sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

April 18, 2007

fate is funny like that
posted by soe 10:32 pm

The odds are good that if you spend much of your walk home thinking about what you should blog about fate will provide a topic.

I arrived home to find that I couldn’t unlock the basement door. Neither could the girl from upstairs. Nor could Rudi.

The landlord sent over our handyman, who did manage to get the door open, but we spent quite a bit of time sitting out on the front stoop first this evening.

Luckily, those of us who live in cities tend to be paranoid about things like this. We all know people who’ve gotten stuck in elevators, on the Metro, in traffic. It’s a rare day when I leave the house without iPod, book, and knitting because you just never know. So I was not lacking in entertainment options for my time outside.

And it totally could have been worse. It wasn’t raining. And I thought to pee before I left the office…

Even fate isn’t that cruel.

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posted by soe 1:17 am

Yesterday’s tragedy at Virginia Tech University has lowered a dark cloud over the sun. I can’t help but feel great sadness — for the victims, for the families, for the students, for the faculty and administrators, for the community, for the shooter… For all of us, really…

There is so much anger — and so much sadness. There is such pain. Always so much pain.

My soul aches for it. I, like so many, feel helpless in the face of such emotion.

I cannot raise the dead or heal the wounded. I cannot erase the terror of not knowing if you will live or die — or if your child or friend or parent or sibling was one of the unlucky ones to face down a gun. I cannot return peace of mind. I cannot get a young man the help he needed so badly that he thought his pain could only be alleviated in such a tremendously awful way.

I cannot work what must now be considered miracles.

Now, I can do only small things.

Much like after the terrible events of 9/11, I have turned off the tv. I do not want to hear the terrified phone calls made to 911. I do not want to see weeping parents show photos of happy, hopeful teenagers cut down in the prime of life. I do not want to hear what it was like to be in a classroom when someone I might have known walks in with the intent to wreak armed havoc. I do not want to see the despairing faces of campus officials who have to figure out how to make life safe again for their students. I do not want to hear theories that describe a boy as a madman and that search for the one defining moment in his background that allowed this to happen.

Their pain will not be commuted by my bearing constant witness to it.

My pain that we live in a world where things like this can happen will not be lessened through omnipresent news coverage.

I cannot raise the dead. I cannot right the past missteps. I can only look forward — inward and outward — and learn from the past.

I want to laugh. I have wrapped the idea of humor around me like a cloak. It cannot block the cold world outside, but it can lessen the effect. Yes, tears now chill our souls through but, in time, I hope the laughter emerges victorious.

I want to knit, to create. I cannot bring sunshine back to the world, but I can help to create something that is purposeful and beautiful and made with kindness.

I want to seek out friends and family. Whether to sit with them in quiet or to drink with them in noise, it matters not. It is enough to know there are loved ones out there forming a safe community to see me through these dark, cold days.

I want to say thank you for being part of my community and for letting me be part of yours. Some of you I know; many I do not. Yet you have bravely invited me into your homes to share your joys and your sorrows, the mundane and the extraordinary. There is life and hope behind your words — and it bolsters my belief that we will all survive this each in our own way.

Be gentle with one another. Walk softly and care deeply. Take care of yourselves and of your loved ones. Find what makes you feel safe and hopeful. Know that you matter and that I am glad you are here.

Peace be with you.

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