Monday, October 19, 2009

I'm a Terrible Christian

I went to see Lumo at the Riveria theater on Thursday. It’s a documentary film about rape as a weapon of terrorism in the Congo, focused mostly on a single girl who needs several operations to repair the damage to her vagina. All proceeds went to HEAL Africa. The founders of HEAL Africa, Dr. Kasereka (“Jo”) Lusi, MD, and Lyn Lusi, sat for a Q & A afterwards.

My friend Steve Sorkin invited me. His daughter Naomi had some peripheral involvement with the filming, or maybe she’d just invited him to a screening, I’m fuzzy on the specifics. But Steve saw the film and the turnout and decided he could do better in Miami. According to Dr. Lusi, Steve did. We were the largest turnout they’d had in America.

What these women go through is sadistic and torturous. The Congolese government’s complicity is criminal. People’s lack of awareness of how our buying habits directly contribute to chaos in the region (they are rich with two minerals vital to cell phone production) is tragic.

But let’s talk about me.

I was worried when I finished moving, I'd fall back a few steps in my emotional recovery. When the Treehouse was no longer a project, that just left me in my new home. I expected a difficult emotional period, but I hoped it wouldn’t happen. My hope was not met. It’s been days of miserable loneliness, not productive solitude. The harrowing documentary took me outside myself long enough for me to remember there’s a larger world outside my misery.

I am selfish. Solipsistic. Using Lumo to cheer myself up.

In my defense, it’s not like I left with a bounce in my step and a song in my heart, just without self-pity. For the first time in days, I slipped off to sleep the second my head hit the pillow.

My ten dollar donation buys a mosquito net. I hope there were other folks there with deeper pockets.

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