Monday, March 14, 2011

Japan, You Have My Heart

Japanese for "hope"  (source)

Like the rest of you, my mind and heart have been in Japan for the past few days.  I was working late when I got the news (via Twitter) of the earthquake and tsunami that devastated this beautiful country and its inhabitants.

My first thought went to my friend, Sanae, who lives in Tokyo.  I met Sanae several years ago through my fiance's band.  She's a huge fan and visits the U.S. to see them play at least once a year.  She's also one of the kindest, most positive people I've even known.
Sanae (center) teaching Heidi (left) and me (right) how to make
the rock sign, the right way.  New York City, April 2009.
I emailed her and she responded almost immediately, stating that she had internet but no cell service and couldn't reach her family.  All of the public transportation was shut down, people were confused and panicking, and she had to walk 25 km (a little over 15 miles) home.  I didn't sleep at all that night, worried for her, as well as for a dear friend and my step-niece in Hawaii.  It took Sanae 8 hours to walk home because of the massive crowd of people trying to do the same. She was finally able to reach her family from a payphone, and they were safe. Unfortunately, not everyone else could say the same.

I've experienced three earthquakes, all here in Chicago.  Last February, I awoke in the middle of the night to my bed shaking and watched three books fall of the bookshelf.  Robbie was on the road and it was terrifying (for Bubby too!), because I had no idea what was going on.  That earthquake was a 3.8 on the Richter scale.  Japan's was an 8.9.  Looking at pictures of the destruction makes my heart ache.

Tsunami in Kanagawa.  Katsushita Hokusai, 1830.
I wish more than anything that I was able to go to Japan and help with the relief efforts.  Since I can't, I'm working on a design for an art print for which proceeds will be donated to the Red Cross's Japan Earthquake and Tsunami fund. I'm also working on another piece that will raise funds for one of the organizations helping with rescuing animals that have been affected. I'll post as soon as they're available at Bubby & Bean Art and Mountains of the Moon.

In the meantime, here is a list (below) of various organizations who are accepting donations to help in their efforts to provide relief for those affected (humans and animals) by this disaster.

Love and Gratitude,

Japan Earthquake Animal Relief
American Humane Association


  1. Thank you for your post. It really brings the disaster home to hear it from the perspective of personal stories and relationships.

  2. So happy to hear your friend and her family are among those who are safe. Such a great thing you're working on to help raise funds. Great post!

  3. Wonderful post. So glad your friend is okay. Thank you for the links!

  4. So happy Sanae and her family are safe! Thanks so much for sharing these links... As soon as you get your art print posted on Etsy I'll definitely spread the word :)

  5. Thank you for the links and I am really glad that your friend is okay.

  6. Such a terrible terrible tragedy. I too have a friend in Japan, and thankfully he is alright. My thoughts are with those that have lost loved ones! Devastating :(

  7. Thank you for the links and the thoughts.

  8. I've had a hard time thinking about this and makes me appreciate my family and friends all the more. Thanks for the links.

  9. So very true. I was going to add to your list and mention the relief efforts for animals as well.

    Places to go to help animals devastated by the tsunami and earthquake in Japan

  10. glad to hear your friends and family members are safe after such a horrible disaster. the people of japan are in my thoughts and prayers!


  11. Thanks for this post. Definitely keep us posted on the design via twitter and we'll forward along. The people of Japan are in our hearts and prayers.

  12. I'm glad your friend is okay, and I will be checking out these links.
    Thank you for the post.

  13. I'm so glad to hear your friend is ok! It does make you think every time a devastating natural disaster like this takes place, and my heart goes out to all the people in Japan. Thanks for doing your part to help!!!

  14. Thanks everyone! I'm hoping to figure out some more ways we can all come together to help.

    Beloved Green, thank you for the link! There are a few other links above to organizations who are helping animals above as well. I can't even think about the animals who are affected without crying, or imagine how scared and confused they must be. :(


  15. It's great that you found your very own special way to help.
    Every little bit is so important and these disasters make you feel so helpless that you tend to forget this.
    Thanks for the links.

    (I thought I was already following you, but it turned out I wasn't....Now I'm lucky No.200!!)

  16. Oh my gosh, how wonderful. Just when I thought I couldn't love Bubby & Bean anymore! :-) I'm going to visit these links, and please post as soon as you make the art print!



Thank you for commenting! We love reading your thoughts and we're grateful for your input. (All spam will be deleted.)