One of the Christmas gifts I got was a long and touching, if somewhat scary, letter from my cousin's wife, Texas Martha Stewart (to clarify for those of you who don't know: she's a super-crafty homemaker and from Texas originally), that I read on Christmas Day. I had interpreted it as slightly negative and "American" (please don't take offense at this generalization, I mean it as the atmosphere created by your evil president) in sentiment as the entire thing was about how fear would plague my life now that I was to be a mom, and how I'd never be able to watch the news or read the newspaper again without thinking, "What if that was my child?"
I scoffed at it at first. I am a cool, urban leftie after all. I usually regard fear and worry with disdain, dismissing them as commercial propaganda, instituted to make you buy more stuff to make you feel safe. This does not mean that I am not neurotic in my own right, as is evidenced in my blog, but that I feel you can't go around being afraid of everything that might happen or you'll never leave your house.
And then the next day, the unthinkable happened. That insane tsunami hit the Indian Ocean and I immediately had all the feelings she mentioned in her note.
I keep thinking of women that are pregnant for the first time and near-due like me, who might have been thrust into nothingness by the angry ocean and never had the chance to realize the dream of being a mother. I've thought of those who have gone into labour in the midst of those horrible conditions. And then I thought of all the mothers out there, who would gladly give up their lives in such a tragedy if it meant saving their children. Wow. The maternal force is a powerful one. We are amazing creatures and sometimes, though unfortunate, it takes tragedies like this to make us realize that.
And yet I stlll managed to find (innapropriate) humour in the whole thing, by joking about how I'm waiting for a tsunami in my underpants so that I'll finally know if I'm in labour or not. Typical. But seriously, when's the last time you even said tsunami before Sunday? I'm here till Thursday folks! Try the meatloaf.
Anyway, I encourage everyone to give a donation, no matter how small, to one of the aid agencies. Even $20 bucks can add up. And really, who can't spare $20? Skip your Grande non-fat lattes for a week and you have no excuse at all.