My blog is piling up with drafts that will never see the light of publishing day. My Laborious Weekend post was actually cut short because of a last-minute shopping trip with my mom to Target, and on the way there she got the very sad news that her mother died that morning. Since my grandma is in a province in the Philippines, she got the news via a text message on her cellphone. I don't know if that's worse than when I found out about my dad's passing away from messages in my answering machine, but I'm sure it's no less devastating. We turned the car around and headed to our church to pray, but it was closed due to the Labor Day holiday. So we just went home and she started making the dreadful calls.
Another event that made the whole world cold and prompted me to begin another draft was the tragedy in the Russian school seized by a group of terrorists who held hundreds of children and some parents hostage. The footage of the day-to-day events of this crisis was chilling, the newspaper accounts horrifying.
Yet another draft I started was about the anniversary of September 11, surely a cold day in our nation's history. I found myself deleting more words than I wrote, that I finally gave up any hope of an articulate output from these attempts.
Why can't I finish these posts? Because I am a cold, insensitive being.
I did get sad for all these events, but they did not touch me as I think they should have. I felt bad that my mom went back home to the Philippines without seeing me shed a single tear for my grandma, whom I knew but wasn't close to. But I didn't want to fake it.
I remember when I was younger and wanted to cry, either to elicit sympathy from adults or because it was expected of me somehow, I would shut my eyes hard and think of the saddest thing that could ever happen to me. Most of the time, I morbidly thought of my mom dying, and that almost always did the trick. This time, I didn't dare use that trick to make myself sad for grandma's passing, it is just too scary to imagine.
As for the Russian crisis, I was detached from it the whole time. I did watch the news, read the papers and felt so sorry for the kids, but it was just another unfortunate event in the other side of the world for me. It didn't affect me as much as September 11, 2001. Three years ago I cried at every news story, prayed all the time, held my loved ones closer, thought a lot about my own mortality.
I was a warm, sensitive soul back then.