Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Unopened Gifts

As I shop for and wrap up Christmas presents for my kids I can't help but think about all the gifts that will remain unopened this season. Dolls, racecar sets, video games and bicycles that will all remain under an unlit tree. All are reminders of children who once filled their homes with laughter and love. All are reminders of what was taken so quickly, and heartlessly. All are reminders of how Christmas will never be the same ever again for their families and friends.
I don't write this today to depress you, or because it's the politically correct thing to do. I don't even want to say that we should all remember how blessed we are, because that is obvious. I write this for the parents of those 20 children, to let them know that we are all with them. It's the nightmare that every decent parent fears most: to lose a child. I heard someone start to say something at a child's funeral once "Well, it's better this way, imagine if..." I had to interrupt. There's no "better" here. There's no worse. It's just horrible all around. I know sometimes people are well meaning, and they just don't know what else to say, but I think the best thing is not to say anything. I think the only thing you can say is: I'm here for you. I'm here with you.
So that's what I wanted to say to the parents in Newtown, Connecticut, and I know I speak for my family and friends: We're here with you. Our hearts and prayers are with you too.

Caren E. Salas