Several classes from the high school I graduated from had a multi-class reunion over the weekend. One of the reunion-goers shared a picture of Mylar balloons floating upward against a periwinkle-blue sky.
It was a pretty picture.
I didn’t go to this reunion because it didn’t include my class, but I’m happy for those upperclassmen and women who attended and enjoyed.
What I’m not happy about though is the release of the Mylar balloons. They were sent aloft in memory of all the deceased classmates. It’s a worthy sentiment, for sure, but considering all we know about the state of the environment and the destructive nature of balloons on wildlife and landscape, I wonder if the reunion-goers, when reminded about the downside of the ritual, would still think it’s worth doing.
Personally, I think it’s time to face the facts about where these balloons go and the damage they cause. It would be better if class reunion remembrances would include the release of a prayer or a song into the air instead of balloons. If they could do something that doesn’t harm the innocents just trying to live their lives in nature, it would make me happy and a lot of innocents, too. The sentiment would still be there, but it would be even more meaningful because of the conscious thought behind the action.
There’s a possibility my thoughts on the subject won’t go over well if/when those who attended the class reunion read what I’ve written here. Maybe I should have scrolled past my friend’s Facebook post and let it float way like a Mylar balloon in the wind, but that’s not how I roll, so I’m just going to speak up, speak out about what I think is right and what I think is wrong.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what we will leave for our young children and grandchildren and nieces and nephews. It’s important to bring awareness about stuff like this, so the children born today, tomorrow, and the day after that have a chance to grow up in a livable world. Not releasing balloons into the air is just a small thing we can do to help.
We are a powerful people. Powerful in the most destructive ways. Nature’s problems brought on by nature are expected. Nature has its ways of diffusing its own catastrophic tendencies, but human destruction due to greed, misdirected power, ignorance and apathy is an unnatural force to be reckoned with. Even the greatest nature of them all, Mother Nature, shivers at the thought of human nature.
What we consciously or unconsciously do to our environment when we send balloons afloat is not a pretty picture. Let’s do our part to change this. Let’s do something different for a change and make life better for everyone and everything.
Hugs from the Heart,