One of my facebook friends posted this on the day after Christmas:
"The old/new year period is the perfect time to reflect on what is important in life. It's the time to get rid of what isn't beneficial and make space for new beginnings. It's a time for rest and renewal. A chance to start over with a clean slate."
How true those words ring!
About ten years ago I read a short story about a woman who saved gifts she determined to be "special" - they ended up in drawers and closets and when she passed away her loved ones saw the gifts they had given as they lovingly removed the deceased woman's posessions to send on to other fates. They were sad that she never used or wore the items they had given. Thanks to everyone who has given me a gift this 2013 Christmas. As I prepare to go though another day, already I have donned some of that gay apparel! I felt sadness and a touch of guilt as I opened my presents on Christmas day as I thought about those who have nothing. And then I felt the joy of receiving gifts. What have I done to deserve these things?
For many people in the US hit by an ice storm earlier in the week, and for those brave survivors half a world away in Tacloban, this was a rough Christmas, one I'm certain has given rise to many personal and spiritual awakenings. Which scenario would be the worst Christmas ever? Living a frozen land with no electricity, or living in a tropical paradise decimated by a fierce cyclone with nothing?
One could argue the cold ones could don extra clothing and blankets and gather in places they could build fires. There is no escape from the heat of the Philippines. No home or job to go to. Survivors of Supertyphoon Yolanda, every man. woman and child is an island of sorrow, loss, frustration and hope.
Although news reports there say life in Tacloban is getting back to normal, the fog of uncertainty hasn't lifted for anyone who has yet to hear from friends or family members whom they haven't had contact with since November 8.
Readers, if YOU lost everything - your home -your job - your neighborhood - your earthly posessions including your mobile phone and identification papaers - how long do you reckon it would take YOU to re-enter society?