This week has left behind it a wake of fear.
The world woke up to the news of the Vegas massacre on Monday morning. That’s what they’re calling it. A massacre. And it was. 59 and counting men, women and children, gone in the blink of an eye. Senseless and way too much to bear. It has left us all devastated, terrified, holding our breath..
I had some friends in town over the weekend. They were telling me about the Ken Burns documentary, The Vietnam War. I was reminded that it’s always been a shit show here, here on planet Earth. That the terror of our time isn’t unique to our time.
As I’ve flailed around these last few days, desperate attempts to find something meaningful in this mess of a mess, all I can say is that no one ever said it would be easy here.
And that sucks.
Because I'm tired. And my friends are tired. We are sad and we are deeply affected by the suffering in our world. And what sucks is that if there was ever anything promised to us, it's that. It's suffering. We will suffer. That's, like, our one guarantee. Great.
Obviously I'm not here to offer a silver lining. But I have been wondering for a while now if being fully alive means holding the beauty and the suffering, the terror. And I want to be fully alive to it all, no matter how painful. Because, why the hell else are we here?
No feeling is final. Good, because I am heartbroken. And I'm also hopeful. Because I know that fear won't have the final say. And that we do keep going: we rise to the occasion, out of the ashes, pulling victims into our cars to take them to the hospital when there aren't enough ambulances, filling cargo planes full of supplies, standing in line for 5 hours to give blood. And that that is beautiful. Enormously so.
And that that is who we are.
Friend, listen to me: that is who you are.