i arrive at my office this morning and sit down at my desk. i stare at my inbox. predictably, i couldn’t concentrate. today marks one week since the bombing at the boston marathon. the first business day after the city was in lockdown. i decide to go for a walk.
it was a beautiful, cool day in boston today. i walk to the makeshift memorial, not far from the finish line of the marathon, which is still blocked off to the public. i stare down the empty street, thinking of how it feels to cross the finish line of a marathon. i think of my daughter, who has been a spectator at many of my races since her infancy. i am honest with her about everything, sometimes to a fault. and she is very aware of what happened last week. her question, over and over, “how could someone want to blow up people after they’ve run SO far?” there is no response, of course.
today, on the news, they talk about getting answers; the need to hear why these two brothers would want to crush the spirit of our city and destroy lives. this annoys me. what answer could he possibly give that will be satisfactory? none. there is no justification. the question that continues to roll back and forth in my head is how. not how, from a logistics standpoint, but how people could be filled with so much fear and hatred. how does that happen? how does someone have so much turmoil inside that they want to produce so much violence around them? how do i try and explain this to my daughter, while i bust my ass everyday trying to teach her to see the good in people? and how the hell does the day like we had in boston happen all over the world all of the time?
i walk back to my office, eyes brimming with tears. and only then do i realize the same song had been repeating over and over on my ipod. “the future has got me worried, such awful thoughts. my head is a carousel of pictures. the spinning never stops. . . i know i should be brave. . . it’s too hard to focus through all this doubt. . . now i wait for a hand to lift me up, help me stand. . . but if everything that happens is supposed to be and it is predetermined, can’t change your destiny. then i guess i’ll just keep moving. . .”
later on the afternoon, i leave my office again and walk to the state house for the moment of silence at the time the bombs went off last week. i have faith beside me (literally. my friend’s name is faith) and i see all these people and i feel it. the sadness, yes. but also the perseverance. the kindheartedness. the positivity of a grief stricken community coming together. i listen to npr, and hear the voices of adrianne haslet-davis and adam davis. again, my eyes fill with tears.
i have a nice, quiet night with my daughter. we finish reading a book, the tale of despereaux, a book about forgiveness, light and love. i kiss her goodnight. i am comforted by the fact that with all that i have experienced, one of the biggest lessons that i have learned is gratitude. not just being grateful, but to show that gratitude. every day. not just when we are hit in the heart with bad things happening. but regularly. hug hard.