A year ago today I was sitting on the craft room floor sorting out some stuff when the first reports of explosions on the London Underground came on the radio.
My first thought was "Thank God Hubby doesn't work in the City anymore"
Then I thought "Carol's going to Liverpool Street for a course today......." I looked at my watch and thought that she'd probably be there and safe by now, but I decided to text her anyway.
Then I thought of Sue's partner, I knew he worked shifts and hoped he was on the one that meant he'd be safe at home. Sue wasn't around on msn, I sat for a minute not knowing whether to call her or not, in the end I decided that if she was at the nursery, chances were she hadn't heard anything and would prefer to know what was going on. So I rang her - I'll never forget making that call, how do you break news like that to someone? You can feel the fear that you've caused. But at least she was able to contact him and know that he was still safely in his office.
Between my call to her and her getting back to me to say he was safe I had a call that brought both immense shock and massive relief. Carol had been caught up in the explosion on the tube. She had just got out of the tunnel safe and unhurt but had been so close to the explosion that she and her work colleague had seen more destruction and pain than anyone should have to witness. I heard the confusion, the pain and the horror of what she'd seen in her voice.
Two people made a rare journey from Oxford to London to attend a day course and from that moment their lives were changed in ways most of us will never know - just because they were on a tube train on the morning of 7th July 2005.
Carol, You've been so brave over this last year, learning to cope with your experiences and fighting against letting them damage you further. I have the utmost admiration for the way you've dealt with all of this. My thoughts are with you today.
So many individuals with hate in their hearts, who use all sorts of excuses - and I believe they are excuses - to terrorise and make their fellow men suffer. They seem to revel in other people's pain, to want nothing more than to destroy our inherent faith in the basic kindness, goodness and love that lies in the hearts of the rest of us. We can't let them win.