There are going to be numerous posts on blogs across the internet about the Tragedy at Sandy Hook. It's one of those moments in history that we will collectively remember forever. It's not something I would usually speak about because in this case, there are just no words. But like all parents I am left trying to wrap my head around the entire ordeal.
If you aren't a parent, I am sure it is still upsetting to hear about this unimaginable tragedy; but if you have children, it is amazingly upsetting. Most of us never met these students. We are not friends with their parents and until now, had never heard of Sandy Hook School. But these were our children, their classmates, their friends.
I imagine over and over in my head, these parents and children. They are us. There were lessons about holding hands when you cross the street, wearing a helmet when you ride your bike. There were talks about not talking to strangers and what police officers wear beacause knowing that means you know where to go for help. There were arguments and tantrums over not eating raw cookie dough, because it has raw eggs. There were songs sung in the bathroom as hands were washed with warm soapy water for the correct amount of time. Parents uttering "don't lick that" or "we don't play in the toilet". Parents yelling at children about never leaving the yard or porch, or eyesight of mom. Everyday, we all do it. We do it over and over and over and over, without ever thinking. We aren't thinking about teaching our children to be safe, it is just one of those natural parenting things that happens, you just do it.
There is a moment every parent has experienced that plays out like this: You are in public, you turn your eyes away from your child for a moment (usually to pay a cashier or answer someones question) and when you turn your eyes back your child is gone. This is the longest moment of your life as your heart feels like it has stopped and jumped into your throat just has someone has knocked the wind out of you. And, like most parents, you are lucky enough to turn your head the other way, locate your child and breathe. I can only imagine that the parents of the children we lost will be living with this feeling for the rest of their lives. I can not imagine the amount of strength it would take to go on. My heart breaks for them because there is nothing they could have done. There is nothing any of us can do to make sure our children are 100% safe 100% of the time. The best we can do is tell them we love them, every minute of everyday and hope for the best.