Jessica Latshaw

musician. writer. dancer.

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candles.

Posted By on June 15, 2016 in I Lift My Eyes Up, Loved Ones, motherhood, Thoughts and Feelings | 0 comments

I adore my girl. And I keep thinking about fifty people who were loved by at least one other–probably more–as much as I love Charlee. Who were special, like Charlee is special. It’s so sad; I’m so sad. To say it is wrong is a gross understatement–there are some situations where words just aren’t enough; tears fill the gap when words cannot, I suppose.

I think about how the tragedy happened in Orlando, how Disney World is down the street, their songs and smiles and forced cheer suddenly wrong. It makes no sense that the world goes on, business as usual. That coffee shops opened on Sunday morning, the lines out of Starbucks just as long as always.

But then I remember a scene from a movie. The Grinch had finally stolen what he had deemed to be Christmas, and sat back from his lonely perch to watch the Whos cry about the bereft world they’d woken to. What he didn’t expect was the unity that came from the loss. The great, unbroken circle as the Whos stand hand in hand; the sounds of singing and the feeling of love despite–or maybe even because of–loss. The way they keep on living–gracefully, even. I love that scene so much.

I understand loss of life is a lot more serious than mere decorations. I get that entirely, and it’s not a perfect comparison. But I do believe the way I–one who has no weapons, nor any plans to get any–can fight terror and hate is to love others. To shock the world by continuing to love as relentlessly as some choose to harm. To practice the freedom that we’ve been given and use it to build something that cannot be torn down with weapons.

Let’s help each other. Mourn with each other. Be involved in each others’ healing. And maybe by thinking about the reason we’re still here, by living purposefully and choosing love again and again, we will honor those who are no longer with us, no longer able to stand in line at Starbucks or go home for the holidays. And maybe Instead of simply lighting a candle in church for our loved ones, our loved ones can help motivate us to *be* candles in the darkness.

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