Sunday, August 31, 2008

All Talk

The world has stopped as far as I am concerned right now. It has one name – Gustav.

My life began to make drastic changes three years ago. Katrina helped me define some of those changes.

I, as did the rest of the world, sat mesmerized by the horror that was unfolding along the Gulf coastline of Mississippi and Louisiana. Lots of unresolved issues lying quietly under the surface just waiting for the right moment to rise. I felt so inept, so useless. I wanted so strongly to DO something.

I never did enough to amount to anything. The empty feeling of doing nothing lives inside of me. Gustav is waking it up.

I am reading everything that I can read about Gustav’s path. The reports from Haiti and the Dominican Republic differ drastically from the 60+ reported dead by our US reports. Photos of the dead bodies are being taken for later identification and the bodies are then dumped into a mass grave because decomposition is happening so rapidly in the hot and humid conditions. The Guardian reports that there could be as many as 1000 dead in the Haitian town of Mapou and in Jimani (Dominican Republic) 350 dead bodies have been found with 400 people still missing.

Bishop Charles Jenkins wrote on his blog last night – his pain and unresolved “brokenness ” is evident.

This … thing…is affecting me so strongly…what affect is it having on those who lived through it…who had family who lived…or didn’t live…through it?

What difference does any of the rest of this crap we argue about matter?

What difference does it make? If all we are going to do is the same old stuff all over again, what difference does it make?

If we are defined by our actions rather than our words, what good is all of this?


Lauralew said...

Powerful post, Barbi, and good questions. Most people don't have the time to fight over anything--they just have enough time to work to make a living and keep moving one foot in front of the other. Like most of the people the freaking talking head class say should all have left NOLA. Who has time to ponder all of that when you are trying to feed your family?

Effects on me--I've been much more intentional about following up on my friends that live on the Gulf Coast than I was during Katrina. I lost track of several during Katrina and one I've never found--I know she survived but she and her family moved away. And Katrina directly led to a situation in my family in which my Mississippi based brother lost his home in one of the follow on tornados so moved his family in with my elderly parents in Missouri.

Thanks for this. Peace be with you.

Lindy said...

Barbi, I've lost your email address! You can email me directly at hannukahlinda at gmail dot com.

Good post btw. I have my own thoughts about it, many of which include the words "Beaumont" and "Rita."

Anyway, email me so I can email you!