Alone but Strong

Single mother of two beautiful girls trying to rebuild my life. One day at a time.


The past days have been very hard. We live 15 miles from the school in Newtown, where the horrible shootings happened on Friday. My daughters, a kindergartener and a first grader, were in school when we first hear that there had been a shooting. At first, it didn’t sound as if it was so bad so I went up to the school for library as I always do on Fridays. I saw both my daughters, took the younger one with me home after her day was over and it wasn’t until about an hour later that we learned that there were 18 children dead (at the time the two that had been transported to the hospital were not known to be dead). I didn’t keep the news on, watch on the computer or upstairs when my little one was playing. Then my ex came and picked the younger one up and they went to the school to pick up the older one, as always. We had decided not to say anything to them at that point.

They came home this morning, blissfully unaware of what had happened. But I felt like I had to tell them before they left and heard from somebody else. We had gotten a message that police would be at all schools indefinitely so I wanted to explain why. I gave them as few details as possible and told them that they were safe. I answered some questions but they seemed to take it OK. Young enough to believe that since the gun man was dead, this could never happen again.

Then, I had to take them up to the bus stop and put them on the bus. Let me tell you, that was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.

After that me and a friend went to another friend’s house to talk. One of them has older children, her 12-year-old had asked her yesterday: “What if there is a copy-cat?” How do you tell your children that they are safe and that nothing will ever happen when you don’t believe that to be true? We discussed back and forward on what to say to them, should we try to teach them to hide, play dead? Living so close we all know someone who had a child in that school or who was killed. It is absolutely horrible and it’ll take a long time before I feel safe again.

I can’t wait for them to come home!

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  1. My prayers go out to you and yours.

    • Thank you. I’m still glad I said something this morning because there were apparently lots of talk among her friends in school. Unfortunately she came home knowing many more details than she should…

  2. Jet

    I think it is good that you talked with them. I may be an oversharing parent (my daughters know a lot of things that most 3 and 5 year olds don’t) but I think knowledge is power (age-appropriately). The same way that I’d instruct them to play dead if they were under attack by a wild animal and couldn’t flee I might instruct them to do the same if under attack by a gunman. I’m not certain as to how I would approach the topic, but since they already know too much, I don’t think it’d hurt to educate them on what to do should it ever occur. We send our love to you and yours.

  3. So sorry for the ones who lost their innocence, the ones who lost their lives and those surrounding them, may we hold them close in our prayers. Hope you and your family are somehow able to celebrate this holiday season. The angels are there close to you and others…

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