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VIEWPOINT – Will wildfires make us stronger?

Brush fire next to Riverside Park walking path brought the reality of wildfires close to home. (Image: Nada Alsalahi)

I DID NOT realize how horrible wildfires are until I lived through this season in B.C. Going through something is totally different than hearing about it, even when we’re paying so much attention.

Those who were evacuated and fled their homes have been through more than what we can imagine, they’re truly heroes. As I’m wondering whether wildfire is making us stronger or not, I know for sure that it’s making the community stronger. Regardless of color, nationality, race, people are providing help to whoever in need.

The only thing that I can think of now during this tragedy, is that nothing will ever remain the same in this life. It’s been said, “Change is the only constant.” And it’s getting more accurate day by day.

Sometimes we need to be brave to face such incidents in life; and sometimes we have to face them, and afterwards, we found ourselves just getting stronger than before. Going through hard times is not the same each time for each person. We need to think of how to be stronger, and not to be afraid of facing it next time, at least that we’ve seen it once.

I have never seen a fire in my life before. This summer, a fire hit quickly and knocked down by firefighters, quickly too. And that was all happening right in front of me and only a few steps away. I was scared. But that day, I faced a great fear of mine, both physically and mentally!

And it happened for a second time. But this time, I was calm.

As I was on a road trip back to Kamloops, in the midnight, a wildfire was burning on the mountain in front of me. Yes, it was scary, but as long as I’m doing what I can do, it doesn’t make sense to panic. Panicking will not solve the problem, in other words.

Another fear is that of losing someone, or death. Which is just another thing that we accept after facing it (perhaps it’s the best way to deal with it…).

Thirty days ago, I lost my father-in-law. Both my husband and I were in shock. I thought our grief over his death would cause more fear of death but I noticed that it did not. Just the opposite, it actually turned a light in that dark part of life, which isn’t dark anymore.

Two main points we started to think about. Why be scared of something that WILL happen no matter what? And something that could be the only way for us to meet our beloved ones whom we lost. Not to mention how many times my husband expressed how visiting the cemetery became the best part of his day.

Facing our fears, willingly or unwillingly, is a way to break through them and become stronger, but it’s absolutely not the only one. Is it the best way? I’m not sure yet.

Nada Alsalahi is a Saudi Arabian student enrolled in the Journalism program at Thompson Rivers University.

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About Mel Rothenburger (4801 Articles)
ArmchairMayor.ca is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At ArmchairMayor.ca he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

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