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Hugging Them Tighter Today

Did I hug my children tighter tonight? You better damn well believe it…

I watched the story in Newtown, CT unfold on Facebook today…I couldn’t take my eyes off of it…say what you want about our President, but when he cried, so did I…when I heard the children’s death toll went from 18 to 20, I cried harder…something about those two little babies’ deaths made it even worse…

Like any parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, person who happens to tolerate small children, I immediately thought of my own boys…I thought of how I never worry about them going to school…well, I worry, but not of them being killed by a crazy person…

School should be the one place I know I can send my children and they will remain relatively safe…I can only imagine the horror of the adults who tried to protect those children and failed…without knowing all of the details, I imagine the six adults died protecting their charges, their pseudo-children…I’ve seen Aidan’s teachers love him in their own way…I believe that most teachers love their students…I just can’t imagine…

In other tragedies, I often wait and wonder what kind of person the gunman was…what happened in their life, what made them this way…this is one of the few times that I could care less…murder is horrific…murdering family is horrific – but the people who do always think they have reasons…opening fire on small, innocent children in the middle of a school, killing children and adults? That is unfathomable, and I don’t care what happened in his life, what twisted him…whatever…I don’t want to understand the person who could do this…

I also don’t want to talk about gun control, God in schools, politics, or whatever else anyone wants to spout off about right now…tomorrow, maybe…today? Today, I want to hug my children tighter and grieve for the loss the families and the school have suffered…

I Remember…

I never imagined that my generation would have an “I remember where I was…” moment in history.  Isn’t that just for our parents and grandparents?

But I remember where I was on September 11, 2001…I was driving to school/work and heard something on the radio about a plane crashing into the World Trade Center.  My original thought was that it was a joke of some sort…who ever heard of a plane crashing into a building like that?

When I got to campus, I stopped at the first TV I could find…and was both mesmerized and horrified…there it was…planes crashing into the Towers…people running, screaming, crying…it felt unreal, almost like I was watching a movie…I called The Ex (who was The Fiance at the time)…he had already heard from some of our friends…we were glued to the TV…I watched as the towers fell…and all I remember thinking was, “Oh my God, what about the people still inside?!” Watching people fling themselves from buildings was gut-wrenching

The college bookstore where I worked didn’t open, classes were cancelled, and nearly everyone on campus made their way to the Chapel…I’m not at all religious (and no, I don’t know how I managed to go to a Methodist college, either), but that was the most comforting place to be…

I cried when Peter Jennings cried on the news…I cried while watching the coverage…I shook my head in disbelief…

And now, 10 years later, Aidan is learning about it in school – as a history lesson, in rememberance of…and it’s surreal.  He knows to call them the Twin Towers…he knows that the bad guys hurt a lot of people…he knows that planes crashed into buildings…but, fortunately, he’ll never have to say he remembers where he was when it happened…

There were a lot of artists who put their talent to good use in the aftermath of 9/11…and most of them moved me to tears…but there is one in particular that still gives me goose bumps…by my nature, I don’t condone violence…I don’t believe in “an eye for an eye” or anything like that…but there are just some things that need to be said…and he did it best of them all:

 

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