Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Tales from the Vault - The Rock

Tales from the Vault is a feature where I bring back some of my favourite posts from the archived blog. All text from the original posts has been left completely unedited; however, where I think context is required it's been added.

In light of our earthquake last night, I was reminded of this post I originally wrote in October 2013. The funny thing is, this actual earthquake happened exactly at the time I have imaged a hundred earthquakes before - while lying in bed trying to fall asleep.  Although this was the strongest quake I have felt, we are all totally fine. It did serve as a stark reminder a long overdue revisit of the earthquake safety plan is required.


We live on a rock. A big, old rock in the Pacific Ocean - better known as Vancouver Island. Most of the time it's great living on an island. That is, until I think about "the big one" coming and our island seems awfully small and - for lack of a better word - delicate.

If I listen to the people who are very smart about those kinds of things, they tell me that an earthquake is coming imminently. Not just any earthquake - the be all end all kind of earthquake that's going to leave Vancouver Island as scraps on the ocean floor. Gulp. Not a good visual.

We have little quakes here all the time that generally go unnoticed. I'll read the status updates on facebook and be glad that yet again, I didn't feel it. Thank goodness, because I feel fake earthquakes all the time. Lying in bed at night is the worst. You know that state where you're almost asleep so you're totally out of it, yet still awake at the same time? Well never fail if Jordan moves the wrong way and shakes the bed even just a little bit, I sit straight up in terror. I'm sure it's a pre-shock.

Wait, what? There's no such thing as a pre-shock? That's why earthquakes are so devastating - because they give you no warning whatsoever? Clearly I'm thinking of an after-shock. Oh great, now I'm even more worried than before. Thanks a lot.

So I try not to listen to those very smart people who know about earthquakes. It's not that I don't believe them and know the danger that it entails, it's that giving it too much thought makes me nervous. Morbidly, irrationally nervous.

And I know an earthquake is terrifying for anyone, let alone those of us that live along a major fault line. But you know what is especially terrifying? An earthquake (or any disaster for that matter) that could trap your child.

Ok ya, you get that worry too? Fair enough. But here's the kicker: how about a disaster that could trap your child that can't move himself? That invokes full on terror in me.

So in an effort to feel a bit of control over the situation, every few months we discuss our safety plan with Rio - fire, earthquake, whatever - how we protect ourselves, what we do, and where we go. And every time, after Rio has given us all of the appropriate answers, she finishes with the question: What about Asher?

Her question breaks my heart. Not only because I hate that she too has that worry, but because I really don't know. What about Asher? What if he is trapped somewhere that you can only crawl out of because of so much rubble? What if the only escape is climbing up and out through a window? What if it's as simple as needing to hide under the bed to keep himself protected? He can't do any of those things himself and that scares the living *beep* out of me. My sister assures me Nolan will grab him by the ankles and haul him out of anywhere, but I can't be sure.

So, because I already have enough to worry about, I just don't think about it. I know that we have a safety plan in place and I need to have confidence that we will get Asher (and the other two for that matter) out of any sort of disastrous situation.

And in the mean time, I hope and pray that this rock we call home remains stable and in its place for a few more million years.

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