November 1, 2017
My heart is heavy today. Two acts of violence struck much too close to home yesterday.
Yesterday morning I was awakened early by a text from my husband saying, “Is Colt okay?” I was not sure what he was talking about, but my heart sunk as I saw that I had missed a text from Colton that he had sent me at midnight my time, after I had already gone to sleep. I quickly clicked it open and it said,
“Hey, I’m safe btw. There is a shooting at campus …”
Luckily my son was off campus at the home of some friends when the shooting took place and they ended up spending the night there. As details came in, we learned that the shooting had been in the area of his dorm building, so I cannot even begin to tell you how grateful I am that he had not been there. It was such a tragedy and a young student lost his life that night. It was a shock to the system so early in the morning.
My day started out on that note, but it certainly got better. It seems as though life carries on even when bad things happen. Then, at 4:15 I got a text from a friend in Dallas. It read,
“You aren’t in lower Manhattan on a bike today, are you?”
My initial gut reaction was a happy, “Are you in town?!” Unfortunately, it was not a happy question, but a concerned check-in. She was not in town, but was making sure that I was not on a bike path where, not that long ago, we had taken her and her husband out on a bike ride.
I jumped up and looked out my window and saw multiple helicopters in the air over the West Side Highway in Lower Manhattan, blocks from my home. I had been home for only a short time before her text and I was not even aware of the evil that had just taken place down the road from me … in my city … on a trail I walk, run, and bike on regularly.
I was shocked, sad, confused, distressed, and angry all at once. It is amazing how you can have so many strong emotions all at the same time. I feel so much sorrow for the lives that were taken, and those that were changed yesterday. Still just so hard to comprehend.
I don’t understand how someone can think so little of another human life. Where is the love? I feel so tired of hatred and violence.
I thought this song by Michael Franti was the perfect message today. I don’t think there is another artist who exemplifies peace and love quite like he does. I was able to see him live for the first time in January and know that it will be the first of many. I hope the lyrics of this song resonate with you like they do with me.
“What if this song was number one? Would it mean that love had won? Would it mean that the world was saved and no guns were being drawn today? …
What if everyone could say that it’s good to be alive today?
I will continue to count my blessings every day and continue to give my love to the world. It is good to be alive today. ❤