When I heard about the bombs at the Boston Marathon on Monday, I felt some of the things I imagine a lot of people did. Shock. Horror. Sadness that turned to anger.
Why did this happen? Who would DO something like this? I hope they find this/these depraved human/s and slam justice down on them. What is wrong with people?
My heart beat faster.
So I started to breathe. I recognized that I was about to spend hours watching live news feeds and scanning through pictures of the carnage. It was at this moment when I whispered to myself. Don't. You don't have too. It's ok. And so I stopped and I did the only thing that I could do. I took you by the hands, walked away from the computer and back into your lives.
I left the sink filled with dirty dishes. The dishes won't be changing the world or helping to heal it in their own small way. And sometimes on days like yesterday things become so very clear to your mama. There is so much that is right with people.
For the rest of the day we played. All four of us. We giggled. We hugged. There were extra bubbles in your bath. There was no frustration when your snack hit the carpet. There was no rush to bed. There was no rush to do anything beyond being together. Oh, loves you are so young and thankfully there is no need to explain this awful thing to you today. But there will be a day when we do. I imagine what I say might sound like this...
We are all connected. All of us. When we hurt, others hurt. That is why we feel so very sad when we see others are hurting. When we love, others love. That is why our hearts fill up when we see love roll out across the country. When we practice kindness, we send kindness out in to the world for others to feel. Today that balance was thrown off. But only for a minute, my loves. Because you will see kindness and love swallowing up the hurt as people help each other heal. Human beings rise. They rise up and they hold up the grieving and they hug those who are hurting. Those are the people that we are. Love is always stronger.
Pants and Plum, it pains my heart that there will be more tragedy in this world as you grow. But I promise that when it happens, I will not turn my back from you. I will not be swallowed into news feeds and slideshows of carnage. Instead, I will be still. I will be present with you. And we will work through our fears together, coming out the other side of them, ready to love this world that much more. Shining light into the darkness.
That is how we will change the world.