is a "tweet" I have just seen from authorJoanne Harris - in conversation with Matt Haig, another author.
And yes, yes, yes! Being alive is a privilege. Let's treat it with respect.
There is an appalling front page story in our state newspaper this morning. I knew about it last night. It kept me awake. A mother and two young children have been murdered. The woman's partner has been charged. It happened in one of the most outer, almost rural, suburbs of the city I live in.
Now people are asking how and why and what could have been done to prevent it. The same questions are asked every time. Being alive is a privilege. Will their immediate neighbours think of that this morning or will they just wallow in the shock and awfulness of it all? I suspect the latter.
Almost every morning my mail box will have at least one, often more than one, story of disaster. There are the stories we all read in the press or hear in the media and there are the stories which don't make it that far. These are the sad, individual cases where people, particularly women and children and the very old are caught up in wars not of their own making, which they don't understand or support. They just want to get on with their lives. They know that being alive is a privilege. So many people around them have died that finding themselves alive in the morning is something that some of them wonder at. There is the dread of trying to get through another day and yet, underneath it all, there is that small thing, that very small thing, called "hope" and they know they have to nurture it.
The Senior Cat had a friend visiting yesterday. This man asked me why I was still bothering to work. Wasn't, he wanted to know, looking after the Senior Cat enough? My answer was no, it isn't. While I know there is a child out there who wants to be alive and needs help to communicate that fact then I have a responsibility to help.
Because, being alive is a privilege. It is also a responsibility.