Friday, September 24, 2010

Now It Can Be Told

My husband was away this week. He left on Monday morning and got back this afternoon. I didn't want to blog about this fact because I didn't want to advertise online that I was home alone.

This is pretty absurd. For one thing, I was hardly home alone. I won't list all the members of my household, but there are quite a few other people who live there all the time. But secondly, I don't think the local criminals go online to check out blogs and Facebook before deciding whom to rob and whom to kidnap. (Although in other, more dangerous places, such as New Albany, Indiana, this does apparently happen.) It's a lot more likely in my neighborhood that criminals would watch me coming and going and realize that my husband wasn't with me as he usually is. Call it low-tech crime, but it works for them.

I was actually concerned not so much that I would be a victim of crime, but that everything in the house would break as soon as my husband was out of sight. This is an international problem, reported by many of my friends around the world. Usually at our house the electricity will stop working. This time several things were out of order before he ever left on his trip, and our fridge was actually returned during this week, now fixed.

The main reason that this trip felt like a big hurdle to me was that this was the first time I have been in Haiti without my husband since the earthquake. His last international trip before the quake was at the end of November, and on the night of January 12th I kept thinking, What if this had happened while he was out of the country? He was so calm and seemed to know what to do, and his calmness helped all of us, in our family and at our school, feel that everything was going to be OK. I worried that while he was gone this time, something might happen and that I wouldn't be able to cope. I doubt my ability to cope with things these days, because on the night of January 12th, I caught a glimpse of how far beyond me circumstances can go.

He hadn't been gone 24 hours before there was an aftershock, but it was only a 4.4, and I slept through it. I dealt with the other minor crises that came up without too much difficulty. And I know that any trips he takes after this will not seem so overwhelming. The first time is always the hardest.

I am glad to have my husband back. I don't take his presence for granted any more.

No comments: