After a week long vacation with just my husband, I am home.
I am home and I can finally cry.
To say that I was nervous leaving the kids is an understatement. To say that I was worried was putting it mildly. I had always been there for them. Me. Through anything that they had to live through, overcome, etc. it was me there.
I fretted that something would happen while I was gone, but I tried to take assurance that we had covered all of our bases and all would be well. I was scared that something would happen to us while we were away, I tried to have faith.
The youngest two got sick and I was torn in half. My babies were sick and I was nowhere near. Even when I had left them for very small periods before, I could always get to them in 30 minutes or less if I needed to. They were well taken care of, but I was hurting from not being able to tend them myself. Relying on phone calls or text messages to let me know how they were.
Then even in the Magic Kingdom where real life is pushed aside, news came from the outside about Sandy Hook.
As I began to read news reports, I was shattered and so conscious of the miles between us and the children. I tried to have faith knowing the kids were safe, but then I read it was Kindergarteners. We have two of those.
Just like all my mom friends, I wanted to rush to the school and pull all of the school age kids out. I wanted to grab the two who were staying with a friend and bring them home. I wanted them in my arms. I wanted to be able to touch them and reassure myself of their safety.
What if they had heard about it? What if they were scared to go to school?
My girls know very clearly about violence and death. They have lived in the shadow the fear it brings and were just starting to see light. What if this event was known to them and it plunged them back into not trusting and being afraid?
I couldn’t be there right away.
We continued to put faith in their caregivers and tried to continue to enjoy our belated honeymoon/1st anniversary trip we had so looked forward to.
Then the day after we were walking past the castle in the Magic Kingdom and the flag poles surrounding it were all at half mast.
Past the magic, past the place where dreams come true was the ugly reality of pain. There are some things that all the magic in the world can’t cover up and I wanted to cry. I wanted to touch the children’s faces. I wanted to comfort any fears. I was so far away.
We got home past their bedtimes and everyone was asleep. The only one who really greeted me was my 100lb furry baby who couldn’t get close enough to show his enthusiasm that I came back. I went to their rooms and lightly tried to wake them. Not much stirring, but I saw them. They were sleeping, safe and we were all back together.
I’ve watched some news coverages and of course seen so many postings on FaceBook, but I couldn’t really see it. I was too far away from my own children. Each anguished parent could have been me. Each innocent child could have been mine.
I left that magical place and came back to something much more magical. Home.
…and frankly…knowing that it was here waiting for me is a bit of magic you can’t find anywhere else.