I’m envious of people who can write eloquently and quickly after things happen like the bombings at the Boston Marathon a few days ago. It always takes me a little more time to process things like this.
While I was glued to the news on Monday, I was scared that there would be more explosions. Frightened that it was a 9/11 follow up. And as I watched the runners, spectators and the safety personnel rush to save those they could, I thought about how we’ll know eventually who did this. Maybe not why, but who. There will be documentaries filmed and books written. But even if we know both of those things, it won’t be enough. It will still hurt. The evil will still be unfathomable.
The anger in my stomach and the fear in my cheeks feels familiar. I had it a few months ago when the bad guy killed the people in Newtown. At a school. Children and educators. Before that I felt it in when another guy shot the people who were watching a movie. And before that and before that …
And now this. Children and families and friends, cheering on people who ran for hours for the sheer exuberance of the journey and crossing a finish line. A momentous achievement of the human body and spirit.
The darkest of voices whispers to me. Tragedy is hunting you. It wants to gobble up your babies and snap their bones with pointy teeth. It wants to destroy everything you hold dear. So you bitch every day about how you can’t stop eating too much or your kids broke the lamp again and your dog sheds like a mofo. Keep your pitiful problems so the bad guys won’t know you are happy. Because they are coming for you. They’ll rip your joy apart with their evil talons as soon as you let it. Don’t go outside. Hide. Forever.
But I will not hide. I tell that voice to FUCK OFF. Because life is sweet and I owe it to the victims of these massacres, my family and myself to hold the beauty and love of our world close and share it with those who need it. It makes me want to do better. To be better. No matter what, we’ll be brave. Even though it’s terrifying, we will not let the bad guys steal our joy.