I hope that all is well and peaceful in your world, and that you’re getting some time off this summer to just relax, recharge your batteries, and do the things you want to do. I’ve continued working hard this month, so that I could take a break and enjoy a vacation with my kids.
I was thinking about what to write to you, without boring you with the more mundane parts of my life, or not wanting to talk too much about fashion, or should I tell you I’m working on a new book…..tell you how happy I am to be with my younger kids…..or that I’ve enjoyed seeing friends recently….or that one of my daughters got engaged, which is exciting news for us……and as all those possibilities wandered through my mind, fate intervened with shocking news in Nice: another act of terrorism, the man who rented a truck and ran down a crowd watching the fireworks on Bastille Day, killed 84 people, and wounded 68, 50 of them children.
Where does it stop? How can this be happening? Some of us know the grief first hand of someone we know and love being decimated by these shocking acts. I told you in March of my niece who was at the airport in Brussels, during the attack there, and at 17, lost both her legs. She is still in the hospital, undergoing further surgeries. And even when we don’t know the people affected, our hearts go out to them and their families….in Brussels, or Paris, or Orlando, or wherever it happens. The plots get simpler and simpler. Suicide bombers in a nightclub, or a mad gunman with a machine gun who suddenly opens fire and alters or ends hundreds of lives forever. Now even simpler, a man rents a truck, drives it at full speed where he knows there is a gathering of people celebrating a national holiday, and runs over the crowd, killing and maiming people, destroying lives and dreams and families. It is unthinkable, unimaginable, inconceivable.
Once again, France is mourning its dead, grieving for children whose lives have been cut short and forever altered so needlessly. Several of my own children took a plane that night, and I had my heart in my mouth until they landed. Fear fills our lives, which is the intention. Nothing is sacred or safe, human life is cast aside, dreams die instantly, and futures are erased. Only a month ago, we were shocked and grief stricken over the carnage in Orlando, my own family has yet to recover from the attack in Brussels, and now we are watching it unfold again, with a holiday turned to horror, countless children dead, and others fighting for their lives.
In the long term, I cling to the belief that the forces of good are more powerful than the forces of evil, despite present evidence to the contrary. But in the short term, the news is so unspeakably awful, the scenes of terror so disheartening.
Somehow, we must cling to what is right in the world, we must somehow prevail against violence and fear and broken dreams. We are all changed by these events, and somehow our resolve must grow stronger to protect our world and loved ones, to stand by the values we believe in, and to cling to the principles we hold dear. Around the world, we are shaken by what we hear. It is not just happening to ‘other people’. It is happening to us too. In Paris, 50,000 police, and additional riot troups stood near the Eiffel Tower, to prevent a spectacular fireworks show from turning to violence, and at that same moment, innocent people were being murdered in the South after a similar show.
Please let it stop, let the world come to its senses again, may we find a way to live in peace, to cherish life and our fellow human beings. This cannot be the future for us, to watch civilization and humanity float away on a river of tears. May we have the courage and strength to stand for all that we believe in and preserve our world in peace. And may our prayers for peace and safety be heard.
With grief and all my love, Danielle