I was going to write a post last Friday morning but didn't get to it in the pre-dawn hours before the kids woke up. And then the news broke of the unbelievable tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School and I could think of nothing else. I wrote a post later that day, just to get all my feelings out, and subsequently deleted it. It was just too raw and personal to share.
So much has been written in every possible media outlet in the past six days that I really have nothing new to contribute. No insight to offer. No answers to share.
I will say, however, that this tragedy was somehow different than the others that came before. Usually when I hear of these incidents, I am sad for the families affected and it helps me to put my own blessed life into perspective. For a while, at least. (The fact that I have a "usual" reaction to these things is a horrific statement to the fact that they occur far too often and our society is becoming somewhat desensitized to them.)
This time it was different, though. I couldn't hold back the tears as I heard the news. I couldn't hold back the tears as I pictured presents under Christmas trees with the names of these little kids on them. I couldn't hold back the tears when I imagined the many parents who rushed to the firestation to search for their child only to learn the horrific news that they were never coming home. And I most definitely couldn't hold back the tears when pictures of their sweet little faces started popping up on facebook.
I didn't engage in the debate over gun control, mental health or the presence (or lack) of God in schools. Instead, I did the only thing I knew how to do. I prayed. I choked back tears on Sunday morning and went to church to pray for all the lives lost and all the families affected. When I glanced around the church during the sermon, I was amazed to see almost every single woman was wiping away tears. An entire ocean of tears has been cried in the last week.
I can only hope that a tidal wave of change will come out of this ocean. And that it will be the last tragedy of its kind. That we, as a society, will find a way to stop this violence. That we, as individuals, will reach out to others who are lost and lonely souls and help them find a place in this world. That we will find peace again.
Okay, for some reason, I really couldn't move forward and post about anything but this topic today. Now that I have written (briefly) about it, I am ready to live with hope and love in my heart and do my best to bring those same feelings to others.