The craziest thing about a day is the juxtaposition of experience from one person to the next. One person’s brisk Friday afternoon can be another’s personal nightmare.
Friday was a good day for me. I left work at lunch to make an appointment at the W Hotel. After the appointment, for some strange reason I decided to walk back to work. It was an unusually warm day, the sun was out, I felt fortunate to be able to take in the day and I certainly needed the exercise. I set out for my walk…took a stroll up 15th, cut through the promenade in front of the White House, saw the construction that was taking place in preparation for the inaugural ceremony, marveled at the thought that my President is Barack Obama…I walked up Pennsylvania Ave, cut through GW’s campus, stopped in Whole Foods and picked up a gift for a birthday party. And finally, approximately 30 minutes after setting out on foot I made it back to my office.
It is absolutely amazing then to think that while I was marveling at the White House and taking in the sunlight that seemed to perfectly dance off of the front lawn – right at the time that I was taking in the sheer beauty of the day – the world was standing still for those that were in the midst of their very darkest hour.
While I was experiencing the levity of a remarkably beautiful Friday, families, friends, and the Newtown community were waging a war with the devil. A devil that carried out the slaughter of the innocents.
It is not until I got back to my office and walked by the TV in the common room that I learned the full story – 26 human beings murdered, 20 of them babies. I watched President Obama address the nation and welled up with emotion as he fought his own tears. He cried for the innocent. He cried for the senseless violence. He cried because yet again, as a country, we had reached a new low. The nation and many across the world wept with him.
This might sound ridiculous, however, I find it amazingly cruel that the unthinkable happens to us – we lose loved ones, we experience violent trauma, we have unspeakable acts of savagery committed against us – and no matter how horrific the occurrence and how hurtful it is, time doesn’t stand still because of our hurt.
There are countless families in Newtown that suffered a wound that will never be made whole. They lost a child, a mother, a sister, a wife, a friend, an aunt and their world went dark…and in what seems like the cruelest twist for those in the midst of the darkness, the sun had the audacity to rise again on Saturday and light a world that did not include their loved one.
I’ve heard people share kind words to help digest the horrific day…look for the helpers…lean into your faith…focus on the good in people…all good thoughts.
Like so many, I wish I had something to say or communicate that would help. I wish I could erase this hurt. I wish I could do something. With that wish, I will do the only thing that I can do – I will send up a prayer to the universe…to a God that I am undoubtedly conflicted with right now…to a heaven that I’m certain exists only because we witnessed the work of the devil last week…
A prayer for those in the darkest hour:
My prayer is that little by little, each day, the sun will become just a bit easier to bare and that one day its warmth will remind you not of the love that was unfairly taken away, but of the love that was transitioned to the universe and made manifest to us all.
Peace and love.