After the last three months, its pretty safe to say the word Sandy will forever make me cringe. No one knows what to say after a day like Friday. I am still trying to get my head around it, and I think I never will, really.
I grew up 20 miles from Sandy Hook Elementary, and my parents still live there. Newtown is very much like the communities that surround it – small town, close-knit, everyone knows everyone. My mom works in my hometown’s insurance agency, and whenever we talk on the phone she always fills me in on the local gossip. Did you hear so-and-so is getting married? I talked to [lawyer you used to work for] the other day – he asked about you. Town came to a standstill today when someone backed over the stone wall in front of the post office. It’s New England though – so even though everyone sort of knows everyone else’s business, we all sort of keep to ourselves. It seems, though, that these days, as we grieve as a community, we find out that we really do share the important things.
The national news shouldn’t be reporting from Danbury Hospital, but they are. Danbury effing Hospital – where only last year my dad was treated for a heart attack and almost 21 years ago where my brother was born. And now the freaking Westboro Baptist Church – yes, those insatiable asshats – are taking it upon themselves to roll into town parading their ignorance and hate speech. It seems that all I can manage is to clutch a mug of something warm and stare out the window shaking my head.
You see: this kind of thing shouldn’t happen at all, but it just. doesn’t. happen. here.
The weather today reflects my mood: cold, cloudy, intermittent wintry mix. I’m having trouble smiling. I’m having trouble thinking of anything else. Going through the motions doesn’t begin to describe.
I’m not a parent, and I grieve. I’m not a teacher, and I grieve. I suppose I grieve as a Connecticut native. And I grieve with the world for my state and the region where I grew up.