Anzac Day


At the moment my biggest concern is that I won’t have enough money to move out by the end of the year. I feel hard done by because I can’t afford a leather jacket I really want and last week I was really stressed about having to ask my boss for time off to go to Africa in August.

Clearly I’ve lost perspective. I think most of us have. But I don’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing and let me explain why.

On the 25th April, 1915 thousands of young Australian and New Zealand soldiers faced a very different reality to the one we know today – a reality that thankfully most of us will never be able to fully comprehend.

Their objective was to capture the Gallipoli peninsula in order to open up the Dardanelles to the allied navies and ultimately to secure Constantinople (now Istanbul in Turkey).

Their plans were interrupted however by fierce resistance and what had been planned as a bold stroke to knock Turkey out of the war quickly became an eight-month stalemate. By December the allied forces were evacuated having failed in its military objectives.

Over 8,000 Australian soldiers had been killed.

It’s a reality that, on this day in particular, makes worrying about traffic delays and smashed iPhone screens immediately irrelevant.

Yet we shamelessly allow these minor inconveniences to become major dramas in our day simply because there’s not much else to worry about. And I think in many ways that’s what our Anzac Heroes wanted for us.

Because of them we have the capacity to provide for our families, determine our own futures and most importantly, feel safe in our own country. They sacrificed their own lives so that we could live ours.

Which is why it’s so important, on this day in particular, that we honour them by making every effort to remind ourselves that we are truly blessed. All our never-ending ‘first-world problems’ – feeling overwhelmed about our weight or what we’re going to have for dinner or how we’re going to afford to send our children to private schools – need to be redefined. They are not problems at all; instead they are a wonderful gift. And one that cost thousands of young Australian lives. It is the greatest gift of all. Freedom.

Now, what on earth am I going to wear today? How lucky I am to have the choice!

Lest we forget.

Read more here.