I never did one of those New Year’s resolution posts. I knew it could never be as good as this one.
But I have a resolution. Not to lose the baby weight. I already accomplished that with a steady diet of peppermint patties and Starbucks’ lattes. I have no idea why it worked. I’d like to exercise again before my legs actually atrophy but I’d still opt for pedicure or a nap if given 30 minutes alone. And I’d like my kids to stop picking their noses. But that seems like more of a resolution for them instead of me.
So here’s mine…
To worry less.
Because I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed but worrying doesn’t really change the future one way or the other. It just sort of fills my life with stress and anxiety. But the thing about first becoming a parent in 2004 is that suddenly there was this being. A little peanut that I immediately loved more than myself and I was desperate to prevent anything bad from happening to her. And then I had three more peanuts, who I adore just as passionately.
But all my worrying doesn’t protect them. Because apparently, I don’t control the universe.
I once asked Rick why he didn’t worry more.
“Why should I worry? You have it covered,” he replied.
Great. All my worrying frees him from worrying. Can’t I have a different job? Like chocolate malt ball eater?
So I have this new resolution which I have no idea how to keep because how do you force yourself to worry less – and then it happens.
The shooting in Arizona.
And among the dead is a 9-year-old girl.
A third grader who just wanted to meet her Congresswoman that day.
Christina Taylor Green.
You see, I’m absolutely confident that her parents made sure her teeth were brushed, that she wore a helmet when she biked, that she looked both ways before running across the street and didn’t talk to strangers. But all their love and care taking couldn’t protect her.
Not from a mentally ill madman with a handgun at a stupid Safeway.
9 years. Not even close to enough time with their little peanut.
My heart just aches for her family.
And the other families.
And of course, I worry about my own.
So what are we supposed to do? As parents? As Americans? As human beings? How do we live without fear that those we love the most will suddenly be taken away from us?
I don’t have the answer and I have no idea how to keep my resolution.
So today, at 11 am, I will take a moment, with the rest of the nation, to remember the victims of the Arizona shooting.
Because that’s the only thing I can think to do.