Saturday, December 15, 2012

A New Reality

I'm having a very hard time today doing anything productive. Yesterday's horrific events in Newtown, CT have me almost paralyzed. To go on with mundane activities, or even Christmas shopping or creating, seems offensive.
  I've been a public school Kindergarten and 1st Grade teacher for 15 years. We've practiced these "bad guy in the building" drills numerous times. And, I will admit, I have almost felt irritated with having to practice something so "out there and unrealistic." And, then try to explain to the kids why we were practicing something that required them to be crammed into a corner, be silent, in the dark while their teacher locks the door and draws the blinds.

  But, now, it's not unimaginable or unrealistic. It was someones reality. Many someones. I can't even imagine the terror, the emotion, the utter disbelief that went through those teachers minds. The kids were probably unable to really process what was really happening. But the teachers.... they knew exactly what was coming. They had time to think it through. They had time to think about their own kids or their own friends in other parts of the building. Unimaginable.
For the first time, I can fully understand what makes a Hero. What would I have done? how would I have reacted? Would I have been as brave? Would I have been able to hold it together to do what needed to be done?
I just don't know...
So, that's where I am today. Unable to create pretty things or listen to Christmas music. How can I go on knowing how my "job" has now changed greatly. I guess it really hasn't changed, but my understanding of it and my responsibility  has changed.
Cori Kozac posted this today on her blog and on Facebook:
It's the only way I can think to proceed today and maybe help me to process the feelings I am having. I hope you will join me and Cori and send a card to Sandy Hook Elementary. It's not much, but, besides praying,  it's really all we can do at this point.
I want to share a couple of things I've seen today, just as a way to honor those at Sandy Hook Elementary.
Darkness and evil do not exist independently... They are not opposites of light and Godliness...darkness is the absence of light and evil is the absence of God...
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  1. Hi Erica. I'm not sure where you are located, but I am just a few towns over from Newtown. I go there often to visit restaurants and shop. My daughter's school went into lockdown yesterday morning when there was still a lot of uncertainty about what was happening. I'm so sad that the people who devote their lives to educating our children and our children themselves have to face these kinds of horrors to do their jobs.

  2. I am with you honey. I tried to stamp today and I just couldn't find the spark knowing that there are parents and other family members sitting in shock at the loss of someone they loved. I have been doing a LOT of praying and asking God to help us all. Thank you for your post.

  3. Oh, Erica. I'm just so sorry for everyone. I appreciate your feelings.

  4. I have to say that I have always had a feeling of gratitude, respect, and love for teacher's- what they do is something I could NEVER do myself, but after yesterday those feelings have increased exponentially! I cannot even begin to imagine what those teachers went through or are dealing with now- and I just have to say that I personally know you Erica- and I can assure you that you would do exactly what all teachers are trained to do and your sweet nature and motherly instinct would automatically kick in and you would TOTALLY rise to the occasion and you would surprise yourself! I pray that you, nor any other teacher has to find out how heroic they really are, this tragedy in CT is so hard to comprehend and my prayers are with those families and souls that are suffering. Teachers are THE MOST amazing people!

  5. Erica, I've thought about you these last few days and what you would have done in that situation, and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you would have been one of the heroes. But hopefully you will never find out. God's heart is broken today too. His arms are wrapped tightly around that community right now. In the months ahead we will hear of many blessings that have emerged from all of this. It won't erase the fact that it happened, nor will it bring back those precious children and those brave educators. But it will prove that God cares. Blessed are they that mourn for they shall be comforted.Matthew 5:4. Go to church today. Thank God for your family, for a husband that adores you, for life itself. Then forget about all that needs to be done for Christmas and go out and laugh and play with your family. Love you.