Saturday, December 15, 2012

Typing through Tears

    "Senseless" does not even begin to cover the act of violence that took place at the Sandy Hook Elementary School yesterday, Friday, December 14th.  As a mother, as a woman, as a human being, I just cannot fathom why such young children could have been targeted by such a cruel act.  I'm just so distraught over it all, as is the entire country - I don't have a vested interest, I don't know anyone who was affected, I haven't suffered a loss because of it myself, but everytime I think of it right now (all those innocent little children), I break down in tears.  I was distracted enough yesterday not to focus on it too much, but today, being away from my own children, in several public shopping places while doing some Christmas shopping with my husband (while his parents took my babies to the playground), it was all I could think of, and I found it hard to think about anything else.
       My "put yourself in their shoes" sentiment is to blame.  All I can think of are those poor little faces in their last moments; their little eyes and soft chubby pink cheeks looking up to the door when that goddamn shooter entered the room, how scared they must have been, how they just wanted their Mommy's and Daddy's to make it all better.  I think of the parents of those poor angels, how they said Goodbye to their babies Friday morning, never knowing that it would be the last time they'd see them or hold them warm in their arms.  How they would have to walk into their little ones' bedrooms and know they'd never get to tuck them into bed again, never see their smiles and hear their little voices, so alive with awe and enchantment and curiosity for the world opening around them.  This will always be the Christmas when they lost part of their hearts, part of their own souls.  They'll have to return gifts that they'd so carefully planned out, hoping at that time to see their beloved's faces light up on Christmas morning when opening the perfect gift.  It will never be okay.  Nothing could ever make up for their loss, and my heart bleeds for them.
        I think of my own babies and how I would feel if anything ever happened to them.  But I have to stop right there, because I just can't go to that place and torture myself; I could never wrap my head around having to be without them after loving them for so long.  As I hug them now, I hear their little hearts beating in their chest, see the blueness of their veins and capillaries below their fair skin, imagine the thoughts they're having and the questions and ideas they're forming in their heads, watch them play and chatter and just breath.  I can't hug them tight enough, can't make them understand just how much I LOVE THEM; all I can do is tell them every chance I get, show them by giving extra hugs and kisses, try to be more patient and understanding, and just stop cleaning the kitchen or whatever else I feel is important at the time, and just be there WITH THEM.  At least I still have the chance to do all these things, unlike those poor children whose lives were cut short and those poor parents will have to miss them forever and ever.
        Everyone wants someone to blame, someone to take the fall for this, some way to take action to stop this from happening to others, some constructive way to come to terms with this, since that bastard took his own life after ending so many innocent ones for no apparent reason.  It doesn't seem like it's enough for him to burn in hell for eternity - he took the easy way out and he cannot be punished now.  I hope for the parents sakes that a clear motive comes to light, so there isn't just a huge question mark of why this bastard did this; nothing will fill the holes in their hearts, but for so many questions surrounding it to remain unanswered would make it that much worse, in my eyes.  Why did he go to the school that day at all, if he'd already killed his own mother at their home?  What did those poor children have to do with anything?  What was it that made him target certain classrooms?  Was it quick and painless?  Why did his mother have those guns to begin with?  Why?  Why?  Why?
        Many people are now petitioning for stricter bans on gun control, which I am in support of - I can understand the right to protect oneself and having rifles for hunting game, whether to provide food for ones family or as sport, but I don't think that semi-automatic and assault weapons need to be accessible to the general public, not even with a background check (apparently this particular shooter was honor roll and had no history of mental illness or criminal action, so bans probably wouldn't have stopped the sale to him anyway).  I know that "guns don't kill people, people kill people", but I have to hope that measures could be taken to deter attacks on innocent, young children.  If only it were possible to have more security at schools and public places - that may not have stopped this shooter either, as it seems he forced his way into the school - such as metal detectors, locked doors, video cameras at the entrances...  something to protect these children who cannot protect themselves.  If he'd tried to buzz in at an entrance with a camera, and they could have seen him and said he couldn't come in without removing his coat or where ever he was hiding his weapons, maybe it could have been avoided.  Maybe if there were metal detectors at school doors, it might deter someone from even bothering to enter that building.  I know that profiling and judging by someone's appearance is supposed to be wrong, but if it could save a life, so be it.  I'd do anything to protect my children, all children...  It's just not fair that they'd ever have to see this sort of thing firsthand, let alone know about it at all at such a young age.  They should be thinking about Christmas and Disney castles and race cars and games, they should be able to see school as a fun place to learn and play and make friends, not what it became yesterday.  We can only shield them from the cruelty of the world for so long, if only we could shield them from these random acts of violence.
          I'm tempted to keep Quinn out of preschool and stay at home with my babies until after the holidays, but then I'd have to give him a reason why (and who's to say that it's any safer after the holidays...), and I'd never want him to know about what happened to those poor children, or for him to realize that something like that could ever happen to him or at his school.  I'm hoping by getting some of this out of my head, out through my fingers, I might be able to overhear some snippet of this story on the news without breaking down into tears.  I don't know how to come to terms with all this yet, I hope it doesn't destroy my usual optimistic outlook, because then he (the shooter) will live on in my fear, and I definitely do not want that. 
            Quinn caught me with tears in my eyes this afternoon.  I was lost in thought while emptying the dishwasher; the quickest thing that came to mind was to say that I miss my family at the holidays, which is true.  He came over and pulled me down to him, and he hugged me the tightest squeeze ever, rubbing my back.  It was all I could do not to cry even more, just feeling his little body in my arms, feeling his heart beat against mine, the pure innocense in his gesture.  He said "I'm your family, Mommy, and the girls will be, too, when they get up from nap!"  I sighed, rubbed away the tears, and said "And I love you more than you could ever know.", to which he rolled his eyes and said "Mommy, I know", but then smiled as he went back to his toys.  I closed the still-full-dishwasher and went to play with him.  The dishes could wait, but I could not wait to just spend time with him and enjoy ever precious moment we have together.  If I can learn anything from the horrific tragedy yesterday, it's to just be in the moment and enjoy every second I get with my babies, breath them in, make memories, and do everything I can to make them know just how much I do love them.
             Sweet dreams to the angels that were lost yesterday and to the adults who were also lost along with them; may they all remember how much they were loved here on earth and not be afraid anymore, and may their families take comfort in the sweet memories that they had together.  #typingthroughtears