Is it just me or has there been an obscene amount of sadness this week?
I can't even imagine what went through the minds of those runners and fans in the first minutes of that chaos. What must it be like to witness that? To smell the burning flesh and fumes from the bombs? It just breaks my heart with a sadness and helplessness that is only comparable to the feelings I felt the morning of September 11, 2001.
What makes someone hate THAT much? Don't get me wrong, I have stumbled across people throughout my short time on Earth where I thought, "Ugh. I hate her/him!" But I've never hated someone so much I literally wanted to take their life, and I can't even begin to wrap my brain around wanting to annihilate an entire country and culture of people because of my hatred.
What do we do when the world seems so desperately dark? What do we do when we feel a sense of hopelessness for our future and our childrens' futures? How we do continue to see the good in humanity when it seems like there is no goodness left?
Some people pray. Some people cling tightly to their family or their friends. Some people go out and do good for others to remind themselves (and others) that there is indeed some good on Earth. Some people just retreat further into their holes, imaging a sense of safety in their solitude.
What do I do? A little bit of it all, I guess. I have faith and a loving, forgiving God that I turn to for comfort. I have family and friends that I want to hug and simply say "I love you". I try to give someone an extra smile or a little bit of extra help just so they know not everyone in the world is bitter and afraid. And yet in spite of this, part of me still wants to hide under my bed with my baby, husband, and dog.
But we can't. We can't hide from our new reality and our new world. Why would we want to? Because as much as that part of me wants to run scared, I know I can't. We can't. Because if all the good people run and hide, then they will have won. They will have achieved their goals and we, as a nation and as a whole subset of good people, will have lost.
There is a quote floating about on The Facebooks from Mr. Rodgers (as in PBS' Mr. Rodgers' Neighborhood) that basically says something like "When something bad happens, look at the people who are helping". And I'm sure you've seen video footage from Boston where dozens of people are running toward the smoke and carnage to help the victims.
There is the good. And there is indeed, a lot of good.