Earthquakes are funny things. Having lived through only a couple aftershocks (long ago during a trip to California), and a very small one here last year (certainly nothing as strong as what I felt today) I was humbled by the experience. I was also terrified, and found myself wishing I kept a bottle of vodka in my desk drawer.
It is good to be reminded of how insignificant we really are in the grand scheme of life. I spend an inordinate amount of my day worrying about all kinds of things including, but not limited to, how white the grout is in my bathroom, whether or not my daughter remembered to close her dresser drawers before leaving for the day, and whether either or both of the dogs will pee on the floor while I am gone. I spend countless hours obsessing about work, making it to the gym, if my jeans are fitting a little more snugly, or if the neighbors really do hate us because we have lousy landscaping. It is truly amazing the amount of senseless junk we clutter our minds with on any given day. I’m guilty, you are guilty, we are all guilty. Sometimes it takes an event to “shake things up” and give you some perspective.
From now on, I believe I will spend my time filling my pint-sized brain with more pleasing, and lovelier thoughts. I will spend more time marvelling at the color of my daughter’s eyes, and how she has the most magnificent head of hair that she doesn’t appreciate, or brush. I will remember to always say “please” and “thank you” and “how can I help?”. I will spend more time laughing and less time bitching about things that really just don’t matter, like the condition of the basement, or how many lights are on in the house. I am thankful for my life, as well as everything and everyone in it. I have all that I require, and I am blessed in so many ways I cannot even count them all.
In the end, its fifteen minutes at a time, and that is exactly what we have the right to expect any given moment. It’s good to be reminded that the world is fragile, and so are we. Hug your kids, remember to tell your spouse and your family members that you love them, and that they count. The worst feeling in the world is knowing you should have, but you didn’t.