I have found it hard to blog over the past month. I can't seem to figure what words to put to the screen. The past month has been full of heartache and turmoil for the people of Japan. People have lost their houses, their loved ones, their jobs, their personal belongings, their lives. On March 11, at 2:46 pm, people's lives changed forever. When I sit in front of the screen, everything I want to write seems so insignificant and trite compared to what has happened around me.
There has been hundreds of aftershocks since the 9.0 magnitude earthquake, with the past 24 hours having 68 alone. Almost a 1/4 of these 68 have been 5.5 magnitude and above. There seems to be a sense of nervousness every time an aftershock hits. Add to it the unstable nuclear situation and I think many people seem to be walking around waiting for the "other shoe to drop". Kobe is far away from both the Tohoku and Fukushima regions, but I still think people are anxious about the "what's next" or "what could be next." I know many of my expat friends worry about something happening here or what the future may hold. To be honest, I do too.
But life still goes on. People get up in the morning and go to work. Some meet friends for coffee, while others play with their children. If there is one thing I learned on my trip to the Tohoku region it was how much strength and grace the victims showed. They are perfect examples of no matter how grim and bleak a situation may be, life goes on. It has to. I think learning how to put one foot forward, no matter the circumstance, is part of the healing process.
This past Sunday, Matt and I walked around Kobe to see the beautiful cherry blossoms. Sakura season is famous in Japan. People come from all over just to admire the cherry blossom trees. I found it to be a very peaceful and cleaning afternoon.
We can either live in fear about what tomorrow may bring or we can live each day to the fullest because we never know what the future may hold. One of my favorite musicals, Rent, has a song that really says it all:
"Forget regret -- or life is yours to miss.
No other road, no other way
No day but today."