Yesterday, half watching BBC News 24, I saw the footage of Lance Bombardier Ben Parkinson carrying the Olympic Torch in Doncaster.The 27-year-old paratrooper lost both legs and suffered brain and back injuries in a bomb attack in 2006.
My thoughts as I was moved to tears watching this were, would I have wanted my son to come home from Afghanistan like this? What is preferable, a dead son coming home, or an incredibly damaged son who will never be the same again? What if that were the choice.
Much later yesterday, again by chance, I started watching a BBC Four documentary about Bravo 22 Company, and the play they are now touring called “The Two Worlds of Charlie F”. Wounded, injured and sick Service men and women perform their own story on the West End stage. A unique, unforgettable and uplifting piece of theatre.
“I am so proud and overwhelmed. It is the most moving play I’ve seen for a long, long time. The public should get behind this and be part of something unforgettable” Ray Winstone
I sat well beyond bedtime, watching these badly injured (both physically and mentally) service men and women overcoming pain and PTS (Post Traumatic Stress) symptoms to learn lines, learn a play, perform a play and present this play in a West End theatre. It was incredibly moving and thought provoking. Men and women coming home from war, some of them shadows of the men and women who left for war. I regret I don’t live in the UK, as I would like to see this play on tour.
This morning, on Facebook, one of the first images to find me was this,
I was angry and shocked. (Perhaps I am naive) but what the fuck are we (are we UK as this is US) sending young mums to war for? Why are we not valuing the mother/child bond and the nurture a mother provides in a child’s formative years? I know that we send father’s and I discussed this later with Mark. Fathers of course offer nurturing and succour to their children, but it is a different nurturing, and cannot replace that of the mother. This child may never have seen his mother again! I am so angry and wonder what sort of society we really are. This is barbaric and inhuman. 2./3rds of this child’s year has been denied a mother’s love and care.
War is senseless.
Kathy the sane and angry, discovering the gate is not keeping shit out!