We spent Sunday afternoon in the garden of a friend’s place, celebrating the end of the year and friendship. Children climbed the mango tree, and ran through the garden. Basked in an afternoon glow, musicians set up on the back deck and played ‘Amazing Grace’ on ukuleles. I had tears in my eyes. Here we were – here children were – beautiful, in an afternoon light – celebrating. Content. An afternoon filled with music, warmth and laughter. Somewhere cold, on the other side of the world, twenty-seven families are broken; living with a pain so unimaginable, after an event so tragic it hardly bears thinking about.
At 9.30 on the 14th December, a twenty-year-old boy entered Newtown Sandy Hook Elementary School in western Connecticut and shot twenty children and six adults at close range, multiple times. The children were aged between the ages of five and ten.
It doesn’t make sense that a twenty-year-old boy carried guns.
It doesn’t make sense that someone would think to enter a primary school, armed.
It doesn’t make sense that someone could stand in a room, aim and shoot small children at close range.
It doesn’t make sense.
I can’t imagine that there is a parent in the world who heard these headlines on the radio, read about them on the Internet or watched the footage on television who’s heart didn’t sink to their stomach. This is too close to home.
Children don’t deserve this. No-one does. Such senseless, horrific violence.
The families of these children are hurting. A small community is hurting. They may never heal.
Following the Connecticut massacre, we pull our children closer and hug them with greater warmth. We will never know what Adam Lanza was thinking that day when he walked into Newtown Sandy Hook Elementary or what events lead to his decision. All I know is that children need to be nourished, nurtured, protected and loved. None of this makes sense.
My thoughts, wishes, prayers, hopes, love and anything that is remotely useful goes out tonight to these families.