It’s Gratituesday! I’m grateful today for a sense of security and safety.Early this morning, four a.m. or so, MSH asks, “What’s that sound?”
A sort of low rumbling reverberated through the walls of the house and vibrated just so. I replied, “That’s just a car stereo.”
“Oh, right, of course,” he mumbled in his half-sleep.
“Or,” I said, jokingly, “someone’s doing some bombing not too far off.”
His sleepy non-chuckle left me smiling in my less drowsy state.
I know in many areas of the world that’s not a laughing matter, and more likely than not the disturbing sound that wakes a person isn’t something that someone shrugs off. I recognize, but not always, that I live an incredibly sheltered, safe life in the way-out suburbs of a fairly decent sized city, and I seldom worry about such things.
My sister-in-law and niece are in Kenya volunteering in a medical capacity. When I read “Kenya” in a news headline yesterday, my radar buzzed and hummed and worried. Fortunately they aren’t anywhere near Kenya’s coastal town of Mpeketoni. They’re in Nairobi, an inland city ten hours away. Here’s the thing. Kenya’s coastal towns used to be some of the most stable and secure areas in East Africa. Tourists flocked there with abandon. Do you think that’s changed now? Yeah, me too.
But that’s Africa, is what I want to tell myself. That continent has always been unstable, uncertain, scary. Uh huh.
I can just keep telling myself that. Or I can face reality.
Is it just a matter of time before my safe little pocket of suburbia becomes unstable? Or am I worrying about nothing? Fifteen years ago we boarded planes without a thought about safety or security. Less than twenty years ago, schools seemed like bastions of stability and safety, where we blithely left our children in the care and keeping of school staff. Malls, post offices, movie theaters, buses, cafes, on the road, at work, in your home. All seem safe but haven’t always been for everybody.
I wish, I wish, I wish it were so. Safety, security, peace, lack of fear.
Here’s the thing I find weird about today’s topic. I hesitated posting it. In fact, it’s after eight in the evening and I’m still hanging back.
I don’t want to jinx things. Kind of like praying for patience, you end up having to practice it to get it. I’m not wanting anything like that today. I’m simply grateful that I feel safe, that I live in circumstances where I’m not holding my breath at loud noises, sudden movements, scary things.
I know it can change. Suddenly, irrevocably. But for today, for now, for what I’ve had so far, I’m so aware of how rare and rich and free I feel in my safe little coccoon.