Like everyone else in the country, as I went about my weekend, my thoughts kept returning to Sandy Hook Elementary School. The senseless unimaginable violence that took the lives of twenty little children and six brave adults who tried to protect them. The children killed were all six or seven years old. My son is also six. I looked at him today and tried to imagine how somebody could fire a rifle at little children, but I could never complete the thought. It's unimaginable, and that means that I truly can't imagine it. I don't want to. I don't want to think about it at all. No. I want to barricade my house, home school my children, and eat off the land.
When I send my son to school, I worry that he'll fall off the monkey bars. When the caller ID on my phone shows the elementary school, my heart always skips a beat before I hear the nurse say "he's fine, his teeth are fine, but can you pick him up?" Nothing could prepare a parent for what happened on Friday. I think about the people who raced to the school and waited outside desperate to hear news of their loved ones. The panic and inability to breathe until they saw their child, their sister or brother, their mom come out the front door. I think about the parents who found out their child was among the victims, and that their bodies were still inside the classroom until the investigators processed the scene. I think about the emergency officials who will never close their eyes again without seeing those little bodies. And I think about the brave teachers and faculty who protected their students as best they could, some of whom put themselves in the line of fire and made the ultimate sacrifice.
We're never really safe anymore. Movie theater shootings, mall shootings school shootings, bombings and 9-11... we all know at this point that any time, any place, some nutcase might decide to make a statement. But we can't barricade ourselves in our homes. There is evil in this world, but it is no match for the good.
I keep wondering, what can we do about this? Some people believe gun control is the answer (or part of the answer). But what about me? What about you? What can any of us do? The only thing I keep coming back to is love.
There is evil in this world, but it is no match for the good.
Our capacity to love, to share, to embrace, to empower, and to protect is far greater than any evil in this world. I think many of us go about our days without remembering that. Without feeling an obligation to spread love and joy and peace and understanding all around us. But I believe that if more of us worked on a daily basis to be a force for good, we could change this world. Good is powerful. Good is contagious. One simple good act can change lives. One small act of kindness can cascade farther than you could possibly imagine. Be kind and love fiercely. I don't know about you, but that's what I think I can do.