We Are Lucky

Bob Dylan is singing Knocking on Heaven’s Door and I am reading about Noah Pozner. He was six years-old, Jewish and had a twin sister. He is gone now.

Murdered for reasons we can’t understand.

My 8 year-old still hasn’t heard about what happened at Sandy Hook and I am grateful, but my almost 12 year-old knows. He doesn’t know many details but he knows enough.

Enough doesn’t describe the emails I have received and the anger/sadness in my Facebook feed. I just shake my head thinking about it.

Noah’s story isn’t any worse because he is Jewish or a twin but it resonates with me for obvious reasons. My youngest sisters are twins so I am very familiar with what that sort of relationship looks like and the massacre took place during the middle of Chanukah.

My heart really aches for all of the people but I take solace in the stories of all those who helped. Yeah, it is like that Mr. Rogers story that is going around but it works. It is reminder that the overwhelming majority of people are good.

I don’t think that banning guns will work but I don’t need to see people with automatics or assault rifles. Would like to see technology used so that guns can’t be fired without some sort of fingerprint ID system.
It is not a perfect solution, but maybe it will stop some of these things from happening. More than anything else I want to see us take a hard look at mental illness and try to find more ways to help people.

There are no good answers.

Last night was the final night of Chanukah. After the kids went to bed I spent a while staring at the lights and thinking.

Things have been hard, but we are lucky and I am grateful.

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SOCSunday janasthinkingplace150 We Are Lucky

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  • Stacey

    The loss of a child’s life is definitely heartbreaking. Blood of an innocent spilled for no particular reason, horrifying. Those little angels a
    re safe now, just hope the kids with PTSD will be fine too. Let’s just keep praying for them.

  • http://janasthinkingplace.com jana

    This is a lovely post. We told our 8 year old last night so he heard it from us. Just shouldn’t be something we have to talk about at all.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Jana,

      We really shouldn’t have to talk about it. The loss of life and innocence here is just terrible.

  • http://www.whatnowandwhy.com Arnebya

    I will turn on CNN saying I owe it to the victims to listen to their loved ones talk about them, to look at their faces, see them smiling, see how innocent they were. And less than 30 seconds in I turn it off. My 12 yr old knows. My 9 yr old does not BUT I intend on telling her since I found out mid-morning that the school was going to address it. Dammit. I knew I should have told her, even if it was “just enough” last night, because I don’t want this frightening story coming from someone else, even a trusted someone else.

    The metal detector at my oldest’s middle school is being turned back on. Oh, they must have felt safe earlier in the year and deemed it unnecessary.

    I want to find the helpers and help them, thank them, become one of them.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Arnebya,

      I have made a point to listen to some of the stories for similar reasons. I wanted to give that to the kids and the families, but I have been careful to not inundate myself because there is only so much you can hear before you start to get numb.

      Finding the helpers is a great thing to do. I really think giving back helps ease some of the sting. It doesn’t fix things, but it helps and that is worth something.

  • http://www.erinmargolin.com erin margolin

    Jack,

    I feel this. All of this. And yes, after the last night of Hanukkah I was distressed as well. Today was the first day I showered since Friday. I’ve been in a funk. Today I’ve forced myself to try and make the motions, just get through the day. Even knowing others cannot. That their family members have been taken from them. Indeed, some of us are lucky.

    wonderful post.
    hugs.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Erin,

      Sometimes the best thing we can do is the thing that others can’t or so someone once told me. The thing is that it works. Between that and helping others I find it is a good way to get myself back on track.

      Some of this just sucks but…

  • http://www.snapsandbits.com Stacie

    Great post Jack. I’m still reeling. We made the hard decision not to tell our 8yo and are hoping he won’t find out in school – he’s already afraid of bad guys. This will create so many awful nightmares for him. My 16yo was mostly angry. Those of us that got to wake up and see our kids on Saturday, Sunday, today are truly lucky.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Stacie,

      We didn’t tell our 8 year-old either, but she noticed that the end of day on Friday was very different from normal. The police were at school and the principal/staff were very active so she asked me why they were out there.

