I don’t talk about current events here because I don’t feel like I have anything unique to add to the coverage or the punditry. Everyone has their favorite commentary sites for that, and I don’t hope to compete. I just try to keep a diary here in my sacred litttle webspace, talking about what I’m an expert on: me.

So for the fact that I’ve refrained from talking about the London bombings today, well, I know you’re not surprised. But that doesn’t mean that I haven’t felt oddly out of sorts today. Although, admittedly, I think I’m more disconcerted by the fact that NOTHING has changed — at least, not in my world. My daily routines were completed without disruption. I’m still thinking about the same things that were in my head yesterday, still doing the same things and, particularly, NOT doing other things that I might want to start doing.

I ache for those who are experiencing the fear and disbelief that plagued us in 2001. Pain comes in so many different forms and shows up at so many different times — grief arrives in tidal waves, pummeling the surf and then subsiding, only to show up again when you least expect it. For some of us, it shows up late and leaves early, and just when you think the storm was a mild one, the hurricane descends … and renders us unrecognizable.

Oftentimes, the faces change so much that they wouldn’t even know what we used to be like because they haven’t known us long enough — but they don’t have the opportunity to know the beauty that was there before we were ravaged by heartbreak. And after the pain subsides and is replaced by the utter void that follows emotional overload, we’re like babies turning into toddlers — we fear that our newly rediscovered “sea legs” will fail us. We wonder if we’ll ever be able to stand on our own again … we wonder how we’ll ever be able to save ourselves when it seems like there’s no lifeline for us to even crawl toward.

But our friends across the pond who are in exactly the same place we’ve all been in (whether in 2001 or after any life tragedy) will eventually learn to not jump reflexively at every shadow they see. Eventually — and I know they don’t believe it now — they will restore normalcy or learn to redefine it into something acceptable, comfortable, workable, passable.

They will learn, as we have over here in the States, to just be grateful to have another day. To not expect too much from it — to just enjoy it when it goes well and to hope like hell that it doesn’t get any worse. To look past life’s little annoyances because we’ve got it pretty good, all things considered. To try very hard to forget that our very existences can be eradicated in a heartbeat at the hands of some sick fuck who’s willing to die for his so-called god — someone who should live long enough to have the family members of those he’s killed/maimed beat the everloving shit out of him and make him suffer at least a fraction as much as they are.

They will make promises to themselves to change the way they are living — to make amends with some, to cut ties with others. To replace the bad with the good. To start that hobby that’s been swirling around in their heads. To use that damned gym membership. To tell someone that they love them. To quit that miserable, soul-sucking job and find one that’s incredibly more fulfilling. I know — I’m living proof of the benefits of making the big changes that you’re always thinking/talking about.

They will eventually stop feeling the mash-up of emotions, and they will even move past the bewilderment and stillness within. They will learn that you simply cannot make sense of what happened — there is no “why” suitable enough to explain certain things away. They might lose their faith — and a lot of us have — but they will also find it again, at least, in a form that is more palatable to their personal beliefs that have been so violently rocked.

And they will become complacent again, inasmuch as possible — they will find that looking over one’s shoulder, anticipating something even if they don’t know what it is, becomes as reflexive as inhaling and exhaling.

Ultimately, they will become a shade less idealistic. We’re resilient, don’t get me wrong, but we lose a bit of our softness — we develop a bit of a protective edge, even if it’s only for show.

But that’s not to say that we’re not waiting for something, anything to happen to restore our faith — something to which we can look forward, somethings and someones who will put the sparkle back in our eyes, somedays that will be lighter and less filled with anxiety. We will be grateful for our good days, sure, but we will start hoping for better ones again — we will give ourselves permission to want, demand and EXPECT more.

Someday, they’ll recognize themselves in the mirror again. I promise. And my wish is that these days arrive sooner rather than later.

On iTunes: DJ Tiesto, “Just Be”

2 Responses to Disconcerted

  1. Shizgirl :

    Well said! And it can be applied to one’s more personal tragedies, as well.

  2. Dawn :

    Heh — you know me, Shiz. There was something much bigger within me motivating this post. 😉