I am going to talk about the important lesson I learned when I embarked on a trip to Canakkale, Turkey. To give you a profound understanding on what Gallipoli is, here’s the YouTube video as our jump off point.
A mother reading her son’s letter that said” Don’t worry mother. I’ll come back. I am sure of that,” She must be sad and lost after she heard another news that her son, who promised to come home died, during their attack to Gallipoli Peninsula. These thoughts bothered me while we were on our way to the Historic National Park in Gallipoli.
Ladies and Gentlemen and to all the mothers out there good evening…
Shhhh…Ssh. Shhh. Wind’s blowing… Raindrops slowly fell down, disturbed by the faint cold breeze. It was 7o’clock in the morning as the sky had still black, when we arrived in Canakkale, Turkey, the town seaport on the southern Asian coast. As we crossed to the European side of the strait by a ferry, the wind blasted much stronger.
After 20 minutes, we were in Eceabet. Still the thunder followed, with a crash that rattled all over the places. Rain came pelting down smashing against our bodies. We felt very cold. We were shivering badly. I told my husband, “ I don’t know how long I can stand this cold.” My husband who was so assuring and he said,” Don’t worry we can find a warm place to stay.”
Friends, venturing out to this unknown place in a bad weather turned out to be a precious moment of reflection -”I need my mother.”
Because of our desires to visit the Historic national park of Gallipoli Campaign, we ignored all the distress of the weather. What we experienced was just nothing when we compared it to the lives of 500,000 soldiers who also needed their mothers when they shed their blood in this place. I believe that there’s something about seeing the place in Gallipoli Peninsula. I am going to tell you how it changes our lives.
When we visited the battle sites (ANZAC Coves), memorials and cemeteries, I could feel the special spirit of this place. I could feel the heart of a Turkish nation and I could feel the heart of a crying mother grieving for her dying children. The wind in the tree-tops and the waves of the eternal sea sang the song of the heroes of this war. This is what I meant about something more – something more to see and something more to feel. You could fully appreciate what happened when you were there in person.
When we reached to the memorial sites at the Lone Pine tree, I felt broken inside. I couldn’t stop my tears from crying when I felt the strong emotions of pity for the mothers of these dead soldiers. My husband was a tough guy, but that was the first time I saw him, who couldn’t stop himself from being emotional and his tears and raindrops wet his face and bursting out and cried, “ Their mothers suffer so much . They were cared for and protected. Then, they were just sent here to get killed at the very young age. “
It’s unimaginable how hard it was for these mothers to let their sons go, when they knew they had little chance of returning. The images of war and ruthless attacks upon their children were very painful for them. Despite of the painful reality their mothers had to face, their only consolation was their children died as heroes – heroes of war.
Finally, we went home as new people – people who are stronger after we survived the extreme cold; people who are spiritually enlightened bringing the thought that everything happened in the past, Gallipoli is an extremely moving place because it reminds us the love of a mother. “Don’t worry mother. I’ll come back. I am sure of that,” Reading these lines, a mother would say,” I know son, you’ll come back to heaven and you are at peace with the creator, our God.”