Musings on National Walkout Day

I left work with a number of coworkers at 10am and observed 17 minutes of silence in solidarity with National Walkout Day.

We sat together in a park by our office, with others who were there for the same reason. Our group included a group of students from the local high school.

I sat with tears streaming down my face, embarrassed by my occasional sniffles. The noise of the city surrounded us while in the park the silence was deafening.

I thought about all the people who have been senselessly killed because of our lack of proper gun control in this country.

I looked at the kids from the local school and thought about how young they all are. Babies. Adorable with all the teenage awkwardness normal of the age, complete with fashion and style choices that will make them cringe when, years from now, they revisit photos of themselves during their high school experience.

I wanted to move through their group and crush each of them in my arms in turn. I longed to shelter them, protect them, make sure they are allowed to grow and flourish and age.

I sat with tears streaming down my face, embarrassed by my occasional sniffles, for seventeen minutes. One minute for each of the people killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School one month ago today.

I thought about all the people who have been senselessly killed because of our lack of proper gun control in this country.

One of the people out in the park with us today had a sign. A simple sign but a beautiful sign. It had one word on it.

“ENOUGH.”

2 thoughts on “Musings on National Walkout Day

  1. Oh, I know what you mean about wanting to hug every single one of them. *sigh* That is ALL I want to do – the mama bear in me wants to stand up and shout for them, shield them, and hug them all (which I realize would be weird and probably creepy in reality). I can’t wait to read more of your writing!

    • YES to the creepy factor.

      What I didn’t have the courage to say in the post was that I not only wanted to hug each of them, but I had vivid fantasies about cradling each of them across my lap, in my arms, hugging each one’s head into my shoulder and squeezing their bodies close to me as if they were actual babies.

      It was a First Thought, quickly suppressed by a Second Thought that said, “You’re a creepy old lady for even thinking of doing that to these almost-adults sitting in front of you.”

      I’m trying to learn to own and honor First Thoughts rather than suppressing them so I will confess to you now that a not small part of me longed to hold each of the almost-adults outside with me yesterday as though they were infants. I didn’t know any of them personally but I looked at them and longed to sweep them into my arms.

      Maybe sometimes it’s okay to be a creepy old lady.

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