Reflections on the Sadness of Newtown Connecticut USA

I don’t think I have ever shed so many tears.

The tragedy at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, USA just so hurts the heart.

For reasons I cannot define, I feel, like no doubt many others do, an extreme amount of grief when I hear of a child dying. But I have friends and know others, who will express shock and horror at a tragedy, but they don’t seem as deeply affected as I feel. I feel almost traumatized, helpless and an overwhelming sorrow. I will openly weep for ages.

Because I cannot comprehend what drives someone to murder an innocent little child.

I remember sitting in the public forum at Dallas Brooks Hall in Melbourne in 1990, a forum to lobby for changes to the law which was held after the brutal murder of 2 year old Daniel Valerio by his step-father Paul Aitken.

I can still see in my minds eye the photo of that dear little boy taken to show his bruises…but there he was, still with a tiny little smile on his face. It too, was heart-breaking.

As a result of Daniel’s death, the mandatory reporting law was passed in 1993.

I also remember sitting in a restaurant with one of my daughters in 2001, talking about my overwhelming sadness of a little Iraqi boy who had been brutally injured in the futile war that savaged that country and in which many innocent civilians died.

I just wanted to get on plane, fly over there and bring that little boy back to Australia so that he could get the best treatment in the world to repair the loss of his arms and legs blown off by a Coalition of the willing bomb.

And there is Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newton Connecticut.

I cannot even begin to comprehend the pain the parents and families of the little children and families of the teachers must be enduring.

To lose a child must be the most painful experience a parent can endure.

But to lose one so tragically through a senseless act of violence – would be more than one can bear.

I began thinking about those poor parents this morning.

I hope that they had sent each one of those dear little kids off to school with a kiss goodbye, and “I love you”, “have a good day!”

We all know what its like to hurry kids along to get ready for school, how they test are patience at times and I pray that not one of those parents sent their child to school with any semblance of anger or annoyance still simmering.

When a brutal act like this becomes news, and we react with shock and horror and inconsolable sadness, it does make one look back on ones own parenting.

Did we do a good enough job of raising our own kids?

Were we kind enough, gentle enough…did we love enough?

I know there were times when I certainly didn’t do a very good job.

In 1980, I came out of 7 years of domestic violence with 3 little children under 5.

There were the times when I was not a good parent.

We moved often as I followed my dream, my work, my desires – dragging my 3 children with me.

My children always had good food, lovely clothes, good schooling, more often than not lots and lots of love, but so often not good parenting.

There were times during those years when I allowed my personal and financial struggle, my frustration, my hurt, my unfulfilled ambition to taint my parenting.

To my now adult children, I can say – I am sorry for the times I was less kind, less caring, less gentle and less loving than I should have been.

By the grace of God you have all grown into beautiful, successful adults.

You have all had your own struggles but you have taught me so much about how to improve my ethics, not to use hurtful, harmful words, to allow you to be the adults you want to be.

You have taught me how to be a better person.

Sadly, the parents of Daniel Valerio and now 20 little 5 and 6 years in Newtown, Connecticut, will never have the opportunity to say that to the adults those precious little ones would have become.

You must hold your children close, love them, use kind words and gentleness to guide them through their lives because the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary has proven that you can have your children one minute and then they are gone the next. 

We can only hope that President Barack Obama has the strength, the will and the support from all members of Congress and the Senate to stop the insane madness that occurs in America far to often from ever happening again.

To all the parents who have tragically lost a child, especially those in Newton Connecticut I say this:

On the Wings of Love:

On the wings of love a beautiful soul has departed this world leaving behind a myriad of precious memories for loved ones to explore in times of reminiscence.

There will be moments when a sound, a glimpse, a note will softly caress the corner of your mind and a beautiful memory that has been peacefully sleeping there, will gently awaken and as it blossoms, the secret that will make you glow within will remind you that the wonder and magic of knowing that you were blessed to have known, touched, held and loved that beautiful soul here on earth is yours to treasure forever.


On The Wings Of Love

© Copyright 2006

Denise Allen

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