As a mother. As a wife. As a woman. As a person. I am horrified at our world today. Every time I go online, watch tv, or read the paper, I see hate.
In the midst of the Harambe the gorilla tragedy, all I could see was hate. Hate towards everyone involved in what is an awful situation. Hate towards the mother whose son fell and hate towards the zookeepers who made an impossible choice in an emergency situation. There is value in any life, and there was no easy choice. Yet, people are not focusing on just how truly sad the situation is – they are just focusing on anger and hatred.
On the heels of that came the devastating shootings in Orlando. Maybe I am naive and overly optimistic, but I believed that we, as a human race, were past that kind of unfounded hatred towards each other.
It makes me scared for my children growing up. I desperately wish I could keep them safe and protected forever. I’m sad that at some point their world will be opened up to the tragedy and hate that I see. As parents, we have all of these hopes and dreams for our children, but in this moment, all I hope is for a different world for Andrew and Lily. A world where this hatred in society hasn’t become a generalized part of our everyday lives.
Like any mother, I want me children to be surrounded by love and happiness their entire life. It makes me think “what can we do, as parents, to change this?” I will try to do my part by instilling love and optimism in my children. To teach equality and kindness, to encourage them to be themselves, and accept others who may be different from them. It may not change things in the world, but it is a start.
I am a die-hard glass half-full, optimistic, positive-thinking kind of girl, and try to see the positive in any situation no matter how tragic. When I reflect on the Orlando shootings, the first thing I think of is the community, as I did after the Paris attacks. The wonderful communities and supports that emerged in Orlando’s darkest hour. The love, support, and peace that people offered one another. As Fred Rogers’ mother once said to him, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” So in this time when I sit here sad and scared for the future and the world my children will live in, I think of those helpers. Those helpers who give me hope and optimism for the future.