Will it happen in a shopping mall? Will you have time to run and hide in a bathroom stall when the gunfire begins to sound? Or in some other public place? Will the bullets send you to the ground where you’ll play dead, trying not to tremble, whimper, staying flat on your face…?
What does it feel like to sit in a café and have a piece of lead penetrate your chest and stop your heart? Does the pain start with the breaking bone or the bursting flesh? Do you feel hot or cold…?
If your coworker has a barrel aimed right at her head, would you be so bold as to give up yourself instead? Is she, a mother of three little ones, saved while you lie bleeding out on the polished office floor? …your life rushing out of you on the polished office floor…?
Will your children – husband, wife, mother, father – come walking home through the door today? Or will a police officer knock upon it to say that he is sorry… flashing lights… headlines on the news, and the number of dead includes the person that you love more than anyone….
The modern wonders of the day. The attilas of our generation silent and hidden, dispersed everywhere, anywhere. No hordes descending, no walls and gates to raise to bar them out. Instead, quickly, in an instant, one life suddenly taken, then two, then three. Through history’s eyes, mere firecrackers in a shoe, not much to see. Odds are they won’t get you or yours, there’s no probable danger out-of-doors. And, yet… the questions dart and sneak through your mind like thieves as you pull your arms through the sleeves of your jacket, button the thin fabric up to your chin… and cross the threshold from your home out into the world…
…the world… going mad… like your thoughts…
…but, you will remain sane.
Is it logic or faith that puts one foot in front of the other? Or is it a combination of both that allows you to push aside the door and ignore the time-unlimited question of when, where, how……?
© 2015 Christina Chase
1st photo credit: Life of Pix
2nd photo credit: UNH http://www.unh.edu/health-services/ohep/emotional-health/grief
Although crippled by disease, I am fully alive in love. I write about the profound wonder and terrible beauty of life while living with physical disability and severe dependency. Unafraid to ask life's big questions, I was briefly an atheist and considered other religions before finding, in God's choice to intimately share our humanity, what it truly means to be fully human. A revert to the Catholic Faith, I blog weekly and have written a book called It's Good to Be Here.