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I don’t normally right about things like this but please take a moment to watch this video and read my words on this topic. I wish I could write this as deeply and beautifully as I feel it but I just want to give words to my feelings and do my best.
Tomorrow marks one year since the tragic Sandy Hook school shooting, where 20 children and six adults lost their lives. It was an unspeakable and horrific tragedy that strikes fear into any parent when thinking of it. On that day one year ago I sat in the parking lot of my daughter’s school waiting for her to get out, just wanting to be near her and waiting anxiously just for the sight of her, knowing that 20 mother’s that day had been stripped of that right forever. I felt a fierce need to go in and grab her and hold her but waited till the end of school to do so. I could barely stand to read or see any information on what had happened for awhile after it occurred because doing so filled me with such overwhelming grief. I felt an anger at what had happened and was at the same time so grateful for every hug and kiss and moment with my kindergartner. I can imagine no worse tragedy than the loss of a child. Yet we sit here one year later and just today another school shooting at a high school in Colorado. When will this madness end and what are we doing to protect these children?
I ask as a mother to a child who has a child the same age as those beautiful children murdered last year. What is being done? How are we working to stop this from happening to my child or your child? Can we really keep sending our children to school when every few months there is another school shooting or mass shooting, like the Aurora movie theater. Changes are being made and people are working to change laws but by this one year anniversary have we really done nearly enough to honor these little angels
(27 wooden angels to represent all who were lost,including the gunman’s mother whom he also killed)
1. Charlotte Bacon (DOB 2/22/06)
2. Daniel Barden (9/25/05)
3. Rachel Davino (7/17/83)
4. Olivia Engel (7/18/06)
5. Josephine Gay (12/11/05)
6. Ana M. Marquez-Greene (4/4/06)
7. Dylan Hockley (3/8/06)
8. Dawn Hocksprung (6/28/65)
9. Madeleine F. Hsu (7/10/06)
10. Catherine V. Hubbard (6/8/06)
11. Chase Kowalski (10/31/05)
12. Jesse Lewis (6/30/06)
13. James Mattioli (3/22/06)
14. Grace McDonnell (11/04/05)
15. AnneMarie Murphy (07/25/60)
16. Emilie Parker (5/12/06)
17. Jack Pinto (5/6/06)
18. Noah Pozner (11/20/06)
19. Caroline Previdi (9/7/06)
20. Jessica Rekos (5/10/06)
21. Avielle Richman (10/17/06)
22. Lauren Russeau (6/1982)
23. Mary Sherlach (2/11/56)
24. Victoria Soto (11/4/85)
25. Benjamin Wheeler (9/12/06)
26. Allison N. Wyatt (7/3/06)
We can never bring these children or the adults who died trying to protect them back and their families will always feel the loss of not having them in the world.
What I want can never happen though because what I want is this. I want to have never heard of Sandy Hook or Columbine and to not live in a world where this is possible. I want those children to have spent last Christmas with their families and to be getting ready to enjoy this holiday season. I want to not have to explain that the world can be an evil and scary place to my own child. I want to not worry that she can go to school one day, or to the mall, or the movies and not come home. I want someone to pay for what was taken from not just those 26 families and that community last year but from all of us. We lost the innocence of believing that are children were safe because who would hurt first or second graders, it seemed unimaginable until it wasn’t.
So give me someone to blame, give me someone to hate. Or in the absence of that let’s find a way of keeping guns out of the hands of people who are going to hurt the innocent. Let’s honor all the lives that have been lost to violence by not letting their deaths count for nothing. Let us be better people, care more, give more and pass those lessons and values forward. So today on this day of remembering be a little kinder to yourself and those around you and say a prayer or send a kind thought to those who were lost and those who grieve for them today. I think we all need that or at least I know I do
I also ask for you to sign the sandy Hook Promise
This is a promise to truly honor the lives lost by turning our tragedy into a moment of transformation, to be open to all possibilities … to have the conversations on all the issues, conversations where listening is as important as speaking. … This is a promise to do everything in our power to be remembered not as the town filled with grief and victims; but as the place where real change began.