My plane landed in Boston late last night. It was my first time back in Massachusetts since the tragedies of last week.
Being away during the Boston Marathon bombings felt surreal. Yes, I was thankful that my family was far away from any danger, but while hearing the news from afar I desperately wanted to be part of the strong and resilient Boston community. Our week away consisted of constant checking in with Boston connections to make sure they were OK and hearing far too many stories of those who were not.
This was one more event to add to the growing list of tragedies for which I have no words. Trying to decide how much to share with our young children in order to preserve their innocence, yet provide them with the tools to head back to school.
Teachers and administrators have been fantastic. An email received from the superintendent of schools said:
The pride we feel for law enforcement’s coordinated efforts and for the
cooperation of ordinary citizens goes a long way to patch the huge new
tears in our collective sense of security, but a feeling of fragility
Since school was not in session last week, the very experience of coming
together tomorrow, of seeing friends, trusted adults, or colleagues may
surface strong emotions for students and staff alike.
At my son’s next soccer game tribute will be paid to Martin Richard, the eight year old boy killed in the bombings at the same instant his mother and sister were severely injured.
An email received from one of my boy’s soccer coaches:
Tomorrow prior to the game we are being asked to please take a moment of silence in memory of the young boy killed at the marathon as he was a member of the Dorchester Youth Soccer Association.
Please know that we are going to respect this request but we will NOT mention that a boy was lost in this attack. When we take the moment we are going to say that we are coming together as a team to hope that those injured during the attack get well quickly and we will keep them in our hearts.
The guidance counselors are prepped and ready for children having any difficulty. Ronnie from Econesting shares resources for coping in her article, Are the Kids Alright?
I remember exactly what I was doing on 9/11. I have no doubt that this will play out much the same. I will forever remember that I was walking in the San Diego Zoo when I first heard about the Boston bombings.
In my heart I know that the spirit of Boston will prevail. It already has. As Robert Kennedy once said “Tragedy is a tool for the living to gain wisdom, not a guide by which to live.”
The Boston as we knew it before we left on vacation has changed forever.