Words

17 Dec

This past Friday an unthinkable tragedy occurred in Newtown, CT.  I can’t even wrap my mind around it, so I’ve only been taking it in little pieces at a time.  When I think I can handle it, I watch 5 minutes of the news and then I have to turn it off again.  It doesn’t make any sense to me how something like this could happen so I’ve been trying to focus on things that do make sense.

Over the past few weeks A has really taken off with her language development.  She went from repeating Dada over and over again to saying new words almost every day.  It is so amazing being able to watch someone learn to communicate.  She has no idea how far this skill will get her in life; all she knows is that its fun to mimic Mom and Dad.  She has also become very proud of herself when she asks for something and we understand it.  One of her favorite things to say is “more milk” when her cup is empty.  Her eyes light up when we take the cup to the refrigerator to refill it.  She also “says” many things that we don’t understand.  Often times she becomes frustrated when she repeats a “word” over and over again, but I don’t understand what it is that she is asking for.

While I am absolutely delighted that she is learning to talk, it also scares me a little.  Understanding the meaning of words means that one day soon I’ll have to explain to her why terrible things happen.  I’ll have to use those same words that she is so proud of to tell her about difficult things that no one ever wants their child to know about.  I hope that I have the strength, when the time comes, to use these same words to restore her faith.  I hope I can teach her how powerful words really are and how a few simple words can change a person’s day.

My heart is so heavy this week.  The only thing I can think to do is to focus on the aspects I have control over.  I can control the type of language that my daughter hears and learns to speak.  I can teach her that her words can be used to build people up or to break them down. I can teach her that even though we have to use our words to talk about painful things, we can also use our words to give each other hope that the future can be different.

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2 Responses to “Words”

  1. Laura December 17, 2012 at 1:10 pm #

    Beautifully said…It always hits close to home when a crime is committed against a child. And when there are no words, we can “put our legs in their bed” and hold tight to let them know you would do anything to keep them safe. She is blessed to have a Mom who will always be there when life doesn’t make sense.

  2. Hannah December 17, 2012 at 7:27 pm #

    As a teacher, this event hit me really hard. I can’t even imagine how it must feel as a parent…

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