When the World Doesn’t Stop Spinning

I hope that this post does not offend anyone. I don’t believe the contents are offensive, but each of us has a different level of sensitivity so I can’t say that it won’t touch someone the wrong way. If you find that you are the one who is wrongly touched, please charge it to my head and not my heart.  I’m not going to dedicate too much of this post to the details of the tragedies that occurred yesterday. For one there were a number of them so that would take quite a bit of research. But the main reason is that I don’t feel like it’s my place to say too much about them. It is not that I feel that its “none of my business,” but its because I feel like it would be a tad disrespectful for me to speak on something that I did not experience.  A story is better told by a main character than an outside witness. This is not to downplay those who are dedicating posts or pictures to what has happened, but I have just never felt comfortable doing that.

Now I said that to say this: when things such as the terrorist attacks in Paris or the earthquake in Japan happen I feel extremely powerless.  Of course, I’m not a god so I can’t stop an earthquake nor can I prevent someone from committing heinous acts against our fellow humans but to me that just feels like a personal problem. It feels like due to some weakness or insignificance of mine I can’t step in and save someone. It’s a disconcerting feeling. I recall when 9/11 occurred. I was in the 4th grade when the announcement came over the intercom, and our teachers turned on the little corner television. Everyone’s eyes were glued to the screen for what felt like hours of watching replays of the planes hitting the towers. Then we were packed up and shipped home to our families who sat glued to the couch watching replays just the same.  In a very foolish manner I blamed myself for the attacks. I’m not even going to go in full detail of my mindset of that (because I was a little weirdo…). I had no connections with the hijackers and I’m obviously not going to send a plane filled with people flying into a building filled with people. I was just a middle schooler from Mississippi watching buildings collapse and planes explode. But I went to bed that night, and I woke up the next morning. I went to bed the next night and woke up the next morning. I went to bed over a hundred nights and woke up over a hundred mornings.  Time didn’t stand still. The world didn’t stop spinning. School wasn’t cancelled. My mom’s job didn’t tell her to not come in work any days following. Life went on. And that is just one of the most fucked up things about tragedy. Life always keeps going. There’s not a moment to stop and recover. There’s no opportunity to say, “you know what God? I need a break. Can we just pause for like a week or a month? Maybe a whole year?” I know people always say, “Time heals all wounds” (whatever Adele!), but in my opinion that’s just purified BS. Time can’t even heal a physical wound much less an emotional one. If you poke at a cut, pick at the scab, suffocate it, keep it too moist, etc then guess what? That cut is going to take its sweet baby Jesus time healing. It may never heal. In fact, it may end up getting infected and getting worse over time. Time is never a healer though it is required in the healing process.

I know I’m being cynical and ask your forgiveness in my lack of optimism, but my heart just goes out to those who are suffering right now. Whether it be from the fact that they were injured, the fact that they know someone who was injured, or the fact that someone they loved didn’t make it.  I feel for those whose sense of security has been shattered. Those who are expected to pick up and move on at some point in their lives because that’s what healthy people do. Those who have been blatantly robbed and left searching for whatever good remains in this world. Because this world is good. Even if the news plays the same reels about death, injustice, crime, and hate. This is a beautiful and good world we live in with some not so beautiful or good people. With some pretty messed up natural occurrences that wreak havoc and reap destruction. And it’s things like this that can make even the bluest of skies the grayest. It’s what makes you feel like, “what am I doing here? What kind of world am I living in? Why should I stay?” And it takes a lot of power and endurance to push through that and press on. I commend the strength of those who stand and say that they are not afraid. I am miles away and even I am afraid, but you wear your courage boldly without stripping away your grief. To those who have suffered a tragedy that may not be on the scale of terror attacks or earthquakes you still deserve commendation. You too have suffered and yet press on.

I wrote something a while ago and I ended up going on Customink and making it into a t-shirt. “I have found death to be inconvenient. Living, all the more so.” Life can truly be inconvenient. Life, for some strange reason, can kick your ass and burn your cookies. Then show up to your door the next day asking for a cup of sugar. Life is just straight up weird, even questionable. We cling to it, we throw it away, we decide if someone else’s is worthy of continuation, and we decide if our own is worthy.  Life is life. Life just keeps on going. And it takes a hell of a lot to keep going with it.

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