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Remembering Sandy Hook

I originally wrote this post last year.

We can’t forget that horrible day. We can’t forget those beautiful children. We must think of their parents and the hole in their families with them gone. In honor of this day, December 14, I will remember the victims of the Newtown shooting.

 

 

 

You know what’s coming up don’t you?

I’ve been dreading it. Not like the 20 sets of parents are dreading it, no. But dreading it.

The anniversary of Sandy Hook will be Saturday, December 14.

I know that many children have died before and since that day. That genocide, cancer and horrors take children EVERY DAY. Yes. I know this. But for some reason, this tragedy reverberates to the depths of every corner in my soul.

I remember exactly what I was doing that Friday when I learned of something awful on social media. Facebook was littered with praying for Connecticut statuses. I had no idea. I went to my laptop and checked the news. My pulse quickened, my blood went cold, it did, it really did. My gut churned with nausea. The tears came to my eyes and the absolute horror grabbed at my throat. I thought first of my own children in their classrooms. I prayed they were safe.

And then, I prayed for the parents of these children. I can’t imagine. I can’t imagine going to that school that day and having a trooper or first responder approach you. You know. You just know. How does the world not fall away. How do your knees not buckle, your heart stop at that moment that your whole existence is ripped from you?

The reports were coming in all over the place. There were arguments over 2nd Amendment rights. Arguments over mental health. We were arguing! Little boys and girls were covered in blood stained Osh Kosh and Gymboree clothes, and Hanna Anderson tights, and Old Navy Christmas sweatshirts, and we were arguing over the fucking Constitution!

I wanted to scream. There were wrapped gifts under Christmas trees for children that would not be able to open them. There were stockings that hung on mantles that Santa would not fill.

There were caskets that needed to be picked out.

Oh my God. 20 little caskets. Why oh why did this happen? How could this happen?

Heroes were made that day. Angels were made that day.

Months later, parents steeled themselves and headed to Congress to fight for gun control that could possibly save future children. There was mocking of them by pundits. What asshole mocks a grieving parent saying it was in vain for political gain?

You lose your child, you fight for others to not lose theirs. It’s that simple.

We need to talk people. We need to compromise and figure this shit out.

There’s a lot that is wrong. There’s a lot that needs changing. I don’t have the answers. But there has to be some steps, some small changes we can evolve. Where crazy people don’t armor up and bring magazine clips to schools to murder children.

If you love your guns, fine. I love my kids. I love your kids too. I love your kids more than you love your gun. Do you love my kids more than you love your gun?

I’m just asking. I don’t want a fight. I want respectful discussion. I want you to respect me and my children, as much as I respect you and your 2nd Amendment rights. That is all.

I will acknowledge your right to bear arms. Please acknowledge my right to want safety and regulation for those arms.

Can we do this? I think we can. We’ve accomplished more.

 

Make the Sandy Hook Promise if you’re interested in education and logical discussion on issues of gun safety.

 

 

Biting my tongue

You know what’s coming up don’t you?

I’ve been dreading it. Not like the 20 sets of parents are dreading it, no. But dreading it.

The anniversary of Sandy Hook will be Saturday, December 14.

I know that many children have died before and since that day. That genocide, cancer and horrors take children EVERY DAY. Yes. I know this. But for some reason, this tragedy reverberates to the depths of every corner in my soul.

I remember exactly what I was doing that Friday when I learned of something awful on social media. Facebook was littered with praying for Connecticut statuses. I had no idea. I went to my laptop and checked the news. My pulse quickened, my blood went cold, it did, it really did. My gut churned with nausea. The tears came to my eyes and the absolute horror grabbed at my throat. I thought first of my own children in their classrooms. I prayed they were safe.

And then, I prayed for the parents of these children. I can’t imagine. I can’t imagine going to that school that day and having a trooper or first responder approach you. You know. You just know. How does the world not fall away. How do your knees not buckle, your heart stop at that moment that your whole existence is ripped from you?

The reports were coming in all over the place. There were arguments over 2nd Amendment rights. Arguments over mental health. We were arguing! Little boys and girls were covered in blood stained Osh Kosh and Gymboree clothes, and Hanna Anderson tights, and Old Navy Christmas sweatshirts, and we were arguing over the fucking Constitution!

