With the tragedy in Connecticut it hardly seems appropriate to write about anything else.  The whole world (or at least the US) stops to reflect and try to make sense of what happened.  I appreciate all the commentators, tweets, posts, and blogs tonight saying “don’t let this be another debate about gun control.  We’re all losers for this today”.  Over and over again I would here the DJ say “hug your kids tonight”.  And I couldn’t agree more.

About the same time that the shooter walked through the doors of Sandy Hook Elementary I was picking up the last of my presents for my boys.  There are parents tonight who will go home and look at presents under the tree that will never be opened.  All of a sudden none of the gifts matter.  None of the hours spent at work matter.  What mattered today was keeping the promise to pick up a pizza and a movie to watch with my boys.

Yet this morning was not smooth sailing in our household.  The boys were fighting, not cooperating, and I was yelling and threatening as we tried to get out the door and to school on time.  The drive to school was silent as we all calmed down.  No matter how frustrating the morning routine is, I have always made a point to say “I love you” as the boys get out of the car.  I wouldn’t be able to live with myself had a shooter entered my school today and those not be the last words by boys hear from me.

Given the time of year that this has happened I can’t help but look at it as a sadly profound realization to keep our holiday season in perspective.  Nothing is more important this time of year than being with those you love.  But more importantly, letting them know you love them.

Hug your kids.

Hug your parents.

Hug your friends and neighbors.

Hug your cats and dogs.


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