Tuesday, November 6, 2012

No Reason to Cry

I have no reason to cry. My home is unscathed, the damage to my property minimal, and my family and friends are doing fine. I have no reason to cry, yet I broke down on the train platform yesterday, standing among a thousand New Jerseyans as we tried to get to work, and again this morning in front of my children as they colored quietly in the cold.

I am heavy. There is sadness for my state, for the people who have lost so much. There is frustration at, with, and for the people who are still without power. There is compassion for the utility workers and government officials who, I truly believe, are doing the best they can in an impossible situation - and who are being criticized vehemently by those without power.

There are all these emotions bottled up, yet it was work that tipped me twice in the last 24 hrs. Yesterday, the commute seemed insurmountable. Today, a glitch in my university's plan for Gmail migration has made my life increasingly complicated. I am trying to take each challenge in stride. And it is making me feel heavy.

One of my students sent an apologetic email, saying she might not be prepared for class tomorrow. She has had only a few hours of Internet access to catch up on a week's worth of work. It's impossible to do it all in so little time, she said. I know how she feels. So much of what we do in our professional lives depends on access. I have been working for some time to fight the "digital divide." I am now on the other side of that divide, and it's making me heavy. I am starting to truly understand the ramifications of living without the tools of digital literacy, digital citizenship, digital life.

I know that some readers have been concerned by my posts. I want to assure everyone that I am ok. Writing is therapy in some ways, and I know that others in my community have expressed that my sharing has helped them too. So I'm continuing to write and share, not to ask for sympathy, but to reaffirm for myself and my neighbors that we really don't have a reason to cry. But it's ok if we do. I know we are all a little heavy right now.


  1. Totally true - I burst into tears on Saturday AM, it all just got to me. I say again, come on by, we are lighting a fire every night to keep it nice and comforting.

  2. Kristen, I am not even there nor am I physically effected by the storm, but I cannot help but cry watching the news, reading facebook and emails and texts from all of you out East. I feel so heavy of heart, kind of a survivors guilt. I was there last year during and after Irene, but was able to help others. Now I just don't know what to do or how I can help in a really meaningful way. Thank you for sharing your feelings and for letting me express mine xoxoxo