If there was one good thing about being away this weekend is that I did not watch the news. Not once. I don’t need to tell you all, but Friday’s news about the Connecticut murders affected me profoundly. I couldn’t stop thinking about my kids, especially my own kindergartener, and was overcome by grief for the families. I was angry, too. Angry about our lack of priorities in this country: that we don’t take mental illness seriously or feel that everyone in this country should have the right to comprehensive health care coverage; our fanaticism with guns.
You could say I was moved by this personal account in Jezebel by a mother with a mentally ill son that regularly threatens her. She did a good job shining a light on the challenges parents like her face in receiving help for their children. It appears that our only response to such kids is…jail.
One more true mom confession in this tragedy: I haven’t spoken to my kids about it. At all. The kids are off this week and next from school and DH and I have kept the TV off except to watch pre-recorded shows. They haven’t asked any questions about the shootings, which makes me suspect that they don’t know. If they find out and ask me questions, I will hold them and answer them. But, for now, I want them to hold onto their innocence, just a little while longer…
Again, I am angry that kids their age weren’t able to do the same. Speaking of, I did find this photo collage of the victims sweet and cathartic. I also shared this gem by our very wise “music teacher” on Facebook:
“OK I keep seeing people post this Huckabee statement. Here’s what I think. God was definitely there on Friday. He was there when the principal and school psychologist made a run toward the gunman in an attempt to save lives, and when someone turned on the PA system to alert the school of what was happening, He was with the brave teachers who shielded children from bullets with their own bodies, He was there when the teachers hid with their students and read to them and comforted them and told them that they loved them, He was there with the janitor who risked his life by running down the hall alerting the staff that there was a gunman, He was there with the first responders who told the children to hold hands and close their eyes as they evacuated, and He was with the parents waitiing for their children at the fire station. Even if we don’t have school led prayer, I’m sure that there was a lot of prayer in and around the school that day and I’m positive that God never abandons anyone in their hour of need.”
Amen! What have you told your children about this tragedy? What else is in the news? What’s up with you?