Trying to make sense

I am a small town girl. I have grown up in a small town all my life and have chosen to live in another quaint town. About 40,000 of us live here, most of them families. Drunken behavior and stolen copper rims is news here. We all live in this idyllic happy place in our mind that our homes, schools and surroundings are shielded from any crime. Because in our minds we are not New york with its share of crazies, we do not have a seedy neighborhood where people do not go. “It cannot happen here”  we condition our mind to lull it into the illusion of safety. Then something like the Sandyhook elementary school shooting happens and shatters the illusion.

Every morning my kids refuse to wake up on time, I drag them out of bed, herd them through their morning routines all to ensure they get to school on time. Every morning I breathe a sigh of relief when the house is quiet and I start my work. I cannot even begin to imagine the thought of one of them not returning. The guilt I would feel in sending them to school in the first place. My heart cries for the parents who lost their kids while fighting off a chilling fear that the same thing can happen to me. I take my kids to the doctor every year for them to be safe medically, but how do I or any of us drop our kids off at school on Monday and not have that flicker of worry and that shiver in our spines? As a parent it is heart-wrenching to realize that nothing is as hard as other parents losing their babies. It is undoubtedly the worst thing in the world.  As a parent I can’t help but grieve knowing that there are prized and carefully selected presents, secretly wrapped and hidden that will never be opened on Christmas morning.  This weekend I hugged my kids tighter every night even as I thanked every God I could think of for the fact that my child was not lying still and breathless on that cold classroom floor. It’s a visual I cannot erase from my mind’s eye. I am too scared to let my words take me to that place.  It is unimaginable the  innumerable questions that 20 set of parents are reeling under. I feel driven to do something to abate the tears and soften the sharp daggers of hurt that are piercing the collective parental conscious of this country.

Every time a tragedy like this occurs both sides of the gun debate make this into a debate about what kill most “Guns or People”. While I do not have a side in this debate I do find myself agreeing to the fact that the only purpose a gun has is to kill or hurt somebody. No one can disagree that if the Newtown killer had, say a knife instead of a gun not so many lives would be so easily snuffed out. Tragedies like these will reignite discussions surrounding gun laws, but those talks and possible changes do nothing to ease the fear millions of parents are dealing with right now.  But the other thing that very few people seem to realize is how desensitized we have become to violence. In fact every other movie tends to glorify it. People being shot or bleeding do not seem to make us wince as much. Video games with kids as young as 14 playing as the shooter ruthlessly annihilating their so called opponents. Blood and gore spilling over the screens accompanied by congratulatory messages.  It is our job as parents to make sure that our kids do not become so immune to violence that it becomes mundane to them. Something has to change and while tonight I do not have the solutions for 20 set of parents any solution will come too late.

 

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This entry was posted on Monday, December 17th, 2012 at 2:57 am and is filed under Discovery. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.