So I realize that many, many bloggers observed a “Day of Remembrance” yesterday for the Sandy Hook victims. I didn’t, purely because I was on vacation last week, had written and scheduled yesterday’s post weeks ago, and, quite honestly, didn’t think about postponing it. That doesn’t mean I wasn’t cognizant of the suffering, grief, and anguish gripping our nation, and especially the families of those killed.
I thought of them as I put my kids on the school bus, saying a little prayer for even more guardian angels than I normally send with them.
I thought of them as I wrapped presents for our kids…how many of those first graders’ parents already had presents under their family’s tree for their little ones?
I thought of them when I picked up my daughter after 4K, as talked flowed around me of the school board meeting tonight that will now include a discussion of school security. School security, in our little country school, in rural Wisconsin.
I thought of them after I picked the boys up from school and all three kids were singing different carols (offkey) in the car on the way to the post office…something that I would have immediately discouraged (or tried to narrow down to one song) last week.
I thought of them as we unwrapped our nightly Christmas book and snuggled on the couch to read it.
I thought of them just now, with my children safely tucked into their beds, as I downloaded photos of our family vacation to Florida last week.
That, you see, was the post I planned to write tonight. A little travelogue of our adventure, the craziness and the fun and the countless memories we made. But I just can’t write that post tonight.
On Friday morning, our last full day in Florida, the kids begged to drive two hours each way to Clearwater Beach to see Winter, the dolphin from A Dolphin’s Tale. We were having lunch in a funky little local cafe, with only a couple of other tables occupied, when I called my mom just to check in. She told me the news from Newtown. As I sat there, watching my kids wolf down pancakes for lunch, I couldn’t comprehend that such a horrible even could have taken place. Yet it did.
Since then, my husband and I have both given lots more hugs, been much more tolerant of the vacation/Christmas/general kid excitement, and been immeasurably more mindful of how truly blessed we are.
This is the last photo I took on our vacation, just before we left the beach to go find some lunch. We were fortunate enough to have all of our children right there with us when we heard the news (they didn’t hear it), and not feel the need many of our friends did, wanting to go pick their own children up from their schools. We knew they were safely in our arms at that moment, even though we couldn’t keep them there forever. I’m certain that in years to come, that’s what I will remember of the moment captured in this photo…that all was right in our little world. Maybe next week I’ll write that post I meant to write today. For now, I’m praying for peace for those 26 families and counting my blessings every moment.