Paper Processing

I’m back again to process. In the hopes that writing my words here will help me make sense of things. Will help someone else make sense of things. Will help someone, somewhere.

I’m still having a hard time thinking of much else besides the shooting that occurred in Connecticut. I am not thinking of the way that this will change the nation or the laws that govern this nation. I am not thinking of the big picture much. I’m thinking of how this affects me. Of how I would feel if I were more involved somehow. If this could have actually been me (and if this is why it is bothering me so much).

It seems that everything I have to say, everything I think, everything I want to do is inconsequential and not good enough. It seems that words are not enough, actions cannot help, and tears are useless. It seems that everything else pales in comparison to the feelings that the community, the family must be going through.

The details are still so hazy that I don’t think anyone can make sense of it. And there is no way to know if we will make sense of it. But it makes me think of my own life as well.

My 10th graders are reading Our Town right now. We actually just finished it today. And the lesson that Emily learned was a lesson that we all need to realize. Now. While we’re still living, like the saints and poets (as Wilder put it in his play). We need to realize that we have to appreciate life. We have to take time to look at the small things, the everyday ordinary things that we take for granted, the people that pass through us. We have to take time to be grateful.

So, as angry as I have gotten at the people that have “moved on” and are living their lives. That is what we need to do. We need to memorialize this tragedy by being grateful for what we have right now. By hugging our friends and loved ones tightly and smiling at the brightness that is our wonderful lives. And if we need to cry while we’re doing all this, I think that’s probably okay.

Clearly, I don’t understand this senseless act. And everything I heard just makes it worse. So, for now, when I should probably already be in bed or doing something else productive, I come here. It’s my therapy. My go to. My release.

And I don’t know how to fix this. Would stomping out the stigma fix it? I don’t know, but people are trying. I know people that are. But it’s not easy. It never has been. It never will be.

Stay safe. Live your lives. Appreciate who and what you have.


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