We love our kids, no doubt. We would do anything for them… But when you wake up to see that there have been two school tragedies overnight on two sides of the world… one in Connecticut where 27 people were killed including 18 kindergarten students allegedly by their kindergarten teacher’s 24 year old son, and the lesser known one in China where 22 school children were hurt, two seriously (thankfully not killed) by a knife-wielding man, you have to hug your children even harder tonight.
Before I read this news, I was going to write a blog about ‘8 hours of fun.’ As last night, my boys and I watched a movie at home (at which my 9 year old fell asleep), and when he woke just after 7pm, I asked him if he wanted to go ten-pin bowling, which we hadn’t done for ages. He pepped up and we went. We had two games, they had hot-dogs and chips while I had nachos, and I bought them some tokens for the arcade games. We left the bowling alley at about 9pm and decided that the night was still young, so we thought about what we could do. We went to the local ice-cream shop, but it was closed, then went to the mall, played a few more arcade games, sat down for some Churros and iced-chocolates, thought about going to TGIFs for some cocktails/mocktails but decided against it, then went to see ‘Here Comes the Boom’ at 11.20pm with Kevin James in the cinema. We had to wait an hour before we saw the movie, so we played I-Spy in the cinema foyer, which was quite hilarious. The movie finished at 1.20am, upon which my 11 year old fell asleep in it, but my 9 year old was still peppy. It was so nice to have both my boys (and me) in good spirits (which generally doesn’t happen when we go bowling), but it was s fun night all round. (OK, so now I wrote part of the blog I was going to write).
In reflection, it makes you cherish those moments even more, as if today was our very last day, we all know that last night we enjoyed each other’s company, we showed each other the love and compassion we have for each other, and we are grateful that we have these times together, because so many families miss out. And now, the families of those 18 children who have tragically died in Connecticut will never be able to have these precious moments with their children ever again. Their Christmas will be heart-breaking, every birthday will be a horrible reminder of what could be, and as Obama said, these children had their whole lives ahead of them – they will never have another birthday, graduate, get married, have their own children… some mad person angry at their mother, destroyed their lives, destroyed the lives of their loved ones and destroyed the soul of the community.
If you want to do anything this Christmas, give to charities like Save the Children, who do so much to help children who need our help either in third world countries or even on our own doorstep when they are confronted with poverty, lack of educational needs and tragedies like these ones. Know that you are blessed to have the wonderful children that you have, no matter if they are your own, your nieces and nephews or your neighbours, be thankful you can hear them laugh. And for that little part of happiness in your life, give something back to someone who hasn’t.
RIP children of Sandy Hook Elementary School.