This morning I woke up with a heart that felt raw and exposed.
I, like so many others, feel the weight of grief from watching our nation being torn apart.
I, like all of us, am part of conglomerate of voices with feelings, opinions, anger, sadness and disbelief about events across the country and right next door.
I know, everyone is trying to grasp at answers and solutions, we want to blame someone or something.
I took my daughter to the park this morning. I watched her fearlessly climb a rope ladder several times taller than she was.
“I climb up to the sky, mama!”
I cheered her on as she kept going upward.
The sun beat down on us through a bright blue sky and I thought of the families whose lives are being torn apart by loss and grief.
I wondered what kind of world my daughter would grow up in.
It’s crazy, thinking of the world I grew up in compared to now. Now, we are daily blasted with opinion, news, videos, live coverage, instantly. There is no time to discuss with our spouses or neighbors, or pray about anything. Often that breeds instant emotional reaction. It’s only human. I think our hearts and brains literally get overwhelmed with all the information and bad news and we just get depressed and shut down.
We begin to live in constant fear. Nothing feels safe. How can we continue, day after day?
It’s too much.
I watch her climb higher and higher, with no fear. I am trying to raise her right. She’s only 2 and yesterday I let her get a sunburn and I spent the evening feeling guilty. Being in charge of a human being is hard. I want her to be kind and compassionate and brave and confident and that starts right now.
I want to tell her to look for the good, to find beauty in everything, but I have a feeling she already does.
I watch the other kids play on the playground, lost in the pretend, adventure, the joy of being young.
Innocence. The whole world is open to them. Everything is new and beautiful.
I want to give my daughter that sort of world. No matter what the media is telling me. No matter how heart-breaking and scary my newsfeed becomes.
I know with every day that passes she is seeing more, understanding more. I know one day boo-boos will be bigger and heart-break inevitable, and I can’t protect her forever.
I want to tell her, The World Is Still Beautiful
The older I get, the more black and white my beliefs feel. Ok, maybe “black and white” is the wrong phrase. I guess it’s more like every color in the rainbow. What I mean to say is, some things may be complicated, but the things that really matter are simple.
The gospel is simple. My faith can be simple. It really has to be. It’s the only way to survive in a society that feels so complex.
Yes, there is evil, and it is scary and bad. People will hurt people.
But we have the privilege of knowing how the story ends:
Evil doesn’t win.
We can look at the good guys, the heroes and protectors fighting for all things pure and good and innocent.
We can look at the helpers, working and serving, giving everything they have.
We can look at the artists, creating a more beautiful world through expressions of passion.
And we can look at the children, bbelieving in fun and giggles and beauty and light, in the power of a friend, of dreams and imagination.
Believing that at the end of the day, good will triumph and monsters will be vanquished.
Believing that Love will win and joy will be restored.
I watch my daughter grin as she kneels to hug a statue of a bunny rabbit and give it a kiss. I smile and look upward, past the tree branches into a pure sky.
I know what I have to focus on, what I have to write about, what I have to remind myself and others every day:
There is Hope.
There is redemption.
The world is still beautiful.