For the last two weeks, since the senseless massacre of three young children and their caring adults at Covenant School in Nashville, I’ve been perpetually one thought away from crying.
When I think of the absurdity of defending military assault rifle access for the mentally ill or whoever the hell really wants them and that being more important than protecting children, it’s almost more than I can take.
When I observe the willing blindness that suggests murdering children isn’t about guns when the only country on the planet that systematically murders its children is the one dead-set on defending guns (all countries have mental illness by the way), is the only country that thinks having an AR-15 is a more important right than being safe at school, it’s almost more than I can take.
When my friend writes and asks for any advice on how to talk about it all to his second grader who had friends at Covenant - and I think about all of those difficult conversations for parents and, more importantly, the horror of the fact that our children have dying on their minds, it’s almost more than I can take.
When I think of my 3rd-grade daughter telling me, “it’s really scary”, it’s almost more than I can take.
When I watch the outrage of two young, black, male officials who were duly elected being removed from office by the white, male, politi-christian patriarchy in an attempt to silence their nonviolent voices, simply because there is a white, right, political super majority and a spirit of revenge that lacks empathy, understanding, Christian values, and common sense, it’s almost more than I can take.
When I see yet another massacre yesterday, this time at a bank, and persistent inaction by white, right, politi-christians, it’s almost more than I can take.
And, when my daughter’s school’s front porch ends up the crashing end-point of a car chase in which one car was shooting at the other, it’s almost more than I can take.
And, when my other daughter hears gunshots as she lies down for bed and comes down crying in fear, it’s almost more than I can take.
And, again, when politicians defend policy that has made “the car an extension of the home” and led to thousands of new guns on the streets of Nashville, easily stolen from cars, ignoring pleas from the police who are now under-staffed and under-armed, because guns are just that important to politicians, it’s almost more than I can take.
When I look at my children and the world they are already having to face and will inherit when I’m gone, it’s almost more than I can take.
And, in the silence of a stoplight, these thoughts come crashing in and the tears begin welling. In the fleeting flash of panic when I drop my daughter off at school, smile, chase away horrific thoughts, drive away, and then crumble, the tears rip through me. In the moment I get to silently gaze at my daughters without their knowing, the tears surge. On the walk or the run when it’s just my thoughts and my head trying to clear, my throat tightens and the tears roll out.
I have nothing much to offer here other than to let you know that I see you. And, I know it’s almost more than you can take.