Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Broken Planet

            A friend of mine found himself stuck in Japan with his wife and two little kids, far too close to the nuclear radiation, and with far too little resources to remove themselves from the situation. A whole bunch of us pooled in our money and time, and even got the story aired on the news, till finally, with much happiness, we welcomed them off the airplane to Montana.
            My friend breathed a sigh as he stood in front of the news cameras and said, “This is the first time in two weeks that I feel safe.”
            I gave him a hug and thought back to the last couple of weeks. Every day I would wake up thinking of all the people affected by the disasters over there, including my friend, and I would feel shaken up. What if it were me in his situation? Or what if something like that happened here in my backyard?
            I have to admit that I’ve been feeling pretty negative about the situation in our world recently. I keep hearing about different kinds of devastations and injustices, and wonder at what kind of place I’m bringing my kids into. Will they have a decent life for themselves? Will they even be safe? It wears me down thinking of the vast amount of things I want to shelter them from. It makes me thankful that our lives seem “safe” and happy for the moment.
            My children’s unappealing antics seem much more playful and endearing when I look at my life from this perspective. Every day since the Japanese earthquake and devastation I’ve found myself looking at both my kids and appreciating them deeply.
            Little Joshua, not so little anymore, but still my Little Boy Blue, is just learning to stand, and loves to crawl over to wherever Celia is so that he can scramble all over her and “wrestle”. Typical younger brother, he seems to be able to take an awful lot of bruising before he cries.
            And my sweetheart Celia, two-and-a-half and already preparing for her next birthday party. I was explaining the Japanese situation, and how my friend’s kids were born in Japan, when I asked Celia, “Do you know where you were born?”
            I’ve told her many times that she was born in Vancouver, Canada. I was curious what she’d say. We’ve been in Montana for half a year now, so maybe she’s starting to think she was born here. But my guess was that she’d say either Vancouver or Canada. Her response surprised me.
            “I was born on the moon!” Celia bounced up and down happily.
            “Really!” I gawked at her. Where do kids come up with these things?
            “Well, my little Moon Child, that explains all sorts of things!” I smiled and picked her up.
            Maybe that’s just the sort of perspective I need to have in all of this. A child’s optimism. Who knows what will happen in this world. The next earthquake or man-made disaster could happen right in my own backyard. But don’t worry. We’re from outer space. We’ll be okay.

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