View From Table 9

April 22, 2007

On Randomness

Filed under: articles — table9 @ 3:46 pm

Al Lubriano makes an excellent point in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer on randomness and the fabric of society, in light of all the post-VA Tech shooting recriminations.  As much as we say things could have/should have/will be done differently, life has a seeming randomness that is not preventable or predictible.

I would have to say I am of the belief that everything happens for a reason, even if it’s not readily apparent what that is. Even the bad stuff.

Also that yeah, there are silver linings, even in the midst of great tragedy, there have to be. Acknowledging, accepting, even celebrating those grains of silver in the black honors those who suffered for them, yanno?

I offer as an example the time when I was to be married. As my wedding approached, there was brewing and building conflict and strife within the body politic that is a closely-knit Italian-Irish family. People got upset because so-and-so was going to a third-cousin twice removed’s wedding (not even in the Church egads!) and not mine, or that I was getting married before an older cousin was whose wedding was 6 months later….all was building to a fever pitch when tragedy struck. My grandmother, the salt of the earth whom to this day I still miss terribly, had a massive stroke and died. Ten days before my wedding.

We buried her the weekend before my wedding – an event I then wanted to postpone because I was berift with grief. I was told in no uncertain tones that I HAD to get married the next weekend whether I wanted to or not and I’d better look like a happy bride because the family needed this.

So, I did, with a heavy heart. It was an amazing day, so full of joy and light I believe my grandmother was dancing with us from the other side of the bridge. Plans to attend the Cousin’s wedding instead were abandoned, according to the caterer mine was the only wedding they’d done where everybody who said they’d come came. It was silver all the way through.

Now I’m not equivocating the Tech shootings with the natural death of an elderly person. Having said that, I do believe that loss is loss, grief is grief, pain is pain. Wrapping oneself in the Uniqueness or Specialness of one’s pain does nothing but isolate yourself from healing.

The trick is, to keep living, to celebrate, to not let these random acts of violence distroy that which is wonderful about life. To live in constant fear is to not live at all.

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