december 14, 2012.

I attempted twice today to post a status on Facebook about the horrific events that transpired in Newtown, Connecticut.  Twice, I have posted and deleted them.  I think this is happening because I am desperately trying to lighten the horror, anger, sadness, and confusion I feel with words.  The words I have read from others are true, all of them, but they are not working for me.  I am at a loss because no matter what I write – my words could never even begin to help those people directly affected by this tragedy.

A quote: Empathy involves the inner experience of sharing in and comprehending the momentary psychological state of another person. – Roy Schafer.

I can offer sympathy to these victims, but can I offer something I think is even more important: empathy?  I don’t know.  Can I really comprehend the state of mind of a parent who has lost a perfectly innocent, beautiful child to such a senseless act of terror?  No.  I cannot.  Can I empathize with a person who has lost an adult loved one in such a horrible way?  No. I cannot.

I do know what it feels like to wake your child in the morning, to feed them breakfast and talk about what will happen in school.  I know what it feels like to argue about the need for a hat, to chuckle as you shove it on his little head as he finally smiles and gives in.  I know what it feels like to wait for the school bus to arrive, and to watch the object of your unconditional love saunter down the walkway – backpack stuffed with books, a lunchbox, and a teddy bear.  I can’t even begin to imagine what it feels like to have him not walk up the walkway and into the house at 3:45.  I can’t begin to imagine  knowing that the morning routine will never happen again, because he never came home from school.  I can’t imagine these things because they hurt so much, I put them out of my mind.

It’s easy for me to pray for these victims today.  It’s easy for me to hug my children today.  It’s easy because we are home safe tonight, Christmas lights sparkling on our tree, candles glowing and filling the house with the smells of the holidays.

What I really think I need to do is pray for the answer to my question…How can I really help these people?  This is my struggle, Lord.  Tell me how to help.IMG_6448

waiting for the bus


6 responses

  1. Sometimes words are not necessary to comfort one who is experiencing unspeakable painof tragic loss. A prayer, a hug, sharing tears. Sometimes there just aren’t any words. I can’t imagine sending a child to school where we believe they are safe, and getting a call to come because a madman has let loose and murdered a most treasured gift. Difficult to explain the world and how it works to young children, particularly since we as adults don’t understand. The ways of man are not the ways of God.

    • i agree mimi. these people will hopefully find even the tiniest bit of comfort in knowing that others truly want to help. this is only just the beginning of a long, long road. the ways of man are becoming so strange to me.

      • Still not sure what I am feeling, this is sooooo big and horrible. I said something needs to change……..looking forward to that. It needs to happen, I just HATE that it took 20 tiny lives. Mental Health is huge and I have watched it be neglected for my 17 years in the school department. I know how to refer, but the resourses are lacking. I hate guns!! Don’t know enough about gun laws, but I do feel that the interent has opened pandora’s box on evil, way too easy to buy bad stuff.

  2. So perfectly said Cal. It’s 3:30 am and I cant sleep. My heart is filled with the joy of knowing that this evening my family will be together again, but it is also filled with the enormous sadness of knowing that so many families will never be home together again. I also feel like I should post something on FB but what could I possibly say…..

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