Ten years later

I’ve been wavering all day, whether I should write about the 10th anniversary of Columbine or not. Yes, no. Yes, no. But I think I’ll feel better if I just jot a note here.

Ten years ago I was driving from the University of Colorado out into the boonies where Tom taught, to pick him up and head home. I turned on the radio, but not in the mood for music, scanned for something else. What I heard was horrifying. A shooting at a local high school, and it was bad. That’s all I heard at first, and understandably, I panicked. My husband taught at a local high school. I listened…and heard more…knew he was safe…and that it was really, really bad. The panic and chaos came through the radio in waves.

So much has been written and dissected about Columbine in the last ten years, and there is nothing I could possibly add. I feel for the parents. All the parents. We forget that there were two other families affected that day. We forget because we don’t want to give the killers the satisfaction of remembering them. But they’re dead too, and their families grieve for them as well. They grieve in a way we cannot understand, for their children created the panic and chaos and death. As a childless teacher, I blamed them; how could they not know what was going on? As a parent, I no longer place such wide blame. My life would forever change if my child died…my life would end if my child killed others before taking his own life.

Ten years after the fact, I sit here today about the same time I found out about the shootings, watching my sons play outside, running and chasing and laughing in the sun. And I have hope for the future.