Here in sunny Southern California, it’s a beautiful sunny day. Actually, it’s been lovely and sunny for the last few days, and although the grassy knoll in front of my patio is soaked through, the sun will quickly see that the grass areas, the bushels, the shrubs and all the trees will soon take to drying. And for what? Useless. There is a storm coming Saturday, Sunday and Monday, as brutal as Californians are prone to believe. Of course, none of our storms are any measure comparable to back east, or the southern states. But for us, it is pretty awesome and a bit frightening; we are just not used to major upheaval. Which segues into my true thoughts.
I’m thinking about major upheavals when everything seems calm and lovely. I am thinking about disaster when nothing seems awry, and all seems so beautiful peaceful. I suppose it is because of the book I read, well….two books to be exact. Well, probably more than that. I am after all, a melancholic heart. And no, I’m not bipolar or schizophrenic, I am simply a very hypersensitive soul. Nothing wrong with that, except around those who don’t even have a soul.
But, getting back to my original thoughts, the novel (a short one at that, may even be called a novelette) of about 246 pages, awoke me back to reality. You see, when things are bright and cheery (like that sun) it can be a ruse; it can be a cloak over the true reality, that the world is a dangerous place, that Mother Nature isn’t as sweet as everyone would like to believe; that Mother Nature enjoys a brief break from what we think is reality and pulls a fast one, like a Tsunami. That is what happened to Somali Deraniyagala, the author of her book, “Wave.”
Now I know there are many stories about Tsunamis, about treaturous ties, storms, mudslides, string accidents, and to include, I must; murders and suicides. All of this is the reality no one wants to face. But it’s there. So Sonali reminds me once again, what it looks like to have a seemingly perfect life, and how it seems at times we do not feel the gratitude we ought.
And then our life shifts before our eyes and we are in a different reality. It’s still reality, but it complexly 180 degrees from what we knew. And it is like starting over in such a way that we try to wiggle our way out but we cannot. We must eventually accept the changes. And that is quite painful and sometimes takes years. This is what her story tells me; it took her years, she went through much rebellion toward this new reality, she tried to erase herself from it. Nothing worked. Eventually, she accepted it with some kind of negotiable end; she visits her past reality now and then, by imagining what it would be if it had continued. I cannot fathom the critical catastrophe she experienced and I don’t want to. Yet, who can say what can happen?
So why am I bringing this melancholic discussion at all? Because. I want to remind myself the urgent need to ALWAYS have gratitude for EVEYTHING. I sometimes want to throw my husband off the highest cliff, wheelchair and all. But then I remember what we had when we first met. I think about his mother who died not being able to have the surety of her son’s well-being after his terrible ordeal. I think about his son, who needs to chat with him often.
No, I am not being funny, although there are constant jokes about spouses killing each other. Statistics show how often spouses do kill each other, as well as their children. Such horrid reality. Do we think about sometimes getting away from our spouses, children, parents? Bumping them off, so we can be free of our responsibilities as we were when we were children? You needn’t tell me, but you do need to see the reality of it. Further, because many people Do feel this way, and since they cannot get away with such a thing (maybe they still have a conscience?) instead they hurt animals. Don’t lie, I work in a room with a very big window to look out at. Sometimes I see people being pretty hostile with their dogs while walking them. I shudder to think what people really do in secret, in their homes, in spaces between them and their charges. But look; look deeply into your own heart, look into your mind and tell yourself the truth. And then imagine all those gone, who you believe to stand in your way. Imagine them gone in a n instant, and then imagine what will you do? And you will find that those selfish, self-seeking feelings are still there. And you will find that you lost everything and had not realized how much those around you–including your pets–meant so much to the comfort and joy of your life. It was YOU who was the sinner, the cruel soul, the dark shadow of your life. You will realize that your reality is not half as bad as someone like, say…Sonali. Sure she’s built her life back up after about 8 years or so. But those wounds on her soul will always be there. She didn’t bring it on either; Mother Nature lied and made her family believe their vacation would be beautiful and safe; Mother Nature lied–she’s not as wonderful as we all think. God forbid you are caught in Mother Nature’s mischievous side, her dark side and uncaringly murders a multitude of souls for fun. It can happen to anyone; in a tsunami, in a car accident, in a fire, in heart attacks, strokes, suffocation, trips and falls. But it can happen, and my biggest point here is to be satisfied with your lot in life. Love the ones you are with, even if you are all homeless, be kind, be grateful, be God-like. We we made in the image of God. Mother Nature was made to keep consistency on earth, but she flares every so often, then returns to her subservient position, obeying God’s rule of consistency. Okay, I’m a bit dramatic.. I’m a writer what do you expect? But seriously, take heart in hand and hold those close who you love. Be grateful you are even alive, it could be you that disappears.
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