Last night in Leuven, not Manchester

1 AM 

I sit with Beertje in my arms on the edge of my bed, feeding him back to sleep. I curse because the warm weather apparently makes him drink more frequently again while I was just cheering the fact that he finally seemed to start sleeping long blocks at night, only drinking once.

As usual I grab my phone to log the feeding in an app and I see a push alert of breaking news on an explosion in Manchester. I curse, I push it away, I don't want to see such stuff in the middle of the night, but it's too late... I am aware. While reading a tweet reply that it was something in the backstage, I hush myself and turn off my phone again.

I sit with the sleeping Beertje in my arms for a while and I watch his face.  He has the cutest round cheeks.

4.10 AM

Beertje is awake again and I couldn't resist picking up my phone again. More push alerts are on the main screen which leave no doubt that there are many casualties due to a terror attack.
I rock my baby and watch him. I turn on the webcam to watch Kabouter sleep for a short moment. My little world.

I remember being sleepless during the Bataclan attacks end 2015, feeling nausea and fear, watching Kabouter asleep as well while rubbing my big pregnant belly. I worried in which world they'd grow up. I felt very distressed.
So much has happened since then: #prayforIstanbul,  #prayforBrussels, #prayforNice, #PrayforStockholm, #prayforBerlin, #prayforParis, #prayforLondon, .... I'm shocked when I realise that all has happened in Europe withing the last 1,5 year.

I think about the 2 busy parades where we were last weekend, where I took my children with me into the crowd without any second thought (thank goodness for that); about the loose powder gun shots that were shot in the parade from the "French army" which were extremely loud and smoky, where Jan commented that he was surprised they got permission to do so during this terror security level. (and the public just reacted really normal to those shots, thank goodness).

I see the images of the drowned toddler in Turkey, the doll of a little girl in the middle of the road in Nice, a little afraid boy in a hospital in Aleppo, crowds burning candles.

The weirdest thing is that I don't feel many emotions. Whereas the Bataclan attack had a major impact on me, right now I don't feel scared, not sad, ...just numb.

Beertje's eyes fall down heavy and he glides back to sleep in my arms. We sit together at the edge of the bed in silence.


yab said…
Ik moet toegeven dat bij elke nieuwe aanslag het nieuws minder hard binnenomt. Alsof er (spijtig genoeg) een soort gewenning optreedt.

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