After the day’s folderol has wound down, it’s time to relax.
Planted habitually on the left side of the couch, my wife places on herself an animal-print blanket she sewed, and the then places on said animal-print blanket three animals: two cats and a dog. I sit on the other side of the sofa and we watch TV, check out a movie, read, or – gasp! – possibly even talk to each other.
If you’re looking for wild parties, we’re not the go-to place. I’m not sure we ever were, but for a fact, I know we’re not now. We’re not exciting – and that’s the way we like it.
Recently, our pattern was most literally shaken up when the ground began trembling.
If you live in earthquake country, you know what comes next. If you don’t, there’s a mental and emotional checklist one goes through at the first inkling of a temblor.
1) Look for others nearby and check their reactions to decide if you’re just dizzy or disoriented, or to get validation that the movement beneath your feet is actually happening.
2) Determine if a large vehicle is rumbling down your street vibrating the entire neighborhood.
3) Check to see if hanging objects are swinging.
4) If indeed you are neither inebriated nor are tanks or eighteen-wheelers patrolling your street, and your favorite dangling knick-knack is making like a pendulum; then commence praying that this now verified earthquake will not be the “Big One.”
5) Feel fear rise up in your throat. Decide if you’re heading for safety. Wait for quake to pass. Realize how powerless you are in the grasp of Mother Nature.
Steps one through four pass blindingly fast.
Number five, however, causes time to crawl, even through most quakes (thankfully) last less than a minute.
Such was the case Sunday night, when according to press reports,
“One of the largest earthquakes to hit California in decades rattled the state’s northern coast.”
We were fortunate. A picture fell from the wall, cabinets flopped open, and our wireless router leapt from its shelf. That was it. We were shaken, quite literally, but aside from a nearby home alarm blaring; there was no major reminder of what just rumbled through our lives when the quaking ceased. Apparently, such was the case for our county.
We were blessed twice.
I do know we need to do more in the area of emergency preparedness but, alas, the veil of denial is thick. We’ll get to it “tomorrow.” We do have cash stored, emergency kits, canned food, and a plan on whom to call if we’re separated.
We didn’t need any of those. Label me three times lucky.
I forget that.
Sometimes, when the dryer breaks down; or the price of gas crosses four bucks; or I can’t eat as many sugary, doughy carbs as I’d really like; I get cranky. I’m not proud of it; it’s just what I do. My inner cranky child stomps his feet and kvetches, “Aw, ain’t life awful?”
I need a reminder that at least I have a roof over my head, even if the dryer won’t do its thing. Most likely, I drive my car (with overly-expensive fuel) on streets where some must spend their nights. While I’m saying “nay” to the super-size, others beg for what I throw away. As I write this, over 200 families are waiting to hear what happened to their loved ones on a flight from Malaysia and today, an explosion took out a building in New York City.
Yet, I remain safe and sound. With so much that could go wrong, it doesn’t. We are far more fortunate far more often than we realize.
Once in awhile, we need to shake up the way we think.
About the author: Scott “Q” Marcus is a nationally known weight loss expert for baby boomers and the CRP (Chief Recovering Perfectionist) of www.ThisTimeIMeanIt.com Get his free ebook of motivational quotations and one year of his highly-popular Monday Motivational Memos at no charge by visiting his website. He is also available for coaching and speaking at 707.442.6243.