This week will mark the 4-month anniversary. Four months that have elapsed, and yet some days feel like no time has passed, like it just happened. Some days it feels like an eternity.
Over the past couple weeks I've been feeling a different portion of my healing process, that I wasn't sure I'd ever achieve - moving forward, slowly. I am starting to see a place where I do things that I did before in my life, however in just a much more balanced way.
December 14, 2012, ended the life as I knew it, in so, so many ways. I won't go into all the things I've been doing the past 4 months, as I feel a major sense of protection for everyone in our community. Even now as I write this, I have emerging and conflicting feelings - anger, bitterness, deep sadness for the gravity of loss so many here are experiencing, including myself. Yet, I'm beginning to feel my own need to get back to some of the things that make me who I am, to the things that fufill my heart. It's still a heavy feeling because there is such a sense of anguish and guilt for doing anything that takes me back to my pre-December 14th life. I just have to keep reminding myself, the mantra that our town has embraced "We Are Newtown. We Choose Love." If I am to live my life by that mantra, I have to continue doing what I love and make certain that I learn to balance that with those things that my "new" life requires of me and my time, which could easily be a full-time job. It won't be easy, that I know.
This past weekend, I went to a crop for about 5 hours. It was a 3-day event. I knew I wasn't ready for that kind of marathon of scrapping, so I just went on Saturday for a few hours. I hadn't moved one single thing off my desk or craft are since December. Everything was covered in Christmas product and unfinished projects. I gathered what I could, and two photos I hadn't scrapped yet, and made my way to the event. I was so glad to have this as my first scrapping experience since - in a neutral place, not my area where I was when I received the news. It took me a good couple hours to get into my first page, but after 5 hours I was able to nearly complete 2 layouts. It was progress.
I will leave you with this. On the morning of 12/14, at the time that I got the infamous "reverse 911" call from our school district telling us that there was a shooting, this is what I was working on. I've only shared this with a very few people. As those children were being murdered in their classroom, these are the words that came to me.
I have clung on to the fact that these are the words I was focused on during those awful few minutes for those poor babies. I'm not sure if it was a sign that all would be alright, but I choose to believe that it means there is room for hope.
Lastly, I just want to say "Thank you" to everyone who left me comments, prayers, thoughts throughout this terrible, terrible time for me, my family and my community. Thank you for sending cards, letters, snowflakes, toys, quilts, scarves, pillowcases, poems, artwork, resources, your childrens' artwork, handmade hearts, handprints and the thousands and thousands of other things that you all sent to our community. I will tell you from personal experience, it was tremendously appreciated and so, so overwhelming. The outpouring was nothing short of a landfall of love, from all over the country and the world. Like nothing I've ever experienced.