      I lied and said it was because it was the last day of school before winter break, but I was nervous that she would hear something before we got to the car.

      It is awful. I understand your older son’s anger and I agree that those of us who got to see our kids are lucky. It is just such a horrible thing.

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  • http://hajra.me Hajra

    It terrifies me to even think of what the families of the children are going through. Nothing will make this any easier for them. I don’t really blame guns but then I don’t see the point of many of us having guns also. It really is something we could live without. But then humans are to be blamed just as much.

    My sympathies with the families of the little angels.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Hajra,

      There is nothing anyone can say that is going to bring those kids back. The finality is what hurts me but at the same time I can’t help but search for something that might ease their burden somehow.

      It is just inconceivable.

  • http://tim-bonner.com Tim Bonner

    Hi Jack

    I watched the news with sadness and couldn’t believe the loss of such young lives. What courage people involved showed when facing death even though they knew their fate was sealed.

    Personally I don’t think the right to bear arms is a good thing. Gun use needs to be tightly controlled and thought processes changed. From an outsiders point of view living in the UK, I just don’t understand why this isn’t obvious?

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Tim,

      It is truly horrifying and there are no good answers. It is just a heinous crime.

      The right to bear arms is a big deal here and covered in the Constitution. I don’t own a gun but I know quite a few people who do.

      Some of them are hunters and some are people who keep them in their homes for protection. I have read most of the arguments on both sides and I agree that most gun owners don’t kill or hurt people.

      But I don’t see the need for automatic weapons or assault rifles. I don’t buy the argument that guns are needed to protect us against the government either. Years ago there was something to be said but not today.

      If the military truly wanted to come after the citizens and wasn’t handcuffed in how they went about it we would be hard pressed to defend ourselves,but that is a different topic altogether.

  • http://www.jamiemiles.com/blog Jamie

    I have tried not to listen to all the stories. As a person who tends toward depression — it’s too much. But today at church, each of the victims names was read with their ages. After each name a bell was rung. When you here 6, 6, 6, 6, — Living in a small town myself, it’s just unimaginable the impact.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Jamie,

      I hear you. I have tried to temper it so that I wasn’t inundated with news. I wanted to know and learn about what happened but there is a point at which you need to step back and gain perspective.

      I feel awful for the parents who can’t do that.

  • http://www.justjenniferblog.com just JENNIFER

    Oh goodness, not being Jewish I hadn’t really thought about this happening during Chanukah. That does add another level of sadness. So are so many levels.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Jennifer,

      There is never a good time for these things, but when they hit during special days it makes me feel even more for the people who are left behind because it taints something special.

  • Lynda

    Banning guns won’t stop it, for sure, but we need to have some common sense about gun ownership. Do you really need automatic weapons? I agree about mental health issues. I think it is such an unpleasant subject no one wants to deal with it. But we really must.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Lynda,

      Nah, can’t ban guns and frankly I don’t believe we should. Guns are a big part of the equation, but not the only part. I would like to see us use technology to make it harder to use guns that are not ours, but that is a different topic.

      Mental health has to be discussed. We need to do more to try to help those that need it.

  • http://www.living-authentically.blogspot.com Bill Dameron

    This tragedy really resonated with me as well, it hurts. Maybe it’s because I live in New England, maybe because I have children, maybe because of the sheet magnitude. But, here’s the thing. Every murder of an innocent should hurt us just as much. It seems strange to go on with our festivities, but we should celebrate every day of our lives. Happy Holidays Jack

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Bill,

      I can’t imagine a parent who doesn’t ache hearing this story. That doesn’t mean non-parents can’t be upset, it is just different.

      There is no way to rationalize or explain this. It is just a horror story that is so severe you can’t help but imagine that is precisely why it could happen anywhere. All we can do is hope and pray and try to help those who need us.

      I agree about the need to celebrate each day, it is important. Happy Holidays to you too. Hope yours is great.

  • http://www.outlawmama.com Christie

    I did the same with the Hanukkah lights.

    • http://www.thejackb.com Jack

      Hi Christie,

      I don’t know about you, but it helped me.