An Outlet

I was in 7th grade when began I writing down my thoughts in an old red binder. I eventually upgraded to larger and more sturdy binders that held my thoughts comprised primarily on sports and girls.

I’m nearing 2000 posts on this blog, and what many people may not realize is that I many posts I’ve written have been for the same reason I scribbled down my thoughts in those binders: to provide an outlet for my thoughts when my world made no sense.

As reports of the senseless shooting began filling my Twitter stream, I sat at my computer thinking about my kids who were already at school.

Except my oldest son, Lincoln, who will turn ten the day after Christmas.

He stayed home today from school because he wasn’t feeling well. While I spent the morning working my way through my inbox, he rested on the couch. Each time I checked on him I found him playing games on his iPod Touch.

I was waiting for him to turn on the TV where he would have seen reports and live footage from the school. If I heard the TV turn on, I’d go in and watch a few minutes with him and answer any questions. I don’t know if this would have been the best decision. Like many parenting decisions, I shoot from the hip more often than I should.

But I never heard the click of the remote.

And I’m glad it worked out that way because I have no answers for him. I can’t explain why someone would intentionally kill children. The cowardly shooter died so we’ll probably never fully understand why he turned to violence.

My son will surely ask what happened today and I’ll do my best to explain it at a topical level. But I’ll be at a loss for words in helping him understand why it happened.

Today I feel like that boy is 7th grade jotting down his thoughts while trying to make sense of his world. But today I understand there’s no making sense of the senseless.