If there is one thing I have learned from the events of the past week, it is that the rhythms of the mundane are unbearably brittle. They falter and dissolve into chaos suddenly, in the crack of concrete, the seep of water under the door.
I would add to that, that it is incredibly difficult to simply go to school and go to work as if nothing happened. And returning to routine is perhaps even more difficult after a summer spent languishing in the very things that people on the Gulf Coast are missing--family, friends, comfort, good food, peace. I packed the kids up for their first day of school, took photos at the bus stop, but part of me felt empty, sad, angry, like something had been forever lost.
At work, people wanted to talk about it. After finally catching up on everything, and with much more news coming out over the weekend, we wanted to talk about why. We wanted to share our anger, our fear. We wanted to connect with other human beings. It was hard to do the mundane tasks you know had to be done. And then in class, I faced a group of 18 year olds, who were only 14 when 9/11 hit and now this, and they felt at sea--away from family and friends and having to cope with this disaster with new friends. And some of them have had their faith in government shaken. Some are as angry as I; many may be scared.
So, yes, I am trying to piece my routine back together, but the fabric of my life feels frayed. I had not realized how much comfort I placed in knowing that dinner is at 6, the kids are in bed by 9 and then we sleep and the whole thing starts over again. But my routine is not completely the same. I am walking when I can. Geeky Girl and I walked to the drugstore this evening for last-minute school supplies. Like Scrivener, I am stocking up on supplies. Probably won't help, but it makes me feel better for some reason. I spent yesterday gathering clothes and toys to send to Houston. I look around at all we have and I am embarrassed. I remember days of scraping by and now there are piles of stuff everywhere. I am trying to find a way to pass on useful things to people who might need them. I know I can't curb the buying or the presents, but I can give away our clothes, our toys. How horrible to be burdened with too much stuff.
Mundane blogging will return eventually. Maybe after we get rid of the bozos running our country.