Like the rest of you, I am devastated over the Boston Marathon attacks. Heartbroken, confused, angry. The senseless tragedies that happen everyday in our hometowns chip away at all of us, robbing chunks of our fortitude and resolve. We press on and make sense of life the best we know how... and by the time we manage to catch our breaths, something horrific happens once again. This is the world we live in.
More than a decade ago back in 2003, President Bush announced that we would soon be going to war. We knew it was coming, I knew my family--steeped in military history--would forever be impacted. I remember half-sitting on the edge of my parents' bed, half-standing, watching him utter the words to a then-supportive crowd of senators. My stoic, no-nonsense, by-the-book, ex-military dad gently kissed my forehead and silently left the room. I remember knowing that moment would be one of the dozen or so in my life that would forever resonate with me, but at the time I didn't realize how or when it would return to me.
Each following year came and went, and whenever news station tickers were splayed with the details of yet another unfolding horror, all at once I was 16 again--standing in my parents' bedroom in the home I grew up in, feeling another piece of my childhood--my innocence--dissolve away. Again and again, I recall the image of my dad leaving the room, and feel as though a tangible piece of something is missing. Slipping through my fingers like sand.
I was 16 again today.
I am broken at the mere idea of innocence lost... yes, we all grow up eventually (or should), but the idea that the ends of our childhoods are marked by catastrophes committed in the name of evil rips my heart into a million pieces. This world we're living in can be such a terrifying place, and when days like today happen, I think of my dad, and I think of children who have to step onto a bus, go to school tomorrow and make sense of this. I don't often speak of my faith--and maybe I should some more--but I believe and love a God who is so much bigger than the terrorizing things people do to other people. I cling to my faith tonight and pray so hard for the people in Boston.
My talk-your-ear-off self has nothing else to offer... and that's okay. Sometimes there really aren't any words that will suffice, or any explanations that will do.