I wanted to scream. There were wrapped gifts under Christmas trees for children that would not be able to open them. There were stockings that hung on mantles that Santa would not fill.

There were caskets that needed to be picked out.

Oh my God. 20 little caskets. Why oh why did this happen? How could this happen?

Heroes were made that day. Angels were made that day.

Months later, parents steeled themselves and headed to Congress to fight for gun control that could possibly save future children. There was mocking of them by pundits. What asshole mocks a grieving parent saying it was in vain for political gain?

You lose your child, you fight for others to not lose theirs. It’s that simple.

We need to talk people. We need to compromise and figure this shit out.

There’s a lot that is wrong. There’s a lot that needs changing. I don’t have the answers. But there has to be some steps, some small changes we can evolve. Where crazy people don’t armor up and bring magazine clips to schools to murder children.

If you love your guns, fine. I love my kids. I love your kids too. I love your kids more than you love your gun. Do you love my kids more than you love your gun?

I’m just asking. I don’t want a fight. I want respectful discussion. I want you to respect me and my children, as much as I respect you and your 2nd Amendment rights. That is all.

I will acknowledge your right to bear arms. Please acknowledge my right to want safety and regulation for those arms.

Can we do this? I think we can. We’ve accomplished more.

 

Make the Sandy Hook Promise if you’re interested in education and logical discussion on issues of gun safety.

 

 

Peace in Connecticut

I don’t always like to blog about controversial topics. I don’t. But I’m a writer. So I write my feelings. My blog is my voice and I try to use my voice with a purpose.  Here are my thoughts on the horrible event at Sandy Hook elementary in Connecticut.

The fact of the matter is- I hate guns. But before all my NRA readers get hot under the collar at me- give me a chance here. I support the 2nd Amendment. Sure. I don’t like it, but that’s my opinion. You can carry a handgun. You can own hunting rifles. But get those mother fucking automatic assault rifles out of the hands of citizens. I don’t know why we don’t agree on that. The assault ban law expired years ago. Why?

So with that said, yes, I’m sure I’ve pissed some people off, BUT- here is what I know we can agree on. The persons who have committed these atrocities in the last year, and the last 10 years, all were mentally ill. Right? Nobody does this is thinking soundly. Clearly we can use these examples as a learning tool. Can’t we?

Politicians, lobbyists, activists, LISTEN UP- we need to stop reacting in a knee-jerk fashion, pointing fingers, spending millions of dollars on lobbying, blaming parties (this is not a party issue, I assure you.) I have Republican friends who hate guns and Democratic friends who own them. We need to get to the root of the problem and fix those who are mentally unsound.

It isn’t easy. I’m not stupid. But why do all the stories of family members and acquaintances to these criminals start with, “I knew something wasn’t right with them…”

I don’t know how you can argue your right to bear arms of a semi automatic firearm to a mother who’s 5 year old was gunned down while sitting in their Kindergarten class. Or tell the surviving children of that class why their teacher’s son came with so much fire power to kill his own mother and their classmates.

This could have happened anywhere, to anyone. It has. We’ve seen it. From Amish communities, high schools, movie theaters, places of worship… there is no place safe in America. There just isn’t.

So this is why I’m asking those that sound off in the argument on this to be kind, to be respectful, to honor those that are surviving the aftermath. Yes, people kill people. But guns used by people kill people too. Terrible things will continue to happen in our world. This event rips out our hearts because we can’t understand it. The fact is, more children die from auto accidents, bicycle accidents, and childhood cancer than they will from a mass shooting. But why does it always feel like there was something that could’ve been done?

30,000 people have friends and family members who are missing them in just this passed year lost to gun violence. My question is for all of us, what can we do to lower that number? What can we do to protect people’s rights, without threatening people’s safety.

What countries in our world have fewer gun deaths and better mental health provisions? What is their system? This isn’t a socialist or capitalist problem. This is an American problem. We need to honestly and thoroughly look at every single possibility we can do to prevent this, or minimize this from happening again.

The date on the calendar, 11 days until Christmas, makes this more painful. I think about the presents I’ve already wrapped for my children that are under the tree, that are unwrapped hidden around the house in special places. Their advent calendars happily opened each morning. I can’t not break into tears thinking of those advent calendar doors that will go unopened in those houses in Connecticut.

My heart is truly broken.

Peace. Truly, and sincerely- peace.