The boys called with that news, and then an update on the plans of their day. "We're gonna hit the "white trash" water park (a natural rock outcropping where there are slides and tunnels) and take a hike in the neighborhood...we'll see you at home." I had an odd feeling all day about these boys galavanting all over town and wondered why. They are 18 and 15 and know the rules and how to have a good time. I thought about all the potential problems, from crashing the truck to falling off a rock and cracking their skulls. Then I scolded the voices in my head and told them to have a good time. Thankfully, when I got home, they were in my kitchen along with another buddy, eating crackers, drinking milk and talking about all the fun they had. "We don't need dinner" they said, "we're heading to watch the Silver team play" and as they were running to the car, "Ma, we'll call on the way to the midnight movie."
"The midnight movie" is a concept I am not used to. My daughter was not a big movie fan and didn't feel the need to be at a theater in the middle of the night. But these boys...they love this kind of thing. So they went and I laid in bed waiting for them to come home. I went to bed around 10, and then woke up multiple times looking at the alarm clock and waiting for time to pass. Sure, I dozed...but the last time I woke up, it was about 3:05 am and felt a sense of gratitude that they should be home soon.
About 3:30, my 18 year old walked upstairs, bent over and kissed my cheek and said "we're home" and I let the anxiety go and fell into a deep sleep.
But, as we are all learning, I am one of the lucky ones. My boys were in a theater in Colorado, watching a premiere that was hyped just like the ones in Aurora. My kids just happened to be in Littleton...in the theater closest to Columbine. Ironic, huh?
Once again, Colorado's heart is broken. I can't imagine what it is like to wait all day for news that you know your going to hear and wish you weren't. News that will break your world apart and take away what most of us with kids live for.
Last night, after a baseball double header where Howie plays and Mac helps coach, we sat around the kitchen, each one of us with a computer opened to a news source. We took turns throwing out information about the tragedy, the people lost and the gunman. We talked about how senseless and how angry we all are, but mostly how terribly sad this whole thing is. We talked about the what if's...if someone had a gun, if there were no guns ever made and so on and so forth.
Is there a way make sense of this tragedy? I personally don't think so because there is nothing sensible about this. As I watched them interview the gunman's neighbors and people who knew him, it seemed to me he was kinda normal...as normal as a quiet, smart kid that did well in high school and college and was loved by his parents. So what happened?
I remember in 1999, when Columbine happened, I got a sitter for the three kids, while Jim and I wandered silently in the sloppy snow for hours. We went to pay tribute to the folks that were lost at Columbine...but that's all I did. Sure, I prayed for them and their families and every time I go to Clement park, I walk through the memorial and remember. Is that enough?
What can I do? That isn't a direct question but a rhetorical one. I don't need to hear about gun control right now or gun rights or anything like that...I'm not a gun anything and to be totally honest, I hate guns but...that's another conversation for another time. I mean, what if anything can I do for the families, for the victims, for the state? What can we do as a group?
I went to bed thinking about this and woke up thinking about this. I am one of the lucky moms. Think about this absurd statement...
"My kids went to the midnight movie and came home alive".
I guess we add that kind of thing to the worry list, huh?
I don't have an ending for this post and don't have an answer to any of the questions I pose. Maybe you do and if so, let me know.
At times like this, I question, get mad and scream at God. My husband, Jim always says the same thing, "Honey, you gotta lean on your faith." I gotta tell you, I'm leaning hard and waiting for an answer. Let me know when you get one...
We'll tawk tomorrow,
I love you all,