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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Your Agenda Is NOT on Today's Agenda

This is getting depressing.

Last time I blogged was in September, and it was a remembrance of 9/11. And the blog prior to that was about the Aurora, CO, theater shooting. Now, here I am again, writing about one of the biggest tragedies our country has ever suffered. Two days ago, some obviously deranged man shot and killed 26 innocent people at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT; before that he killed his mother with a bullet to the face. Twenty of the fallen were children, all ages 6 or 7.

As a parent, learning about the murder of 20 children ripped me apart. I'm devastated for all of the victims' families, but even more so for the mothers and fathers who will have to bury their babies. I cried off and on all day. I cried because these parents would be going to school to identify their children rather than picking them up to take them home. I cried because I was thankful my kids would be coming home. I cried because those parents will have to look at presents under their Christmas tree that their children so desperately wanted but will never get to enjoy.

I searched the Internet for information and perhaps something to help make sense of this unspeakable act. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised to find people using this tragedy to further their political and religious agendas.

Right now, the focus shouldn't be on gun control or prayer in schools. There's plenty of time to debate those things. For the time being, can't we just concentrate on coping and healing? If I lost my child in such a heinous manner, the last thing I'd want to hear is how his/her death could've been avoided if our country had stricter gun laws or let students talk to God during class. I'm not arguing the merits of either stance. I'm saying that's not what anybody, especially the loved ones of the shooting victims, needs at this moment. Oh, and equating the murder of these children at the hands of a madman with abortion is ridiculous at any time. Don't. Just don't.

We as a nation should be focused on the living victims: the loved ones of those who were killed, the children who survived something much too evil for their young minds to comprehend, and even the gunman's family. How will they ever move on from this? And what can we do to help them all cope?

Many a school morning I am irritated with Daughter, who seems to think "hurry up" is synonymous with "please take your sweet-ass time getting ready." On those days, I can easily spend the 10-minute drive to school bitching at her. Sometimes there are tears; they're usually mine. Since I know mine is not the only infuriatingly slow-moving child, I hope none of the parents had a rough morning with their child--not knowing that would be the last words they spoke, the last minutes they shared. I pray no mom or dad is beating her-/himself up over something like that. No matter how bad our morning is, I try to remember to tell Daughter and Son I love them. From now on, they will never get out of my car until they've heard those words.

I pray the families of these victims will somehow find the strength to get through this holiday season. I hope in the future they are able to reclaim some of the joy they once felt at this magical time of year. I don't know how I ever would, and I don't know how they ever will, but this is my wish for them.

A final note:

I will not post the murderer's name. Frankly, he's already been given too much attention in the media. Rather, I would like to acknowledge those who died at his hand:

Charlotte Bacon, 6
Daniel Barden, 7
Rachel Davino, 29
Olivia Engel, 6
Josephine Gay, 7
Ana M. Marquez-Greene, 6
Dylan Hockley, 6
Dawn Hochsprung, 47
Madeleine F. Hsu, 6
Catherine V. Hubbard, 6
Chase Kowalski, 7
Jesse Lewis, 6
James Mattioli, 6
Grace McDonnell, 7
Anne Marie Murphy, 52
Nancy Lanza, 52
Emilie Parker, 6
Jack Pinto, 6
Noah Pozner, 6
Caroline Previdi, 6
Jessica Rekos, 6
Avielle Richman, 6
Lauren Rousseau, 30
Mary Sherlach, 56
Victoria Soto, 27
Benjamin Wheeler, 6
Allison N. Wyatt, 6

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