Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A Day in the Life

I work in the yard to clear my head. As soon as I saw the sunny skies of Austin this morning, I began to plan to immerse myself in fallen leaves, fresh hedge clippings, and flats of petunias. The therapeutic value of this work to my soul far exceeds the ache in my back that will linger over the next few days. There's so much about digging and planting and even pulling weeds that nurtures thoughts of the Creator and the Created. I couldn't wait for the temperature to move past 60. As I pulled on my yard shoes, I began to wonder what my counterparts in the countries I think about so often would do with a bright and sunny day. Would they head with a hoe to the lawn? And so I came back to the desk. First I checked the weather reports: a little cold in Afghanistan, but good gardening weather in Iraq and Israel. Then I began searching for images of homes and lawns in Baghdad, Gaza, Sderot, and Kabul. All I want to do now is crawl back into bed, close the blinds, pull up the covers, cry, and pray. It's not that the photos are all that terrible. Certainly, I have not found pictures that remind me of Texas suburbia - but I didn't expect to. The disabling pieces of my search for photos from these locales are not the images, but the stories that come with the images. I have read real-life, in-the-present-moment accounts from soldiers and students and mothers and fathers and reporters. All fighting, working, living, and best they can... in war-torn towns with war-ravaged neighborhoods. So my bubble of imagining a life just like mine in the Middle East has burst. There is very little chance that yard work tops the list of things to do today for folks in Iraq, Israel, or Afghanistan. Unless it is to tenderly care for the grave of a loved one.
Baghdad Gaza
May our insularity be ever on our minds as we go about our easy lives. Peace.

1 comment:

gay said...

Thanks for the reminder, we have been so consumed with our own woes that we forget others suffer far worse.