and grandomania.
It was almost overwhelming to set foot on the same beach where so many dreams and hopes and lives were shattered in a matter of mere hours.
But what I didn’t know is that the beach is now guarded by Les Braves, a war monument erected in the memory of the thousands of American soldiers fallen there.
Very appropriately, the memorial, as seen in the picture above, marks in its three composing elements Wings of Hope, Rise of Freedom and Wings of Fraternity.
It made me think of our loss, being on the Omaha Beach.
I truly hope that the devastation that death has brought upon us last year will not be the end of the story…
71 years from now, I wish our lives would have been a promise of Hope, a testament of Freedom and a story written in the Fraterity of suffering.
I hope we will be wise and we will not allow the heart-wrenching pain we live with every day to corrode and destroy the hope in the future.
I hope we will never lose sight of the revelation that sorrow has brought upon us and never let a day go to waste. Death has paradoxically freed us of many social and spiritual bonds. I am determined to live in this new found and so very painfully gained new freedom. I am also committed to extend the same grace to anyone around me and be accepting and supportive of anyone in need.
And I truly wish that this story will bring upon the formation of a new Fraternity. The Fraternity of the suffering, the Fraternity of the pained, the Fraternity of the needy.
Today, on the Omaha beach, where so much suffering and loss was witnessed 71 years ago, we laughed and we enjoyed a moment of freedom.
May our lives and their memories would have left, 71 years from now, a legacy of joy, of freedom and of fraternity.
May our son’s loss not be in vain, just like all those young lives, sacrificed on the shores of Normandy, were not in vain to Europe’s modern history.