I see the little white, well-fed girl and boy looking up at their mother’s face for confirmation that they are going to be okay as they both cling to her bare legs where she stands. They are in their recently landscaped backyard, with its sturdy play fort, the brightly painted jungle gym and swing set, now rocking in place, with sounds falling on their ears, sounds they have never before heard, almost like the growling rumble of some unseen monster.
They have seen every Disney flick, know all the different characters created to be experienced, bigger than life at Disneyland, their favorite place to go, every chance they get. They have ridden all the rides, from the darkened tunnels in a faux boat, where mystery and intrigue wow their imaginations with the appearance of illusory creatures in the walls, or popping out of the water, to the dizzying rides on the roller coaster and the ones that make them feel like they may regurgitate those tacos they ate at lunch. These rides always elicit screams of a mixture of joy and terror so that when they walk away from them, a profound sense of relief floods their cells and they are carefree, happy children again, ready for the next thing.
Right now, however, it is all an unknown, quite sudden in its manifestation. The earth seems to be moving under their feet, and the mother realizes that the tremors she feels are stronger than any she has ever felt previously, given she has spent her entire 34 years in this area of California, where everyone is okay with the ever present threat of “the big one.”
She feels the vibration and hears the simultaneous ringing of her smart phone. She pulls it from her back pocket, clicks on the talk button, and sees her husband’s face on the screen.
“Where are you?” she asks, as she discerns the worry in his brow.
“I am only a few blocks away from you guys. Get ready to leave as soon as I get there. We have to make a run for it! No time to lose!”
Her thoughts whoosh through her brain as she grasps how dire are these next moments.
“Okay! We’ll be ready!” and she hits the red, end talk button shoving the phone into her back pocket of her jean cut-offs. She reaches for her son’s hand and her daughter has already grabbed her left hand.
“Come on, guys, your daddy is coming to get us. We are making a very exciting trip to the mountains, right now, and we need to be ready to go as soon as he gets here! Grab your jackets and your boots, with a pair of socks and clean underpants. Throw them into one backpack and while you do that, I will pack some food and water to take. Get going! ”
The ground is still rolling under their feet, but they run into their newly renovated home, scattering in two directions, the kids to their bedrooms and the mother to the kitchen. She grabs a large, soft, insulated tote and pulls open the fridge door to find the bottled water she keeps stored there at all times, throwing all 12 bottles into the bottom of the tote. She shuts the door and looks in the pantry. There is the peanut butter, the canned tuna, the canned chicken, and a large bag of corn chips. These are tossed into the tote. She takes the loaf of wheat bread off the counter top and adds it to the stores. She glances down the hall and yells, “Come on, kiddos! It’s time to go.”
She realizes she needs jackets for her husband and herself and pulls open the hall closet to take whatever is there. His hiking boots as well as hers are sitting on the floor of the closet, which she adds to the pile of stuff she will carry out their front door.
The front door opens and her husband gives her a quick hug and then turns to yell for the children to come. They are so glad to see their daddy, but he does not spend any time greeting them with the usual hugs and kisses. He picks up the things his wife has ready to take and escorts the kids to the car, throwing stuff into the back.
“Come on, let’s go! We can out run this thing.”
This is only a mini vision of what I can imagine people may go through as the ground begins to shake and the ocean drops, then surges toward land, creating such an impact that it is difficult for anyone to know which way to run.
Today is September 23, 2017 and it feels as though predictions are coming true, yet the day just keeps happening, as it always does, with nothing out of the ordinary occurring, not here in this neck of the woods, anyway. I have not had the sense of urgency to get things done that I normally have. It is almost as though I am just waiting for the next bit of news that will say where the latest earthquake happened, as I heard this morning. Another earthquake shook Oaxaca, Mexico earlier, the second one in the last week or so. It is almost as though I am living in a dream, slightly suspended above the earth, registering the terror and angst transmitting from all the human beings on the planet. I let go my tendency to want to call someone close to me, for they do not really want to think about anything I might wish to say. They simply wish to stay focused on their own lives without giving into the possibility of feeling concern for others, what they may endure.
I, on the other hand, am too aware of how much has been happening, how interconnected everything is, and how close to home it is when another suffers fear, loss, despair, injury and even death. However, I see life as intertwined with “death.” With each ending comes a new beginning, except that we are so entrenched in this third dimension, we lose sight of the possibility there may be multitudes of dimensions, something waiting on the other side of the door that we step through when we “die.”
All those who study and adhere to all the different religions of this world probably find comfort in the teachings whenever musing on the inevitable, for without a doubt, everyone has that awareness, always present, like the low rumble of energy that, were it magnified in sound, might make all of us leap with joy or become catatonic with fear. I have known the catatonic state, and I have felt the sense that I could leap with joy, fly, even, and I would much rather go with the flying!
That deep rumbling is always with me, and when I sense fear on the part of anyone, I push down the urge to reach out to them, to attempt to alleviate for them the fear, primarily because I know it is something we must all go through, experience at the core, in order to grow. I may be helpful to another, if asked, but I have found that no matter how much I might think I know what someone is going through, I truly do not. Each journey is personal and individual; thus it falls to each of us to experience all that is part of it, without interference.
As a 7-month-old baby, I discovered how to crawl. As a toddler, I discovered how to take steps, sometimes falling. As a young child, I learned to blow on the gravel-filled scratches on my knees after falling off the bicycle, to get back on the bike and keep riding. I am barreling through this life, learning that in spite of everything gone through, every stage, every pain and every sorrow, as well as the feelings of elation and joy, these are the ways for me to grow, to expand, to flourish, and, eventually, to let go.
These are definitely interesting times. I am here, sheltered from the storm, at least for now, and wonder what more is to come. Will I pass on out of this life without ever experiencing as complete a connection with another as possible, or does it even matter, since I feel psychically connected to everyone I know. If I do not talk with you, it is because it is almost too much to so do, draining, not especially nurturing. Rather, let me send forth a frequency of love and admiration for each, with thoughts toward relief from pain and suffering, possibly culminating in a sense of peace and well-being, in spite of all that is happening now in this world of ours. We are going through tumultuous times, yet, eventually, it is a new day, a fresh start, and it is all okay.
This is what I must tell myself!