20 minutes ago
Sunday, May 02, 2010
The night of January 12th, I slept maybe thirty minutes. I tried to sleep - I was exhausted - but every time I would lie down on the ground, it would move again. I spent a lot of time walking around on the soccer field, talking to people who were likewise sleepless.
At some point I talked to a friend who said that she knew she looked on the outside as though she was all right, but that inside she was screaming and screaming and screaming. She felt that if she started to scream aloud she wouldn't be able to stop.
I felt that way for a long time after the earthquake. I was staying calm for my kids but inside I was screaming. It didn't help that I wasn't sleeping. It didn't help that every day there were more terrible stories and more decisions to make.
I thought about that conversation today because there were thunderstorms much of the day, and the rumble of thunder sounds an awful lot like the way the earthquake sounded when it was just beginning. I didn't panic but I was very alert every time I heard that sound, and I looked around to see how others were reacting, and when they weren't reacting at all, I tried not to react either. I didn't say anything to anyone about what I was thinking. And I didn't have that same interior screaming feeling. I think I have come a long way in the last fifteen weeks.