Ironic, isn’t it? That individuals who have made a commitment offering their bodies and futures to serve and protect their nation often experience trauma during the fireworks ignited in celebration of the birth of that nation? While the us of thirty years ago knew that his service in the Marine Corps could take my husband’s life, we never really considered where it might take our lives.
A word picture for you: For me tonight will be spent holding space for my husband as he curls himself into a grown-man fetal ball, pillow over his head, loyal chocolate lab curled up along-side him. The lab, of course, will also be shaking.
My home state of Pennsylvania is one of several in the US that has lowered safety standards on fireworks purchases. In addition to concerns of safety for those engaging with these products, consider this: for us, it’s not possible to simply stay home. Those gunshot-like sounds will be heard at unpredictable times right outside our door. Or above our roof. There’s no way to plan—we can only react.
The purpose of sharing this is not to propose that people not use fireworks, and I certainly don’t want anyone to feel guilty while enjoying them. But perhaps you might take a moment to hold space with the individuals (and dogs) for whom those sounds have a decidedly different meaning and effect.
We could use the company.