mandag 25. juli 2011


Friday July 22, 2011 started as a regular day, but by the time it ended, Norway was a different country. And the worst was yet to come. Waking up on Saturday to the news that more than 80 had been killed at Utøya was unbearable. I still don't know if I've really understood the scale of it. I can't let go of a man, a father, who was interviewed on the mainland near Utøya on Friday. At that time no one knew what was happening, no one grasped the magnitude. I feel so deeply for that father. I have no way of knowing if his son made it off the island, but I hope from every corner of my heart that he did. The alternative is simply too brutal to take in. That father's face is etched in my memory.

As a mother I feel an enormous sense of gratitude that my daughter is much too young to be implicated in this, and thankfully young enough to be protected from the images and the horrible truth of it as well. She has naturally noticed that we, her father and I, have been rather unsettled since Friday afternoon, but she goes about her regular business - playing with Duplo, doing jigsaw puzzles, jumping in the enormous puddles from the rain that keeps pouring down. Her very being makes us change our focus, and it helps. Despite the horrible events our life must go on. Yet at the same time there is the sense that things never will be the same. Our nation has been changed for ever.

I have, however, been proud to be Norwegian these past few days. I commend official Norway for keeping their calm and not joining the blame game, and most importantly for handling the situation with grace and dignity. We may have lost our innocence, but we have most definitely proved our sense of solidarity.