One minute Dylan was telling his favorite joke, a combination of three openings and punchlines mashed together into something that brightens his eyes every time. He loves it because we laugh, and then he laughs, and we all laugh a little more.
The next moment his popsicle was on the floor, his face washed with tears and a little bit of orange popsicle. After consoling a momentarily inconsolable boy, I pulled out my floor steamer to really be certain to clean all the stickiness.
My steamer heats up quickly, and I was able to give the dining room and living room a quick clean-up before the kids tired of listening to their own jokes.
I wish cleaning up all messes could be so simple.
The shootings in Sandy Hook left me with more questions than answers.
But I hope we can all take our collective heavy hearts and open them a little and ask the right questions. I want to yell that there is an easy solution to this mess, a steam cleaner to sanitize the darkness that allowed this to happen to the most innocent of hearts.
I want to yell about assault weapons or mental health care or security. I want to blame video games or violence in movies. But there is no single answer, no one thing that will prevent something like this from happening again.
But we need to talk about this. We need to quiet the accusations and bring concrete ideas to the table. Unfortunately when we most need it, discourse seems to be shoved to the side by the loudest voices.
In The Night Before Christmas, the reindeer aren’t stymied by the limitations of the ground: “When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.”
We owe it to our popsicle spillers and joke tellers to find the words to frame the important questions. Maybe then we will be able to find answers that can take us above our differences and find answers that prevent this from happening again.
Do you have a hard time staying calm when discussing something in which you strongly believe?