What's it like to live under constant rocket fire? Someone sent me this account from the Facebook page of a woman who lives in southern Israel
It's seven a.m. and you have just finished dressing your kids for
school. Your oldest son is busy jumping on your bed, the baby is
whimpering because he's ready for another nap, and your two-year-old
daughter is showing off her pearly-white teeth, complementing herself
very loudly on a brush well done. You and your husband are debating who
should drop off which child and when. Between all the jumping, whining
and giggling you wish you could stay in bed and didn't have to drive to
work. Just a normal day, right?
Well, not quite. Because then the
siren goes off. Not quite sure how sirens fit in to this mundane story?
You see, in my world, these sirens exist. They warn us when a rocket has
been launched from Gaza, granting us forty seconds to run for shelter,
forty seconds to grab our children and run for our lives.
hear it together and we know the drill well: last night, shortly after
nine o'clock, there was another missile attack. Last week we had two
attacks. The kids know what to do.
My four-year-old son was in the
protected area within seconds. I could have sworn he got from one room
to the next in a leap. I grab my daughter, who has a tendency to freeze
when she hears the siren, and my husband takes the baby, whose sobs have
in the meantime turned into wails. We crouch down together against the
wall and listen as the siren dies out, anticipating the boom. But the
silence is broken first when my son speaks.
It's Psalm 121. Me-ayin ya-vo ez-ri. I know the words well. But the
voice I do not recognize. Half-quivering, half-confident, I sense in his
recitation a sound no parent should hear in their child's voice.
I sense fear.
"My help cometh from the Lord, who made heaven and earth." I don't even
hear the boom, which is surprising since the rocket landed just two
blocks away, demolishing a house, causing much destruction to the
neighborhood, endangering the lives of dozens who were waiting for the
bus to go to work or school (26 people were treated for shock). All I
hear is the voice of a child, desperately trying to shed some light,
gain some understanding of his chaotic reality.
"The Lord is thy
keeper; the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand." He's four years old.
He doesn't understand the concept of death. He doesn't know a thing
about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He has never heard of terrorism,
of shooting unarmed civilians day and night.
But he knows fear. He lives it.
Dear God, please let tomorrow be a normal day.
No one should have to live like this. And that's why the IDF is going to be asked to do something to put a stop to the terrorists firing those rockets once and for all. It was a mistake not to finish Hamas off four years ago when we had the chance. Hopefully that mistake will not be repeated.
Labels: Gaza, Gaza envelope, rockets