Usually on Canada Day cities and towns across this country will shoot off fireworks. I love fireworks. I love watching the expression of little kids as they react in excitement to the colourful bursts in the night sky. A wonderful lady I know grew up during the war years and only until recently was she able to stand and watch fireworks. Why?
Some 65 years she lived during bombing raids. The sound of sirens caused her and her family to go rushing into bunkers or wherever they could find shelter. The banging sound of the bombs exploding around them were etched in her memory as she sat there, hoping that everyone would make it through.
Ironically, bombs exploding sound similar to fireworks. And so all these years she has avoided fireworks because they remind her of a time when she could not celebrate. It reminds her of a time when people could not go to the park with ice cream cones, gather with thousands of others and cheer on the fireworks bursting in air. She remembers running for her life. Interesting how the same sound can trigger war memories for a survivor of bombing raids and at the same time trigger good memories for me.
The first time I recall seeing/hearing fireworks was at a theme park in the States. The sound of fireworks brings me back to a great time with my family. It never occurred to me until someone pointed it out that there are reasons why some people have a hard time with fireworks.
I was happy for her to be able to see the fireworks. Actually, I was happy for her that she could hear the fireworks and be able to associate that with something good instead of something terrifying. I don’t think that association will ever be completely changed. Exactly how do you forget a bombing raid?
But if the look on a young child’s face breaking into excitement at the sight of a firework going off can bring healing to this wonderful saint, then I think the fireworks have done their job.