Photo by Stijn Swinnen on Unsplash

War is inevitably one of the most significant events in the world. While its aftermaths primarily fall on changing or scrapping societal systems, families, especially children, still play a role in beating the odds during and after.

Human aggression is complicated. But as complicated as it is, it chiefly stems from man’s instinct to survive and stay afloat. Man is naturally a survivor. Throw him into challenging circumstances, and he will grapple, instinctively beating the odds to win over any obstacles. Man can be violent, peaceful, aggressive, and cooperative simultaneously, but above everything, he merely wishes to survive.

This essential desire for survival has led to social inequalities and competition over material resources and, over time, birthed large-scale conflict. Wars weren’t caused by instinct. They didn’t exist because man is naturally aggressive. Instead, it’s a consequence of their instinct to survive.

Humankind’s History With War

Throughout the history of humanity, there have been 10,624 battles recorded. This number takes into account significant conflicts that have significant-enough effects on society. But regardless of which strife it considers remarkable, this record shows one thing: history has seen so much bloodshed.

Among this massive number, the second world war was deemed the deadliest and largest conflict in history. What sparked such massive revolt between nations was the economic crises from the Great Depression and the remaining unresolved tension from the first world war. With more than 30 countries involved, this event has undoubtedly seen the most blood spilled over time. In fact, by its resolution, an estimated 60 million people had lost their lives over a conflict that could have been settled through diplomatic discussions.

Beyond the profound dispute throughout this wide-reaching scale were superficial but equally extreme effects on families. What happened within countries fighting each other were families fighting their hardest to survive and see the light through the events.

Beating the odds during such intense strife would be close to impossible. Nobody could genuinely imagine the intensity of what happened throughout the second world war. If not for memoirs of survivors and veterans, like The Letters of C.M. Case, a family historical novel about the second world war, nobody would come close to defining how hard these days were.

Beating the Odds and Fate

For most, the second world war was the darkest years of their lives. It was filled with fear and confusion; of the possibility of death or the separation of families. For most, the war meant the destruction of their homes and the complete loss of properties and resources. Yet, despite these, others still managed to brave through these days, beating the odds and surviving the war.

Surpassing rubbles and death, another observable effect of the war on society was the withdrawal of the youth. Instead of frolicking under the sun’s peaceful warmth, the youths were forced to enter the military and fight for their lives. Without an ounce of knowledge or experience, they were thrust into the field to win their nations over. The fear of families losing their children was exacerbated as they proactively struggled for their lives.

Hope was a massive factor that might’ve helped them stay sane despite these circumstances. To others, hope might have been a lost friend during these days. But to these individuals, it was the only thing they had to hold on to. In hoping that better days were coming and they’d soon welcome their children back, the war became easier to endure and live by.

Hand in Hand With Each Other

Right through the war, physical aggressions and bombings were a natural occurrence. It wouldn’t be wise for people to stay put in their homes. Hence, most of the population has been evacuated somewhere safer. With fear in their hearts, millions of civilians were forced to novel environments and encouraged to settle in places they would’ve never welcomed the idea of.

People were gathered with those they weren’t familiar with and forced to play house with those they didn’t know. Yet, instead of looking at it through fearful and dubious eyes, it could’ve been better to look through an optimistic lens. This circumstance might’ve been the best they experienced since the war began. These people might be strangers now but share the same experiences and trouble to endure. But to others, it could’ve been miserable moving from one place to another, seeing new faces after each move.

During the war, it might have become easier for people to welcome strangers. After all, they are left to fend for themselves, equally alone. Throughout the constant evacuations, people nurtured a new kind of system and community that thrived on volunteerism. At the peak of these challenges, this value was one people had to nurture. They had to help each other cope and see hope in the darkness they were plunged into.

While their situation was chiefly unfair, they didn’t have to suffer altogether.

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