Waiting…and the uncertainty
>It is so hard to explain the emotions we are running through, probably easier to document what we are and aren’t doing.
The days immediately following the quake, it was chaos and dread. Was there another one coming? Who was dead? Who haven’t we contacted? The phone calls and TXT kept coming in, and most we ignored, not because we didn’t want to answer, more a case of we couldn’t…I mean, what would we say? We kept repeating the same old story over and over again, deep down knowing how lucky we were, like many, but always in the back of our minds was that others weren’t. And also knowing, almost expecting, that the next one, and there will be a next one, could be the end of us, or worse, one or two of us.
And taking that element of uncertainty away, what is in store for us? Katie has just started at a new job, and actually, if you excuse the pun, seems to be as safe as a bank, but for me? I have had no communication from my employers, be it Scoot, Digi, or VFNZ. We are completely in the dark as to their future plans – I mean, I am in acquisition…who the hell is going to do business in the immediate and mid-term future? For some I understand the need for a cash injection, a quick fix, to get the necessities, but we have been left relatively unscathed so long term security is more our concern.
Katie’s work has been brilliant! From Aussie HO organising to get her home ASAP, to organising a hotel for meetings, updates, and even simple things like a shower and laundry…and on top, the following day money was put into her account for emergency use. She has had at least two phone calls a day from management, and today she goes back to work to a meeting from the “big boss” who will no doubt lend all the support required to the team down here. I have asked her to take the EAP on offer; now and again, and more frequently as time goes on, she just breaks down. It is not necessarily brought on by the news (although invariably is), but small things like dropping a cup, breaking a nail, or one of the kids being naughty. She is symptomatic of the stress and pressure we are feeling down here. I can only be so strong myself, trying to hold us together, but I am not an expert in this area. My usual response it to crack jokes, it’s my self defence mechanism, but I just can’t find anything funny to say (although some would say I was never that funny anyway!). So I just mull on best I can…beers, smokes, and coffee a big part of my routine…eating sometimes, and not wanting anything other times. Not good for the system but what else is there right now?
As I write this, I am trying to keep myself busy with ironing, laundry, and other chores otherwise the sitting around will get to me, and avoid the TV as much as I can – the ongoing coverage is repetitive, but you have to endure it to get more updates on deaths, names, and routines. But at 148, it is becoming fantastical. Just like the day it happened when it didn’t really seem like it had (or could), the rising death toll became a morbid curiosity…but until it reached 100, it didn’t seem to register. But 100, shit that suddenly makes it big, real, and ever more tragic. Sometimes hearing the stories makes me tear up, sometimes they harden my resolve, but either way, it makes me numb and indifferent…