Look for the Helpers #MSDStrong!

We are beyond shocked and saddened over the Parkland school shooting yesterday. We live in Parkland (about a block away from the school) and lot of our good friends live in Parkland as well. We know several teachers, coaches, and kids in the area especially our friend’s kids that go to that school. With each hour that goes by we learn about someone else we know who has been affected.

We heard helicopters and ambulances all afternoon into the night from my office. Luckily, our son Tyler goes to a different school down the street. However, other parents were not as lucky. I scrambled to pick up my kid along with every other parent. As I tried to get back into my development with Tyler safely in the car, I looked over and saw a couple sobbing by the side of the road, people looking frantically for their child, I saw people leaving their cars right where they were stopped, I saw the SWAT team flood the streets as the local police redirected the traffic, and I saw triage tents set up right on our corner. As my 6 year old son noticed the intensity of the situation, he got teary eyed and asked what happened. As a Mom and a human being, how do we keep explaining this to our kids?!

I remembered this quote. It’s an oldie but a goodie from Mr. Rodgers.. and it seemed to help. “Look for the Helpers”
Fred Rogers often told this story about when he was a boy and would see scary things on the news: “My mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers’ It seemed to diminish the doom and gloom of a scary situation.

I know people say this is not the time to discuss guns. Bullshit. Enough is enough! This is the exact time to discuss guns. How many people need to die to force our politicians to ignore the temptation of accepting gun lobbyist money and finally take action, create change and implement common sense and new gun control policies. Yesterday’s tragedy hits WAY to close to home and it wasn’t just that one day. It’s this morning, it’s tomorrow morning, it’s in the weeks to come as families try to move forward. As helicopters were still hovering overhead for the 11pm news last night and continue to this morning (right outside our window), my husband and I struggle with how a young, troubled person can obtain a gun let alone an assault rifle.

This is the 18th school shooting this year alone. It’s only February. Are we getting numb to this?! These are real families just like yours that are impacted for the rest of their lives. This is where my son will go to middle and high school.

To say I grabbed my son a little tighter yesterday and this morning is a massive understatement.

Today my long time friend from sleep away camp is grieving because her fellow teacher, Scott was shot protecting the kids in his class. Our good friend’s daughter was in one of the classrooms as all of this occurred and is in shock today. It’s just the beginning, we will hear more each hour with every text, every phone call and every update.

We need to change this culture in America and I encourage everyone to spread the word that change is NEEDED and there is a better America out there for our children!

– Jackie

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