12-14-12: I think my reaction to the events of today were the same as every parent when they found out: I wanted to go get Micah from school right then. Anna was out sick today so I don’t think it hit me as hard with her (even though the school in Newtown was Pre-K – 4th) because she was sleeping peacefully unaware upstairs when Andrew told me what had happened and I rushed to turn on the news.
It is truly inconceivable. The horror that adults saw while they shielded the kids eyes from as they escaped to the safety of the firehouse. The horror that the parents and families of the victims must face. It is an incredibly acute concentrated version of the psychosis we all have inside of us- called sin- and we will not be rid of it until Jesus returns.
Airline restrictions, metal detectors, extra security guards, increased gun control…none of it matters. Add another tragedy to the books: Sandy Hook Elementry school in Newtown CT.
Micah got off the bus and I stood on the porch. He held out his arms and I didn’t mind the babyish way he said “ma-ma” because all I wanted to do was hold my baby.
One kid in a class where they hid in a bathroom responded to his teacher when she explained there were bad guys outside and they had to wait for the good guys to come and get them. “It’s ok. I know Karate” (or it may have been Tae-Kwan-Do). I imagine Micah’s response would have been similar. “Its ok, I can just punch them in the face”. I fear it could also be the quality in him that would lead him to run into the halls in the range of the automatic weapon. But, Micah is a follower, after all, so he would have followed his teacher and classmates into the hiding place- whether it be the cubbies, a corner, a table, or a bathroom. I hope. No, I hope there is never anything so awful again. I wish it never happened. It makes me sick to my stomach. Literally.
President Obama cried as he talked of the children victims whose ages range from 5-10. (Micah is 7 and in first grade like the kids who hid in the bathroom.)
Life goes on though. We can’t let a tragedy zap the life from our children (though it did knock the wind out of us). Mama took us all to a Christmas light show tonight. Gabe was fascinated. Micah worked hard to figure out how all the pieces worked together and danced to the music, and he talked about each process of thinking…Anna went back and forth from wide-eyed amazement and cowering behind Grandma’s arm. Andrew thought it was awesome and had to pull over several times to take it all in.
At the end, we saw Santa. Anna told him about the baby doll she wants- the one that laughs. Micah out of the blue asked for a diving board. And he tagged on the end: “a new video game”. Santa looked at Andrew. “and do you have a pool to go with the diving board?” Uh, no. So we had to explain that a pool wouldn’t fit in Santa’s sleigh.
Under the lights Micah had said “Santa’s not real. I know who really buys us the presents. Mommy and Daddy.” The tone was “well, duh.” We answered “yeah, but we really like to pretend!” Of course he was still in shock when the time came to park outside of Santa’s Village and he said “ you know the real Santa is at the north pole, these are just fake Santas.” Never the less, he was star-struck, with stage fright when standing before the “fake Santa”. Gabe was most fascinated with the train that we did not pay to ride, nor did we pay for the bousncy house, or the tiny ferris wheel. The floor was lined with hay and even I could tell the air was strong and stale. “ Grandma and Daddy can’t breathe well,” Grandma explained. Micah told me emphatically as we exited to fresher air “the next time we come here, Grandma and Daddy are not allowed to come.”
Micah wanted to stay up late. 9:30 he went to bed. 10:00 Andrew went to bed. I had stomach cramps. Cramps remind me vividly of labor. I replay the way I rocked and held on to the bed and breathed. And the way I woke up- almost not waking up. Now at midnight I am processing everything about 12-14-12, the day before our 11th anniversary. As I sit here, I am recovering in more ways than one.
I told Andrew I almost bought an ornament today- an old-metallic “Guardian Angel- 2012”. I thought it symbolic of a year of a battle with strep and UTI’s and birth trauma PTSD and bi-polar nos and dysthymic depression and sensory processing problems and anxiety disorders and continued use of medicine for thyroid issues and CPAP machines and flat feet (that’s all I could come up with for Gabe). And a year of killings at movie theaters and elementary schools.I think I may go back and get that Guardian Angel