Lately, I feel like those stranded travelers waiting for the volcano in Iceland to stop spewing lava. I am waiting for this awful semester to finish up, in a failed class and a train wreck of a research paper set that I can do nothing about at this point. I am also dealing with my father's prognosis, which is very poor, and feeling helpless to do anything about that. Yes, I guess I have entered another phase of response to the news of his untreatable heart disease. And I am struck by the knowledge that Jeremy needs medication quite badly, but can do nothing about it.
It is the fate of all of us to acknowledge that we are ultimately helpless to control most of the things around us, from natural disasters like volcanos to our bodies' vagaries and the will of others, not ourselves. Even the consequences of our own failed experiments give us occasion to realize that we can often only sit back and gaze with wonder or despair at the show.