Nothing quite like an earthquake to literally shock you into remembering your own mortality.

I was in bed watching a movie when it happened at 3am. The initial jostle surprised me. Then it immediately dawned on me what was going on as the entire building shook. The truth is, I just sat there frozen in fear–in fear of dying. In fear of the quake getting stronger, in fear of the building collapsing, in fear of the landfill beneath me crumbling into the ocean.

It’s not so often in life that you experience a raw, in the moment, fear of dying. I can’t even imagine what it must be like to live in a city where air raiders are bombing throughout the night. At the end of it all, we’re just among the lucky ones.

This experience has definitely motivated me to prepare an earthquake kit. Before, you kind of just joke around with friends. You either think it won’t happen to you, or you casually push away the idea because subconsciously, confronting your own death is inconceivable and absolutely terrifying. I hope this situation has motivated other people, too.


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