|photo credit: Matthew Cavanaugh/EPA|
Monday, April 22, 2013
I thought long and hard about weather or not to write this post. I try to keep things light here and on topic. However, the Boston Marathon bombing is a little too close to home for me. Most of you already know that I live in Massachusetts, in a small town not far from Boston. We have many family members and friends that live in and around the city. We knew people that were running the Marathon, who's families were waiting for them at the finish line. A friend from high school was sitting in the bleachers in the VIP section at the finish line directly across from where the first bomb exploded. Everyone we know, miraculously escaped injury, physical injury.
The morning started with me looking forward to celebrating my 18th wedding anniversary. I was going to drop D off with my parents, it was school vacation week for her. Patriot's Day for all of Massachusetts. Then we were going to go out for the evening and celebrate our anniversary. That plan quickly turned into not wanting to be apart, just really wanting to wrap our arms around our family and keep them close. It brought a lot of the fear from 9/11 back to me. I was stuck at work...I watched the second plane hit the second tower live on tv and all I wanted was to be home with my baby. I felt the same way Monday night. Suddenly even being at home no longer felt safe. The next couple of days were a blur of frenzy and speculation. We were together as much as we could be, either me at work and my husband home with the kids or he at work and me at home. Then Thursday came, they released the pictures of the suspects. It sickened me that they looked like every other person in the crowd. How could monsters like them not stand out like a sore thumb? We went to bed on Thursday night just mentally beat up. The last 4 days had been so stressful...trying to answer the kids' questions and try to still give them a sense of safety and comfort when we weren't convinced of it ourselves. We woke up Friday morning and all hell had broken loose! Tamelan Tsarnaev was dead and there was a massive manhunt underway for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. These two 'men', young men that have turned our lives, our city, upside down. The entire city of Boston and several suburbs were on lock down...think about that for a minute, an entire city and a half a dozen suburbs where no one was able to come in or go out. My husband's niece and my nephew both live within the lock down area. Chris' niece was thankfully house sitting and was not home. My nephew sheltered in place as ordered by the mayor. After many, many hours of searching and chasing down leads our law enforcement officials had nothing and had no choice but to lift the shelter in place order. We are so thankful they did. Less than an hour after lifting the order they had Dzhokhar pinned down in a backyard just outside the search area. Within a couple of hours they had him and we were elated. Now, here we are, faced with moving on with our lives. Just how do we do that? I know we are not so far removed from Columbine, 9/11, The Virginia Tech shootings, Sandy Hook or the Boston Marathon Bombings. How do we move on? How do I convince my kids to go to school, that they are safe there when I don't 100% believe it myself? I'll tell you how I manage to move on....I believe in the human spirit. I really and truly believe that there is more good in us than bad. In every one of the tragedies I listed above there are just as many if not more stories of people coming to the aide of their fellow man with little to no regard to their own safety. In every case there is video of people running TO the scene not away. That is how I carry on. I know that there is good in people. For example, these two college students hit the streets of Boston on Tuesday. The day after the bombings and just offered hugs to anyone who needed one. I wonder how many people took them up on their offer?