My daughter Karen posted the following message on Facebook today:
“I shouldn’t have to have the conversations with my kids that I’ve had this week. I shouldn’t have to learn that they have “burglar” drills at school, where doors are locked, lights are out, blinds are pulled and children hide in silence in the dark, under their desks.”
Several of my friends have asked why I didn’t blog about Sandy Hook yesterday. I couldn’t. The incident rendered me wordless and all I wanted to do was to quietly and fervently pray for the children, the families, and our country. Today I want to speak of the unspeakable.
Last night little children who could have been tucked safely into their beds at home dreaming of Christmas, lay dead inside their school in the company of forensic experts. Parents, who dreamt of making their children’s dream come true on Christmas morning, went home with aching empty arms and anguished souls.
A woman was seen running from the scene of the shooting and screaming “Why, why?!” And the pundits try to answer her unanswerable question for hours on end as we sit glued to a screen hanging on their every word, devouring tragedy. As if the mere knowledge of the heinous act was not enough to fill us to capacity with grief, we want the details, please.
This time, I opted out. No news channel for me. I found my consolation envisioning little souls crossing over into love with the adults that died with them, and angels holding the hearts of those left behind. I thanked God for the blessings the little ones bestowed on their families in life, and for the goodness of a community that will rise to support its people. I thanked God for a president that can be moved to tears by the fate of little children, because I never want us to be in the hands of a man or woman that cannot feel enough to cry. And most of all, I thanked God that this time, my children and grandchildren were spared a direct confrontation with violence.
I am tempted to talk about the why, or perhaps more appropriately the why nots, given the climate of anger that surrounds us, and our abandonment of the mentally ill. Not tonight. Tonight I want to just reach out and gently touch you. To remind you that darkness and hatred cannot rule the world as long as there is a spark of love. And I want to offer a prayer not only for the children, but also for the adults- the principal, the teachers, who dedicated their lives to children and died with them. May God bless them all. And you.
My friend Cantrell has a signature at the end of each email. It reads: “breathing peace”. Cantrell, I have being doing that today and it has been a great consolation. Thank you!