I was out all morning. I heard the news on Facebook. I was stunned. There were no words to express the thoughts and emotions swirling in my head and heart.
I prayed. I cried. I prayed some more.
I grabbed my children and held tight. "Do you want ice cream? Hot chocolate? Anything you want, it's yours". You are here. You are safe. I am lucky. I am blessed.
I now sit on the couch with a kid snuggled in close on either side, sipping smoothies. Scooby Doo is in the TV. On Scooby the kids always win. They solve the mystery. They catch the bad guy. The bad guy is never truly evil, instead driven by greed or selfishness. The hair brained scheme is easily solved within 30 minutes. The meddling kids and their talking dog save the day.
I wish life was as simple as it is for the kids on Mystery, Inc. But it isn't. It's scary. The bad guys are evil, driven by hatred and mental illness. They no longer lurk in dark alleyways. They are hidden in plain sight. They have access to guns. They lack access to the mental health care they need.
Things need to change. Politicians need to find solutions. We need to add our voices to the debate.
And tonight we need to hold our kids a little bit tighter.