Today, I planned to share photos from a baby shower I attended on Friday night. It was glittery and sweet. But, while leaving the celebration for a tiny new life, I learned of the tragic loss of 20 little lives and 6 heroic teachers. And suddenly, in that moment...life lost some of its sparkle. I am not a mother, and cannot fully fathom the loss of a child, but my heart is heavy and my mind is full of prayers.
Lots of bloggers have chosen to stay silent today. Because I blog irregularly, silence on my part isn't a statement...it's really rather quite usual. So instead, today I chose to use my voice....something I've found myself doing less and less in this community.
During this time, I feel we each must choose to be silent, to cry, to speak out as we see fit. But most of all, we must each actively choose to build up, not tear down...to band together, not push apart. To lay aside our own selfish interests and find a way to change our country into a place where no parent has to fear that a goodbye kiss as their child boards the morning school bus...will be their last goodbye.
I want to live in a world where babies always come home from school....where the only baggage we ask a 5 year old to carry is a backpack filled with finger paintings and a lunchbox. Where schools are a place for lightbulbs to turn on in tiny brains, and not places for candlelight vigils due to the loss of tiny lives. I don't know how we get there, but it's high time we start trying.
When I was a little girl, we hung four star ornaments on our tree for four babies we knew that had gone to heaven. Last night, I dug through boxes I'd sent from the States and found a few star ornaments. They're nothing like the hand-painted, hand-glittered memorial ornaments of my childhood...and there weren't 26. But each time I look at them, I say a little prayer for the 26 families who said goodbye too soon.
Sleep in heavenly peace, sweet children and the six angels who protected them.
You will always be remembered and treasured.