yesterday, i had uninterrupted time with meg in the car. there was traffic. so, more time. funny how even after more than a year in lockdown + pandemic living, there is still need for uninterrupted time with one another…
i wanted to talk with her about the IPCC report that had come out yesterday morning and the news about our planet and our unhealthy relationship with her. i wanted to talk with her because i know silence about these things–about REALITY–hurts more than the REALITY. because whether we talk about REALITY or not, it is REAL.
our talk went something like this:
me: “we got some news today on the health of mother earth and climate change.”
meg: turns to the window. (i’ll not assume there was eye rolling…)
me: “it’s serious. humans are impacting the earth because we keep taking and taking and taking from her. like the fossil fuels we are using are creating carbon dioxide that is getting trapped in the ozone layer and making our temperature raise, like a fever. fossil fuels like…”
meg: “oil, gas…”
me: “and we have to use different kinds of energy…”
meg: “like wind, solar…”
me: “yes. and find new ways of living in relationship with our planet. it’s like we’re in an abusive relationship with her and we are the abusers.”
meg: “and that’s why so many fish and sealife are being killed…”
me: “yes. we are all being harmed because of the abuse. humans, too.”
meg: “president biden better step up.”
me: “we all better. it’s all of our responsibility. what can we do?”
i pause here, remembering a conversation i had like this with thomas a while back, just as greta showed up in righteous indignation at the U.N. my then sixteen year-old son was enraged at this question when i asked him, pointing out that the “we” in “what can we do?” has to first acknowledge that many generations have done harm and in fact, are responsible for the situation we find ourselves in.
i add, “because for too long, me and my generation and those before, have been so interested in profit, that we’ve chosen profit and comfort over paying attention to the harm we were creating to the earth.”
the sadness of this reality enters, as i consider the impact of this news on my baby’s life. the life of all my children and grandchildren. the lives of all future generations.
one of us notices that we are sitting in traffic. the moment, offering possibilities. what if we begin carpooling? get an electric car? localize our efforts so that we can walk…
being present in and with reality is…holy. it is heartwrenching and feels impossible at times. the vastness of it, overwhelming. and, somehow, it also reveals that we are not alone. ever. in the face of such devastating news, a miraculous revelation: we are together.
reality is revealing herself to us each moment. do we dare–care–to be there, allowing more and more of reality to touch us? to be intimate with Life? do we dare–care–to awaken to all that is so that we might enter that dance and join in the creation story, playing our unique part?