Sunday, December 30, 2012

Sandy Hook Memorial Cumulative Half (Virtual): Day 1

What does a parent of a Kindergartner--or a human being, for that matter--say about what happened on 14 December 2012 in Newtown, CT? How does one begin to comprehend? How does one respond?

I've begun half a dozen posts regarding this event and erased them all out of frustration of not being able to say what I really mean. I hug my child and watch her for signs of distress. I continue to participate in our community and vote my conscience. But like others, somehow I want to help and extend my sympathy, even though I know it doesn't change a lot for those families.

I respond with the things I love in an attempt to give myself.

This week, I will be participating in the Sandy Hook Memorial Virtual Half Marathon; I will be running it cumulatively, which means I will try to complete 13.1 miles of running total in one week. The entry fee goes 100% to the United Way of Newton--that way funds will be directed to where they are needed the most. I do not pretend that the running itself is helping families, communities, and/or first responders; that part is only to make me feel better--like I'm "earning" it. I could say that I'm praying while I'm running (and I am), but I do have some perspective here.

I will also be participating in 600 Monsters Strong by knitting and donating a stuffed monster to comfort a child. The organizers are well aware of the influx of stuffed animals to the Newtown community, so they are also working with nonprofit organizations that work with children who have been victims of gun violence. One way or another, the creature I create will be put into the arms of a child who needs it. I will post pictures of my progress along with my distance report.

My goal is that the final run will be to the post office to send the monster on its way..