I haven't been able to blog about Sandy Hook. I've wanted to and I haven't. Something about blogging about Boston is helping me to do so.
I need to purge these demons the world keeps tossing into my house. And when I say my house, I mean the house of me.
I still can't really talk about Sandy Hook. At least not directly. And not for very long.
I co-op at my daughter's nursery school. I work in the classroom as a teacher's helper about twice a month. It's all kinds of wonderful. I get to spend time with my daughter (and observing my daughter) at school. I meet and get to know her classmates, teachers, and other parents. I help out and learn a whole lot. I also get a discount on tuition. Win-win-win-win-win.
Not too long ago, while co-oping, the director came into the classroom. Silent. Unobtrusive but fast. Ninja fast and stealthy. And she locked the doors. She then whizzed to the next classroom, I assumed to do the same. The kids playing missed it. I almost missed it. My daughter's teacher, calmly, smoothly, and very quickly locked the windows. The other co-oping parent and I rose like meerkats. Like the meerkats with the babies. We looked at each other. We looked at the teacher. We looked at the teacher's assistant. They told us with their eyes to be calm. To be alert. To stay calm.
I thought about Sandy Hook.
I watched the director pass outside the classroom windows behind a police officer. My lady J announced she needed to go to the bathroom. One of her friends strolled by me, humming. The blood pounding in my head made everything sound muffled and slow.
If anything goes down, put them all in the bathroom. They will barely all fit in there, but put them all in the bathroom and take as many bullets as you can.
That's all I could think about. I thought about you Sandy Hook.
Put them all in the bathroom and fight. Fight. Throw chairs. Don't give up. Take bullets. Protect the babies. Put them in the bathroom.
Our menace was a man who was gazing too long into the swimming pool down the road. He was taken away. No harm.
We were back to normal again in minutes. We all went home.
I thought about you Sandy Hook. I think about you Sandy Hook.
I'm so sorry. I promise I will never forget.
The morning of the Boston Marathon tragedy was the day I took my first run. Ever. Well, outside of being forced to in high school. I exercise on the treadmill but I've never "gone for a run" outside. I decided to out of familial logistical necessity. My morning schedule was going to change drastically for about five days. I didn't want to lose my treadmill time. I didn't want to change my husband's and daughter's morning routine which takes place in the room with the treadmill. I started thinking ahead to lady J's new preschool routine for the Fall. A routine quite similar to this five day change and thought - "Ok, I'll go for a run these next few days and see if it's something I can then implement in the Fall." I'll get up early. I'll get out of the house. I won't disrupt my family's routine. I'll get my exercise.
I went out and ran. Well, I did a lot of walking too. I kept making these basic discoveries about running and I kept thinking about how one day when I am an experienced runner these memories will be amusing. Don't carry all of your keys. The moving belt of the treadmill offers great motivation to keep running, frozen pavement does not. The air has smells that change. Misty rain feels good. There are muscles in your ankles you will meet for the first time. They will be testy about being awake. They will be excited to be called to duty. You breathe and sweat differently outside. You don't have to start fast.
I enjoyed my first run so much. It was about 6:15am when I started and although the sun was up, the sky was still gray. There was a bare tree ahead of me. Dark against the lightening sky. There was a bird sitting on a large, lone, branch. Dark like the tree. The bird could have been a gnarled bump if not for its distinctive, fowl, shape. It was like a living postcard: one of those you buy and consider framing instead of sending out. A part of me wanted to stop and just take it in for a moment, but I didn't want to stop running. Not stopping excited me forward. I enjoyed navigating the cracked and uneven pavement and not tripping. I'll be able to run and not look down so much eventually, I coached myself. I was starting to invest in the future of this already and that gave me a very satisfied feeling.
I walked back in the house kind of cocky. I went for a run. I went for a run. I recalled my husband's face when I told him the night before of my plan. There was a raise of one eyebrow. A slight smirk. A look of admiration? Yes, that was admiration. What is it about that idea? That phrase? Going for a run. Something about it. Seriousness. Focus. Endurance. Lone Wolf. Strength. Determination. Dedication. Drive. Olympiad.
A few hours later. Boston. I, not being a runner, did not know the marathon was scheduled for that day. That day that I got up and said to myself "This is a lame idea, I'll figure out another way to exercise." Then immediately chastised myself, got up, and went for a run.
I haven't been back for a run until today. This morning before apprehension of suspects was even beginning, I ran. And tonight with the second suspect in custody, I'm thinking about that coincidence of my first run and this last Boston Marathon.
Run Boston. Run runners. Run. Train. Train to come back. Run to Boston again. Run for those who can not return. Run for those who can not run. Do you see the sky? Don't you love that gray? Do you see that bird and that tree? Run. Run to, not from. Run. Glance down for the cracks and the uneven spots. Don't look down for long. Look up. See where you're going. Run. Run. Run. I'm running behind you. I'm here. Beginning. I'm beginning. I'm watching you. I see you. I'm with you. Run. My eyebrow is raised. I am smiling with a smirk. You are running. I watch in admiration. Run, Boston. Run. Do. Not. Stop. Running. Ever. Go. Go. Go. Go. Go. Go. Go. Go. Go for a run. Go for a run. Go for a run. Go for a run. Run.
So, today I took my little one to the White House Easter Egg Roll. Just me and my four year old. In very long lines, and then we were in! No, wait, another very long line. Now, we're in, and then there are the lines to do everything. And during the time we were waiting, mommy was texting and emailing and calling people, trying to put the 2013 - 2014 season together (which I hope to finalize and announce soon), rescheduling sitters, trying to schedule them for new gigs that were coming up and, and, and, and,..... At one point, I wanted to cry. I didn't want to have four-way-split focus, I didn't want to feel like I wasn't experiencing anything but stress.
So, I stopped and I didn't. I'm pretty sure it was Lady J. We were waiting in the second wrap-around-theme-park line just to get in and I noticed her pleased, quiet, patience at a time when I was losing mine. Then I noticed how blue the sky was. How the air, although still pretty crisp, was starting to feel like Spring. And then I stopped and thought about the fact that I was emailing and texting and calling people because I had work. It was working out that I was going to be an employed actor. And um........yeah, the line I was waiting in was to go and play on the White House Lawn. So.......the stress was real, is real. The tears, that never quite flowed, were justified. I stand behind them. I caught a lucky break in my own mind, if that makes sense. At least that's the way I can express it right now. I caught a lucky break and a glimpse of light. Light from my little one and I grabbed it and I came up out of the dark. Wow, this is too dramatic....oh well, gonna keep with it.....
I came up out of the dark and had a lovely, stressful, exhausting, wonderful, frustrating, exciting day with my girl. A great adventure. And I got a pix with my favorite super-hero, WordGirl. Score. I would post it, but I am cheesing more than Lady J. Love the pix, but no.
It is always complex, isn't it? It's accepting the complexity that's the trick, huh? I think, yeah. I think.
I have in the past been anti-blog, the way I was anti-text, the way my mom was anti-microwave. I think she still is. But, I text like a fiend, now. So, seems natural I should try blogging. Besides that, folks say that as a "maturing" actress of color, with a hubby and a kid, I have some interesting things to say. And since I write the way I talk....