128 Days

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It’s taken a while, but finally I’ve gotten around writing about Hurricane María.

Today it’s been 128 days since María hit Puerto Rico and the same amount of days we were out of power where I live with my family on the west coast.

In the early days after Maria the immediate future seemed dreadful and full of uncertainties. Rumors spread as lethal as an aggressive form of cancer and it was easy to fall into believing mainly because it seemed we had been sucked in by a black hole.

Our banking and communication systems were down. Nothing seemed to work properly.  Things we had taken for granted for so many years now seemed like part of another time, another life.

Being out of power is a “part of your life” kind of thing here due to the precarious state in which our power system was, so emergency power generators are part of the appliances of our households.  However, it’s a totally different thing when you see all that system on the floor, basically broken to the core.

The sensation of “now we’re in deep trouble” creeped up on me and took me to a totally different level of pure undisguised freight.

To remain with  some form of sanity,  I needed to focus on something,  that something would be the countdown for the day finally our power would be restored.

I had been putting down finishing my journal for some time.  Never found the time (which is by the way an excuse) to get it done.  You know what, suddenly I had all the time in the world.

I would devote a complete section of it to Maria.

I made a list from 1 to 26, these would be the weeks projected for our power to be restored, hence our government was saying to us.  Each week began Tuesday and ended on Wednesday, week number one ended on September 27th, an exact week from the hurricane.

Calendar

Finally, my count came to an end on week 18.

Power was restored, we are no longer forcibly off the grid.

Now it’s time to face all the questions without answers,

the trauma of thinking food was becoming scarce as I waited in a line outside a supermarket with a list scribbled on a paper thinking about my elderly parents and a six year old waiting for me at home,

the fact that the roads that give us access to the more urban part of the Island were gone,

the fact that gasoline was not available to move those generators and all the other appliances we had,

all our communication systems (land lines, cellular and internet) were also gonners,

and finally having money in the bank meant nothing because there was absolutely no access to it.

It’s time to heal and to move forward and share a thought or two about all that has happened.

But, that’s for another day.

 

 

 

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Life’s Curve Balls

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Dear readers, sometimes life throws at us a curve ball.  The unexpected happens and leaves us confused and to an extent shocked.

Nonetheless, that pitcher was getting ready all along to make his move. What happened is that player at home didn’t see it coming.

In a sense life is like that sometimes.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We think we’re positioned correctly on that home base,  living flawless lives from our point of view.  However, when those life events come around that don’t match with whatever plans we have in our heads, we are left confused about what to do next.

It’s easy to judge from afar when something happens to people that surround us in a way or two,  but I’ll rather learn from those experiences any given day.

Recently a childhood friend passed and I felt sad about his too soon departure from this world, my daughter pointed out quickly that everything doesn’t have to be a learning experience.

Well, for me it is.  That’s who I am.

Some life lessons are not learned once, but many times through the course of our lives.

Resilience is one of them.  We have to get out of those comfort zones so we can reconnect with things and people who are an important part of our lives. It’s never giving up to whatever circumstance we have in our lives.

It can be loosing your job, facing an accident, or having to deal with loss. As to mention just a few of the multiple things that happen to everyone in exponential terms on this blue ball.

Let’s reach out, learn and love.  It sounds just right out of “Barney”, but it feels darn good to do something good and not be petty about things.  We can’t control life, it just happens.

Next time life throws one of its famous curve balls, instead of being confused let’s hit a one of a kind home-run.

So my dear friends, be good to yourself and to others, recycle to conserve this beautiful planet and find compassion to deal with everything we have to deal with on a daily basis.  Today is here and tomorrow is a surprise, don’t let today just slip away between your fingers, live intentionally.

See you around the corner.

 

 

 

 

Between This and That

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Dear readers, I’ve come to love the words “this” and “that” I think more than I should.  They represent whatever whenever and those my friends are the special moments in life.

For instance, today as we met with Mother Nature in a gathering our church organized we had time to reacquaint with friends, extended family and everyone in between. Most of all, we had time to simply admire the the lazy beauty of this unbothered creek.

With the passing of the day I felt in peace with myself and the world.  I felt my little space of solitude with my personal this and that.

All of us need those unnamed moments that mostly require a minimum of effort and can frequently pass inadvertently.

Tres Pasos Las Marias

Photo credit Francisco J. Quintana

We all want to believe in the best of the human race, but we all know that life is a jungle out there.  If not, tune into Game of Thrones and you’ll get to witness the crudity of violence in its very essence. The worst part is that we crave for it.

Our world each day witness horrors that berate our core making us want to sink in our occidental fantasies that are produced by a few that hold power in our media.

You would think that there is nowhere to turn to, however today the simple passing of the water through the creek contained,  even if just for “that” moment,  the power of healing a brittle soul of a believer that worries maybe to much about a world that spirals out of control with the passing of each and every day.

Within small conversations, human touch and a little bit of laughter today has been a good day.

See you around, thanks for stopping by and find the good within you and share it with someone.

 

2017 KOSTA/USA Conference — Grace Ji-Sun Kim

I am honored to be invited to speak at 2017 KOSTA/USA Conference at North Central College, July 3-7, 2017. There is a good list of seminar speakers and I am excited to be included in this list. I will be speaking on “Asian American Identity” and it will be presented bilingually. I will also share […]

via 2017 KOSTA/USA Conference — Grace Ji-Sun Kim