God Bless Newtown, Connecticut
Like every other American, I’m sure, I’ve been a little emotionally disoriented in the wake of the horrible tragedy which occurred in Newtown, Connecticut, last Friday, December 14th.
I’ve tried to limit my exposure to the story by avoiding the television and newspapers, because frankly, it’s just too disturbing. I cannot bear the images that invariably form in my mind of terrified little children losing their lives in such a brutal and violent way.
My capacity to dismiss that type of violence from my mind has diminished considerably as I’ve gotten older. I’m not sure exactly why that is, but it’s a fact. I tend to believe that it is connected in some way to my own mortality, which has become very real and present with each passing year since I’ve reached middle age.
As trite and cliché as it sounds, it is true that death has a way of making us think about life, and how precious and fleeting it really is; which is why I’ve been having a tough time the past few days rallying around a women’s health blog topic to write about.
Exactly how does one prattle on about gluten-free holiday recipes, the stress of Christmas shopping, fibromyalgia, and the difficult symptoms of menopause, when mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, aunts and uncles, and grandmothers and grandfathers are burying their children just before the Christmas holidays? It just feels so damn tawdry and inappropriate.
I can’t do it.
Just last month, three teenage girls in my very small town and community lost their lives in a car accident. The driver, himself just seventeen years old, was speeding, trying to get the girls home in time to make their curfew. He lost control of the vehicle and collided into a tree. The girls died upon impact. It was a shock to my idyllic, sleepy little town, and truthfully, we are still reeling from it.
I’ve been thinking of the mothers and fathers of those girls, who will be facing their first Christmas holidays without them. I cannot imagine their grief and sadness. I also cannot imagine the grief and sadness of the good people of Newtown, Connecticut. I can never imagine burying my own child.
I hope you all will forgive me then, dear readers, for taking the time in this blog post to express what I’ve been grappling with for the past few days. I do not suppose that my own sorrow is even relevant, when it is not me who has lost a child.
But, given that the holiday season should be a time for us to reflect on our lives, and to think of others, I thought it would be appropriate to recognize and honor the families and the community of Newtown, Connecticut.
Unfortunately, for them, their hearts will be heavy with profound grief and sadness on Christmas day. But, I hope they will be surrounded with loved ones who will help hold them up as they weep for their children.
God Bless you all, Newtown, Connecticut. God bless you all.
Magnolia Miller is a certified healthcare consumer advocate in women’s health and a women’s freelance health writer and blogger at The Perimenopause Blog.