When you are a parent …

I have tried to blog about what happened, but I couldn’t.

(I still don’t think I can, but I feel like I need to say something about it before it’s OK to cautiously continue with my usual drone of cheery project-y posts, you know?)

I have been doing what every other parent has been doing. Hugging my kids longer than usual. Kissing the downy tops of their heads. Giving them extra tickles and getting extra smiles. Playing endless games of hide and seek, and being grateful that they are here to play with.

This is the only thing I read, and it basically destroyed me. So I haven’t read any more articles, or watched the news. I can’t.

I know the basics of what happened, and I can’t bring myself to know any more. There is a photo of the childrens on Facebook, and I close my eyes as I scroll past it. I know that if I look closely at their little faces, I will lose it.

I now understand why my mom has always been fierce about not watching movies/reading books/watching TV shows about children who die. I get it now. Mom, you are so right.

When you are a parent, news like us isn’t just awful, tragic, horrible news. It’s crushing. It reminds you of how easily your whole world could collapse. How you have no control over it.

Everyone is afraid. On Friday, No less than six people on my Facebook were talking about now wanting to homeschool their children. I understand, 100 per cent.

My two little loves are still too young for school, and they don’t go to daycare, so I didn’t have the fear of dropping them off somewhere that so many parents have been experiencing this week. I don’t think I could have dropped them off. I would have started crying. Kept driving. It’s still far in the future, but I still wonder if I’ll be able to do it?

It doesn’t mean home-schooling is the answer to this. To this whole situation. Keeping our children at home with us is no guarentee they will always be safe (says the mom who took D to the emergency room last weekend because of an accident that happened at home), but being physically with them just feels safer, doesn’t it? Where we can squeeze them and kiss them to our heart’s content.

When I think of Christmas being less than a week away, and those parents … those families … I am devastated for them.

Everyone is hurting for them — we as a country, we as a continent. And, as parents, we are hurting for them the most, because it’s our very worst fear playing out.

Newtown Savings Bank and United Way of Western Connecticut are now accepting donations to the Sandy Hook School Support Fund. To find out more and/or to donate please go here. (Thank you to Rebecca for the tip.)

So what do you think?

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