Okay, that does it. STOP COMPLAINING…

I knew I was going to lose it…and I did. And now, to make it worse, I’m going to post my rant here…where all can see. So, here goes…

If you are complaining because:

  • the trains are running late
  • the buses aren’t running in Jerusalem
  • the light rail isn’t running in Jerusalem
  • you can’t get into the city to check out all that gorgeous snow
  • if you needed to be somewhere and the road between here and there hasn’t been cleared…

Here is my response:

Are you seriously complaining about the train schedule? About not getting a chance to play? No bus? No train? Seriously? I’m sorry to go a bit beserk here but 4 people died in this storm. The LAST thing we need to worry about is being a bit late to work or a train not coming.

Seriously…I’m sorry but this is just absurd. Yes, the damn train is late and yes, you might not get to work today…

…oh, and by the way, 20,000 people are still without power, some for 3 days now, a young boy is near death after collapsing outside in the freezing cold, a woman and her children were evacuated suffering from hypothermia.

An old woman fell in her apartment as she tried to push the rain and sleet outside to her balcony and she didn’t manage to close the door.She was able to call for help, and finally someone arrived and managed to get her to the hospital. Those who went to volunteer for a regular shift on the ambulances on Wednesday night – were stuck there for 36 hours, exhausted, without changes of clothes…barely getting any sleep because few could arrive to take over.

Roads are threatening to collapse, tanks have been brought into Jerusalem…and yeah, the train is late.

But at the same time…Friday when they put out a call that the Magen David Adom medics and volunteers had been at it for more than 24 hours without a break – volunteers took to the roads to try to get in and help; people have been sharing food; opening their homes, baking for those suddenly caught without challah, cooking for those who need. Sharing what warmth and food could be found. Families are snuggling in their parents’ bedrooms, happy to be safe and sharing whatever warmth and blankets they have.

The army sent in armored personnel carriers (APCs/nagmashim) – into Jerusalem where they haven’t been since 1967. In one yishuv, they went door to door to tell people that they were going to be turning on the second and last generator they had to give some warmth to the homes…and asked people without babies to keep their power off so that the families with infants could warm some room in their house to protect the youngest among them.

Over 2,000 people were stuck and rescued…enough complaining. We have so much to be proud of. A late train? Seriously? Enough.

No, this isn’t America – but from what I remember, America didn’t handle Katrina all that well, and many people had long been predicting a category 5 hurricane hitting New Orleans. Who in their right mind ever predicted Jerusalem would be hit with a meter of snow?

This is the storm of the century – it hasn’t happened like this in anyone’s memory and I know that once we’re all dug out, there will be time to review, to see where we might have done better. For now, it’s not about work and not about trains. Yes, you might lose some money if you don’t work – but honestly, that is nothing compared to what people are going through now.

So – yeah, enough. Stop complaining and take a minute to realize that even in the bad, there are blessings. A day to sit at home and enjoy your family…time to look at how beautiful Jerusalem is, even in the snow. That cup can be half full or half empty – whatever you want but for now, if you have to complain that the cup isn’t full, remember that there are people still being rescued, still freezing cold.

Think of them, send a kind thought for them and count your blessings…

About the Author
Paula R. Stern is CEO of WritePoint Ltd., a leading technical writing company in Israel. Her personal blog, A Soldier's Mother, has been running for more than 5 years. She lives in Maale Adumim with her husband and children, a dog, too many birds, and a desire to write her thoughts and dream of a trip to Italy, Scotland, and beyond.