Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Did You Feel That?

That seems to have been the QOTD (Question Of The Day) yesterday, here on the east coast.  Yes, I did.


I was not feeling well yesterday.  I had started my walking regime on the previous Monday.  I wanted to ease back into it since I had not been walking daily for years.  I used to be a very avid walker -- power walker, even.  It is finally time to start again.  So I chose Monday.  It was cool, and clear and simply gorgeous out.  A perfect day to start.


I ended up walking two miles - in 40 minutes.  Not bad for a first try.  I took it slow, but since there are paths in my area to walk, I decided to go that route.  It's a bit more of a workout, since they are uphill in the direction I went.  It's really pretty, surrounded by trees and very woodsy.  I looked around and thought how amazing it is going to look in a few months with the leaves changing colors.  I got home and while I worked up a good sweat, I felt great. 


Until I sat on my bed.  Instant headache.  I figured I was dehydrated (forgot Golden Rule #1 of walking:  Take water), and had some water.  LONG story short, it was not a normal headache.  Areas of the back of my head, the top of my head and my eyes hurt - intermittently.  Because I have high blood pressure and there is a history of aneurisms in my family, I got a bit nervous.   So when I still had the pain on Tuesday, I wasn't waiting around.  I decided to go to the ER.  I waited for my husband to come get me.  That is when the quake started.


I was in my bedroom getting dressed.  Now, we have very noisy neighbors that live directly above me.  They steam-clean their own carpeting bi-weekly.  It's loud.  I figured she was at it, again.  But it kept getting louder.  I actually said out loud (to nobody -  Alex was across the street at his buddies' place and Aaron was asleep in his room),


"What the Hell are you doing up there!?"  And it just kept getting louder and louder -- a roaring.  Then the shaking started.  I heard my shelf of nail polishes (I have over 100 bottles) clinking together.  All the photos on the wall shook.  Then the walls started -- well , moving.  But they were going in opposite directions (which means my apartment building was built with the possibility that an earthquake could happen, I've been told by a number of folks) of  each other, all while the shaking and that God-awful loud roaring was going on.  Then the floor started what looked to be like rolling;  like waves.  What is even scarier is the fact that I did nothing.  I stood there like a deer in headlights saying,
"omigodomigodOMIGODOMIGOD!"
This is not cool when you are a mother.  I'll say that I failed my first true 'What To Do In An Earthquake" test, miserably.   Lesson learned, the hard way.


I finally ran out of my room, nearly falling and bumping into a very sleepy Aaron who really didn't comprehend what was happening.  He isn't the cheeriest of fellows when he is awakened in any form, so he sort of brushed me off.  I turned to find my husband standing in the doorway.


"What the Hell is that!?"  He said to me as I made my way to him.  By now, it had just ended.  I admit, I was in panic mode.  We both went outside and a few people were coming out, saying "Earthquake!"   My son Alex called me.  He was very cool about it, and after I made sure he was okay and double made sure that they were BOTH okay, felt good about that and let him hang up.


We turned on CNN and already they were covering it.  Rob turned his laptop on and got the USGS (his favorite website even before yesterday's events).  I felt terrible. I felt terrible because, well, I felt terrible and because Rob LIVES for this kind of stuff, and I had to drag him away so I could be seen in the ER. (I'll leave that part out, but just FYI:  I'm FINE.  Seems I am too stressed out.  Gee ya THINK!? I think, though, had we not had the quake, I would have gotten the same diagnosis:  A Stress Headache.  I got to the ER at 2:25 and got home around 11 p.m. The ER was filled with patients puking everywhere, and one that had the staff wearing space suits -- I'm betting that would be the one that had Bacterial Meningitis --  a drunk that decided to pull out his IV right in front of me and leave "AMA", and who had half of HOCO's finest out looking for him,  and finally,  a very belligerent gunshot victim with the other half of HOCO's finest trying to cuff him to a gurney -- yes;  it was a long and  stressful day)


And so here we are, almost a day later.  We are very lucky.  It could have been much worse.  I knew within moments after getting to the hospital that Facebook would be swimming with comments, and I concur, I posted three prior to leaving.  Got a chuckle out of a few posts.  Then the political jabs began.  Ignored those.  I also ignored the comments made by folks on the west coast.  Not family and friends, though.  I have a cousin who has lived in LA for years, and during her visit here in MD admitted,
"This might have been the biggest one I've ever felt, and I live in LA. Go figure. Hope everyone is safe".
Another cousin that lives in Alameda said that they had a 3.9 quake last night.  I told her, 
"Wow. First time I can say ours was bigger than yours!! Glad you all are okay!"

California is a great place to visit, I'm sure, but you couldn't pay me to live there.  This earthquake was enough, thank you very much, and yes, I'm sure ours was laughable compared to what they have.  Oh well.   I have my own theories about why I won't live there.  I'll keep them to myself, for now.  

Rob and I started talking bout how nowadays, people fly to their computers, us included, and post when important or emergent things occur.  Cell phone usage was just not possible for a span of time yesterday, so I guess I'm grateful that Facebook is there.  What a world we live in, huh?  Which brings me to why I am writing this.
(You know, I am really getting tired of saying why I write about things.  I may post about that and then never justify why ever again.)


  -- and pardon me -- just flicked four Stink Bugs off of my bedroom window screen.  Anyway...


We lived through a historical event, yesterday.  Here in Columbia, MD, we have had a few minor quakes in the 18 years we have lived here.  Alex felt the last one just last year getting ready for school.  It was one of those quakes Maryland gets where we say, 


"What was that?  Was that an earthquake?"  A tiny one.  Not even water-cooler worthy.


An event like this makes me appreciate things that we take for granted.  I am humbled and in awe of just how powerful our planet is.  What it is capable of.  Sure, it frightens me, but to a point, I am left to wonder.  Like my friend Donna said,


"Our earth really is incredibly active; one realizes from the USGS site."
Boy, is she right.  I think about all the quakes that are happening on a daily basis and wonder how we stay... stable!  I suppose we don't, we just can't feel it.  Yeah, our planet is crazy-amazing.


So, today, I am reflecting.  On my planet and how precious it is.  How strong, yet so seriously sensitive and fragile it is.  I am reflecting on many things, today.  How lucky I am.

If I chose to rock my world,  I need to remember that it can rock  me right back.. 


Until next time,


Peace, and thanks for reading.

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