Thursday started like any other day and honestly it ended like any other day too. There was just a bomb in between. I don't mean to trivialize it - it certainly wasn't a minor thing - but maybe I've become desensitized to such violence since it seems like it's happening all the time here or maybe it's because it didn't really directly affect us (besides the additional work it created). I think maybe I'm not able to consciously process all the emotions that go with such an act of violence so close to home in order to maintain my sanity? I really don't know. I was at work when I heard there had been a bomb, and I certainly was scared, especially because I knew Joey wasn't in the Embassy at the time and it took a few minutes before I knew he was safe. And it's certainly overwhelming that there was a bomb inside Abuja, at the Police Headquarters, not to mention the fact it was perpetrated by a suicide bomber (the first one in Nigeria). Maybe it's just too overwhelming for my mind to truly grasp and so that's why I don't feel any different or why I just kind of went on with my daily life or what. I don't know. I mean what else do you do?
I guess more than anything I feel angry. Angry that my parents and family have to sit at home, worried because there was a bomb in Abuja and although I'm safe for now, does that mean I'm safe tomorrow? Angry that the people for whom my husband works won't assign Nigeria danger pay. Angry that CNN's coverage of the bomb was limited to one sentence on the bottom of the screen. I mean, really, how many bombs in Nigeria have to go off before somebody notices? A suicide bomber from a group called Boko Haram, which literally means "Western Education is a sin," blew up the Police Headquarters two miles from the Embassy. Hello! Is anyone paying attention?!
So I've been really bad at keeping up my blog. I've been really bad at keeping up my attitude. After Thursday's bomb I am certainly thankful for my safety and that only a few people died but it's really hard to maintain a positive outlook when shit like that happens and then nobody even seems to notice. It's pretty frustrating feeling like I just got dumped here in this incredibly difficult place. I understand that we signed up for worldwide availability but I guess I just never realized the extent to which my life would change. I'm so overwhelmed by so many things - I'm homesick, I miss my family, I miss my friends, I miss being able to go shopping or running without looking over my shoulder constantly, I miss not having to worry about bombs going off! I miss not having to worry that I'm making my family worry. I mean, sure, we leave in 19 days for an amazing R&R and we just got back a month ago from an amazing trip to Stockholm, and we have all these other amazing trips planned and there are definitely so many positives that I cling to but at the same time I really feel that I am just grasping at straws. Everything is so hard. And it just keeps getting harder. And it's hard on me, it's hard on my marriage, and it's hard on my family.
And that's life these days. I don't know, for some reason blogging about my trip to Stockholm or Mallory's visit or all the other things I was going to blog about just seem really trivial and I guess that's my excuse for being horrible at staying in touch. It is what it is.