One Response To Tragedy

There is, yet again, so much to write about.

But somehow, a human who only weighs about nine and a half pounds is trumping all things that seem important. Right now.

Forgive me if posts get a little out of order here.

A week ago, a whole bunch of kids were shot at school.

Though I was home all day, I didn’t hear about it until after three o’clock. Carter and I had just picked up Eliott and it came on the radio. It was the top-of-the-hour news brief on what is normally a pretty tame radio station, and I wasn’t paying much attention. Eliott immediately tuned in to “children” and “shot” and started asking questions.

We got home. I sent her and her sister outside and turned on the TV, catching the ongoing live footage and all the false reporting that came out that day. When she came back inside, Eliott immediately asked me, fairly straightforwardly, “What happened to those kids at school? Somebody shot them?”

This isn’t exactly the kind of news you want to sit down and explain to your kindergartener, and had she never been privy to it in front of me, I might have avoided the conversation completely. But once it is out there, Eliott is not the kind of kid to let something die. Remember her obsession with the election? I’ve learned to be as matter-of-fact as possible with my oldest child, and though details aren’t always necessary, the truth typically is much easier than trying to fabricate something a little cushier.

A very sobering conversation ensued, and for its brevity and clarity, I think the best way to relay it is to do so as close to exactly as it happened. I am so often dumbfounded by the insight of my five-year-old, I think should probably be recording more of her life than I often do.

It went a little something like this:

So some bad guy shot a whole bunch of little kids at school? What happened to them when he shot them?

Well. Honey. They died.

So where are they now?

In Heaven.

Well that is lucky for them. Because now they get to be with God and Jesus, and that is way better than being here.

(Pause.) Yes. Yes this is true. You are right.

But that is not lucky for their parents. Because they never get to see their children again. (Here, she tears up.)

Yep. Yes, you are right, Eliott.

Well what happened to the shooter?

Um. He died too.

Do you know what? That bad man needs to go right up to Heaven and tell every single one of those kids that he is sorry. And then he needs to leave.

God. I hope that’s how it works.

Posted in Confessions, Eliott Tagged with: ,
One comment on “One Response To Tragedy
  1. Marilyn Whitney says:

    Wow Elliot is very wise…

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