Tragedy struck Toronto this week when a 25-year-old man drove a rented van down the sidewalk on one of the busiest streets in the city. Ten innocent people were killed and 16 were wounded, many critically.
The sun was shining and it was lunch hour. People were strolling along the sidewalk for a breath a fresh air, a break from work or on an errand run. Totally unsuspecting of the horror that lay ahead.
It could have been any of us.
Our hearts break for the broken families and the uncertain futures. But we are also buoyed by the helpers. The bystanders rushing to start CPR or hold someone’s hand. The first responders running towards the danger. The police officer who arrested the suspect without incident while the unstable man seemingly pointed a gun straight at him.
We may never understand why this happened. All we can do is continue to be kind to our neighbours and have hope that love will conquer hate. We must continue to live fearlessly, be grateful, hug our loved ones and be a helper when possible.
As psychologist and author Adam Grant said, “It’s ironic that when you go through a tragedy, you appreciate more. You realize how fragile life is and that there are so many things to still be thankful for.”
What can we be thankful for today?