by Nadia Ramoutar MMM Communications Coordinator Ireland 06.02.2023
I love learning new things and blogs are the ideal place to share such gems with other people. I recently found out that the word February is one of the most commonly misspelled words in the English language. It is often appearing misspelled even on calendars! Why is February such a short and tricky month? The word comes from the Latin word “Februum” which mean purification. Speculation is that February was the time of year that the Romans had an early spring cleaning festival. Forgive me if you live in the other hemisphere as February marks the end of Summer!
So in this part of the world, February is the time of year when days in this part of the world are starting to get longer and there are hints of Spring in the air. Early blooms are starting to appear. The idea that Winter is on her way out is starting to sink in. Daffodils, Snowdrops, Crocuses and Irises start to appear in full colour here in Ireland, letting us know we survived another winter. Phew!
Spring marks a time of new beginnings and getting rid of what no longer serves us. When we think of getting a jump start on Spring cleaning, perhaps a good place to start is with our thinking! As we ease on into the second month of the year, it is a good time to evaluate how well things are going so far. We have an opportunity to look at what we believe to be true, and to question if things are as we want them to be. We can do some sprucing up of our ideas. Are there negative occurrences in our world that we are slow to question?
Recently, I read an article that for the first time in a long time, sexual trafficking numbers are starting to go down because of more effective ways of disrupting the trafficking rings. Sisters involved in counter human trafficking like our MMM Sisters, are intervening in the way children and vulnerable women are being recruited or tricked by traffickers. Going into vulnerable communities and educating people about these real dangers is making a difference. Standing between the community and the traffickers is paying off, though it take enormous courage to do so.
As we Spring Clean our cupboards, closets and wardrobes, imagine if we also clean up our communities. Imagine us questioning some of the ills and abuses that have gone on for a long time. Recently, when I was out for a walk I saw wrappers and cans left on the ground. I picked them up and put them in bins and recycle places. It didn’t take me long but I grumbled at first “Why should I pick this up? I didn’t leave it here.” I laughed at myself as I cleaned up. I think lots of us questions why our lives need to be about cleaning up other people’s messes. But the truth is a mess is all our mess.
So, for our Spring cleaning I invite you to join me in cleaning up not only my possessions but the ideas I hold dear. I hope to expand my thinking to find ways to make the world better for everyone, not just some. I want to be part of cleaning up what or has been neglected. Let’s make February a time of purification.