Like every parent in the nation, my heart is absolutely broken for the families in Connecticut. The cavernous dark of this act cannot be expressed in words. How this evil destroyed so much snow white innocence makes one stop and think, "How can this happen? How can God let this happen? Where WAS He?!" And while I cannot say I experienced this loss, I can say that I have felt that darkness before. And then something happened.
I remember when Gideon was rushed into the PICU, hooked up to a heart monitor. I remember the doctors not being able to explain why Gideon's heart rate continued to decrease. I remember frantically wondering if I would leave that hospital without this light in my life, this gift from heaven: my precious baby boy. Right when I was about to yell at God, something switched within me, and there was a Holy presence that was both heavy and light at the same time. It felt like I was breathing in the cleanest, purest particles while my soul was held, actually caressed, into calm. It felt like the beams of grateful radiance were shooting out of the slats of each rib and pouring peace through my every particle. I didn't know if Gideon would live, but I knew everything was going to be okay. I was grateful and felt like praising God for Gideon and Brody, instead of yelling. I got it in that second: These boys of mine had added the greatest joy I had ever known in life, and I needed to be thankful for everything instead of disparaging over what may be lost. I watched the doctors and nurses milling around Gideon and knew everything would be done. God wasn't in the sickness, He wasn't in the doubt, He wasn't in the dark: He was and IS light. He was in the helpers.
My darkest moment created the moment of clearest joy.
I don't think it is possible to find any joy in the act of what happened, but I am already hearing about heroes in those atrocious moments. I am already hearing stories of the victims and the impact their short lives had on so many. I am seeing and hearing countless people joining together to wrap this community up in help and in love. That's where God is: in the love.
Now I am thinking about those baby witnesses in that school at that moment. I am thinking about our own children who can sense our worry and sadness as parents. Just like the quote above, that Mr. Rogers knew his stuff. I urge every parent/caretaker to go to this link and read valuable information on how you can help your own child while this horrific news blares all around him/her, courtesy of the wise Fred Rogers.
In the meantime, I will admit to adding more tufts of mistletoe to the ceiling of my home to serve as more excuses to slather unexpected kisses on my babies every few seconds. Also, I need to give you an update. Gideon has been assigned to a pediatric gastroenterologist to get to the bottom of his pain. His medication for the pain he is dealing with has doubled, and that truly seems to be helping. So, thank you to everyone praying for my boy and so many others like him.