You beautiful, mysterious, storied city. Your history, your culture, your lights, your love, your charm. Your people’s strength, their pride, their community.
Your heartbreak. Our heartbreak.
As I sit here, stunned, I am grasping for words and aching for the people of Paris.
I cannot comprehend how this kind of cold-blooded hate, directed at innocents, could be something agreed upon, planned, executed by a group. This was not one madman; this was not one random act of passion. How can mankind be so divided?
What is this disregard for and sickening dismissal of life?
My chest is heavy and my eyes full of tears, thinking about the families who have had their fathers, mothers, husbands, wives, friends, and children taken. Their lives have been stolen. Their futures have been snatched away.
I cannot help but think back to the evenings I sat, delighted, taking in the beauty of Paris from a sidewalk café, laughing with family and friends. I felt safe. Just as I feel safe when I sit on a patio in my own city, laughing with friends, sharing life and love.
So what now?
When we’re enjoying life’s moments – dinners, concerts, and sporting events – we’re with our families, friends, and children – we feel safe. But should we? When we kiss our children goodnight, should we kiss them once more and hold them tighter? When we see friends and neighbors and those we love, should we tell them how much they mean to us? Just in case? Should we give a little more grace to others in our lives, and a little more grace to ourselves? Just in case?
I believe so.
Tonight, I am reminded that life is fragile, and life is unfair, and terrible things happen that we cannot plan for. In my sadness I am holding my family and saddened for the mothers who cannot. I am kissing and singing with my son. I am embracing and reaching out to the ones I love. I am thankful for every friend I hear is safe, and heartbroken for Paris.
I am praying for Paris, and praying for peace.