I woke up this morning to the news of another shooting in the United States: 50 dead and over 200 injured. Then a friend on Facebook posted something about how the U.S. really IS helping Puerto Rico, and how you shouldn’t watch CNN. When I arrived to school, it was to received the news of a fellow teacher who passed away last night after the most gallant fight with cancer. He has a little girl Ale’s age, and another in fourth grade.
I can’t imagine. I can’t imagine losing my husband. I can’t imagine my children being without their papi.
I was thinking about Rafa last night. I had heard last week that they had news of the cancer spreading. He was also dealing with a lot of depression. And last night, as I drifted to sleep, snuggled between my two perfect little bundles, I made a plan to send him some books. Not books for him to read for his own pleasure, but books to read with his girls. Because those little girls deserve sweet memories of being with their dad at the end of his life.
The biggest difference I can see between having kids and when I didn’t have kids is the way I look at disaster. I look at events happening and think, what if that were my daughter. It makes me more empathetic and way more scared to judge others.
What if it were my daughters who lost their homes in a storm?
What if it were my daughters who didn’t have clean water to drink or enough to eat?
What if it were my daughters couldn’t go back to school for weeks?
What if it were my daughters adjusting to life without electricity?
What if my daughters went to a concert and never came home?
What if my daughters were in the wrong place at the wrong time?
More than anything, I see events like those I read today (mass shootings), and I think, “Why are we moving back to that?!” I know that Mexico is in the U.S. News often, and in an ugly light. But (usually) when there are events of mass killings here, they are connected to drug cartels. You don’t often read about innocent people being plowed down by home-grown terrorists.
I read about the drug issues that are rampant in East Tennessee, and I get scared. I get scared when I hear that schools are putting “over-dose kits” in each location within Knox County. I get scared when I hear that cops are carrying over-dose medicine in Jeff County. I get scared when I think of the number of people who carry guns. I get scared when I think of my little girls growing up in that environment.
I know living in fear isn’t the way to go about life either. Fear robs us of our peace–and the Lord knows that we need peace during these crazy times!!
I don’t even know how to end this post. Perhaps with a plea that you pray for everyone suffering today. Because the problems that you and I deal with on an everyday basis are small and rather insignificant when you compare them to the problems all around us.