Yesterday, Friday, December 14th, 2012 as I was sending emails to guests to wish good health and happiness, an email from Paul Bott, a FB friend popped up. The email read: "We all need to stop what you are doing to pray for the comfort for those who survived and the families of those who were killed at the elementary school in Conneticut. Pray too for our own salvation in real terms from this tormented society. I'm sick. I'm just sick from this."
Since there are no t.v. or radios at the Kismet Inn bed and breakfast and I deliberetly try to refrain from reading the news even online, I did not know what he was talking about. But just reading it, I felt my heart drop to the floor, so I immediately went to The New York Times
and The Guardian
websites and saw what I had feared and suspected. As I read my tears kept rolling harder and harder.
Believe me you I have been through death and life. My one and only child, was born 31 years ago, today, December 15th when her father, my husband was in prison for his political beliefs. I gave birth to her not knowing if she would ever see her father. I have lived through Iran/Iraq war when we had to hide from Sadam Hossein's rockets and I have seen the horror attack on the twin towers in NYC. The shooting in Newtown took me back to 9/11 when I was driving up from Queens, NYC to Camden, Maine to look at a property for a bed and breakfast. I heard it on the radio in my car and when I did, initially, I thought the radio was giving a review of a science fiction movie so I changed the station, but heard the same review, changed again and heard the same thing, changed again and heard late Peter Jennings' voice. It was then I pulled to the side on I95 because I clearly could not drive. I became sick, my daughter who was attending Clark University at the time, bled for a whole month, the city reminded me of the time in Tehran when I would see flowers, candles lit everywhere for the slain soldiers. I cried for weeks.
The attack on twin towers were shocking and horrifying, it was an attack by enemy targeted to bring down a financial system or whatever was in their mind, plan. But the attack in Newtown, the bucolic city as all the media calls it was not the enemy, it was not to bring down anything, do we even know what it was for? These children were our children, as President Obama said, "The majority of those who died today were children — beautiful, little kids between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. They had their entire lives ahead of them — birthdays, graduations, weddings, kids of their own. Among the fallen were also teachers, men and women who devoted their lives to helping our children fulfill their dreams." and today we find out twenty, 5 and 7 years old.
I am at such a loss with not just words but at a loss and flabbergasted with sadness at how we as a society can let these things happen. I cannot imagine someone killing their mother then children. I found this quote by De Rain very telling.
"The death of a child is like a stone cast into the stillness of a quiet pool;
the concentric ripples of despair sweep out in all directions, affecting many, many people."
My heart goes for all the families, friends and residents of Newtown and condolensces. Among the slain, the teachers showed much heroism and one in particular stands up most is Victoria. She died a hero today. She hid her first graders in the cabinets and closets after hearing the gunfire. When the shooter came to her classroom, she told him that her students were in the gym. He then gunned her down and moved on. She saved the lives of all of her students. Please pass this on if you see it. She deserves to be remembered for her bravery.
You can learn more about her from her school website.