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I read this fantastic article at The Guardian today -about the recent events in Norway and how (the author believes) Norway has now lost its innocence as a nation.

You should read it – it took my by surprise how beautiful and touching it was.

Here are a couple of lovely lovely quotes

“…two things always go hand in hand: the joy of being alive and the sorrow that things change. That even the brightest future can never entirely make up for the fact that no roads lead back to what went before. To the innocence of childhood. To the first time you fell in love. To the scents of July, the blades of grass tickling your sweaty back as you leap from a boulder and in the next second are enveloped by the ice-cold meltwater of a Norwegian fjord, with your nose and throat filled with the taste of salt and glaciers. No road back to when you were 17…”

“After the bomb went off – an explosion that was felt where I live in Oslo – and reports of the shootings on the island of Utøya began to come in, I asked my daughter whether she was scared. She replied by quoting something I had once said to her: “Yes, but if you’re not scared, you can’t be brave.”

The article made me start thinking about the dichotomy where, when something awful happens, it makes you realise how thankful you are for everything that you have in your life. Out of something terrible, you get a moment of clarity and happiness. And you feel almost guilty that it took an awful tragedy to make you appreciate what you have.

That feeling always reminds me of this great lyric from an Okkervil River (possibly the greatest band ever) song

“Have you ever lived through a day when the littlest things, in the littlest ways, made you feel you were blessed?”

And how what I want, for my life, is to be able to hold onto that feeling every single day – feeling blessed as I walk to work for the beautiful sunshine and the birdsong, or the autumn leaves and winter snows, being grateful as I do a job I like with people I like, feeling lucky every day that I have enough to eat, a place to live, wonderful friends & family & boyfriend & cats, that I love my life, that I am strong, that I am safe.