Yesterday, my daughter told me that her school runs lock-down drills called “Wild Goose.” This post about how she came to share this information.
I picked my daughter up from school early the day of the Newtown shootings. We walked out of the building five minutes before the President was to give his heartrending address to the nation. Out on the sidewalk, I hugged her tight, told her that I loved her, and then gave her a quick rundown of what happened that morning in Connecticut as we climbed into the car.
During the drive home, I listened to President Obama in stunned silence for the entire ride. She only interjected twice. The first time was to say, “It’s just like the shooting in that movie theatre!” The second time, she wanted to know what was going on during one of the President’s long pauses. I held up my hand for her to wait because it was clear to me that he had choked up; all she heard were hundreds of shutter clicks.
As we arrived home I mentally prepared myself for what I knew would be one of the toughest conversations I would ever have with her. I didn’t have time to read over any of the “How to talk to your child about Newtown” articles that had begun to pop up all over the internet beforehand. The look on her face said that she wanted answers NOW. So we walked into the house, sat down at the kitchen table and talked about it. I began the conversation with, “So… how do you feel about what you just heard?”
What happened next is posted below:
There are no amount of words one can speak to ease the pain of a parent who has lost a child, but I would like everyone affected by this tragedy to know that the world is with them and they are not alone in their grief. –hp