In the middle of last night, I was awake and listening. A plane flew overhead and it sounded so loud. Why was it so loud? Was it the way the clouds were structured at that moment in time? Night fog? Low, thick rain clouds?
The airplane engines sounded scary and foreboding. Like it was the beginning of the end of the world as I know it. This is how so much of the last year has felt. I go online and the news jumps out at me. Lately it’s all the news of sexual assault. It feels like we are encircled in chaos, with the truth breaking into the light. But so much of it reminds me of what it’s like to be afraid. To have experiences that make you feel fearful of what’s around every corner. The experience of walking a city block with wary eyes, thinking in the next few seconds something is coming for you.
Ah, this is not the world I want to live within. But this is what the news reminds me of: the world we do live in, people getting away with sexual assault for decades. The truth is it all makes me tired, the ache of the hurt of all the people wronged by people with power over them.
There’s hope in there too: the hope that right now a tidal wave of change is washing over us. That there will be real repercussions for the people who sexually assault others. Saying #metoo gives us some power even if it also makes us remember the scarring taste of fear, how it can live in our bodies and make the outside world feel so unsafe.
The sound of that plane in the middle of the night reminded me of what it feels like to be ruled by fear. Oh fear, I want us all to step in and through that feeling until we hit the light of truth. It sounds so poetic. It is so hard. Still, it’s good to remember that the morning light after a dark, scary night has some comfort in it, too.