Like you, the senseless murder of 20 children and six educators has left me feeling depressed, helpless and enraged. I can’t get my head around the unending horror of these indiscriminate shootings by sick young people. It’s unfathomable to me why we have been unable to come together and legislate against easy access to military-grade semi-automatic weapons.
In these days following the Sandy Hook massacre I have listened to the predictable clamor and finger-pointing about who and what is to blame…from gun control to parents, divorce rates, an inadequate mental health system, and media violence…but there has been little movement toward real change.
In the midst of my despair I read about Robby Parker, the father of one of the victims who reached out to the shooter’s family. He said “I can’t imagine how hard this experience must be for you, and I want you to know that our families love and support goes out to you as well”. This act of humanity actually lifted the veil of my sadness. In spite of Robby Parker’s heartbreaking loss, he did not become consumed by anger or vengeance and found a way to embrace everyone who was suffering, and doing so moved me toward healing.
We need not wait for more legislation, mental health professionals, treatment programs, teachers in self-contained classrooms, or after school prevention programs because none of it will happen quickly. Right now parents of problem children are suffering in silence because there are so few resources available to them. We can reach out to them just like Robby Parker did and find a way to heal in community. Schools, churches, hospitals, clinics can provide a safe space to invite parents with problem kids to talk to each other, and learn strategies about dealing with what they are facing. Mental health professionals would actually volunteer to help facilitate the process.
Thanks Robby Parker for reminding me that the way from Newtown’s horror to healing in the New Year is to reach out lovingly when someone is in pain and let them know you care. So this is my New Year’s resolution, I will volunteer to facilitate a group for parents with problem kids and find a place to make it happen.
I reach out to you Relatives to send my blessings for a healthy, fulfilling, and inspiring New Year
Mi Takuye Oyacin.