Suffer Them All

I had a nightmare last night.  Dark, and awful and the kind that has stayed with me well after waking up. 

But before the nightmare, I’d taken a picture yesterday morning.  Blue sky, and tall trees, and the sun, so bright, so blinding I could not help but cry with the hope to me it represented.

And little did I know, precisely at the very moment of that picture, what was taking place just about an hour away from where I live.

Yesterday was one of my volunteer days in a classroom of twenty some kindergarteners. And before I knew what had happened so short a distance away, I was thinking once again, as I walked across the playground where kids were carefree climbing and running and screaming-with joy-that I hoped I didn’t look suspicious in any way.  That my hands were out in the open, and that my bag didn’t look big enough to conceal anything bad, and that these thoughts should be horrifying  (well they are ) but also the acceptance of the reality that it’s just the way it is now.

So this little girl named Margot looks at the bracelet I am wearing on my left wrist.  Ball chain, with a letter A and a heart.  She asks, as she points at the A and the heart, what are those for? I tell her they are for my daughter.  That I wear them because I love my daughter.  And I can’t even begin to describe the happy little sigh she makes, that even at five she finds this gesture of love to be very very touching.  That she understands the beauty of love.  And then she asks me, how old is your daughter?  Is she older than you?

In my nightmare, a black hooded face appears at my window. He throws some type of evil destruction into my living room, and I simply sit down next to it, pleading with him to please not do this to me.

To please not do this to Margot.