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The Loud and the Quiet

What an incredibly shitty week.  I don’t know, is there really any other way to describe this week?  A week where you not only lose 20 children and 7 adults in an act of violence, but you then need to wade through the endless, pointless commentary by anyone and everyone in the media; the idiotic Facebook status updates throwing blame to every corner of the earth; the infuriating statements of how a seemingly constant stream of violence could be avoided if we just put a random person’s half-baked plan into effect; as well as explaining the fact that horrific acts of violence exist in the world to up-until-now innocent children?

That was my week online.  Even the good stuff, the helpful stuff such as the beautiful pictures of the children lost, was TOO MUCH.  We used to be able to process quietly or emerge ourselves into the information based on our personal needs, and now it feels like the volume dial is stuck on 10.  The only way to take a break is to unplug entirely — from the Internet, from radio, from the television.  Which isn’t necessarily a terrible thing.

And then there is the opposite.  I lost a childhood friend this week.  It is difficult to reconcile the boy I know in my heart with the man he became later in life.  All I wanted was to spend a few minutes with other people who remembered him as I do; walking through the dirt at camp in white athletic socks when it became popular one summer to walk barefoot, slow dancing at Bar Mitzvahs, playing “I Never” at sixteen and falling asleep like puppies on Pam’s floor, being the Great One to his Pain (especially when he ad libbed my lines when I walked offstage in fear, helpfully saying, “I’m sure if my sister were here she would say ‘My Brother’s a Pain…”), being the only boy in our dance class as he strutted amongst us to Billy Joel’s “Pressure.”  I have only happy memories of him, and I feel so incredibly lucky that I do.

And I found that on Facebook, which made my head finally feel quiet when it was screaming so loudly at me while I was unplugged.


1 a { 12.20.12 at 11:53 am }

I’m sorry for your loss.

And it has been a shitty week. Let’s hope next week will be better.

2 loribeth { 12.20.12 at 12:02 pm }

Mel, I am so sorry about your friend. 🙁 We’re too young to be losing our childhood friends. (Aren’t we?)

Dh has been watching CNN & Piers Morgan every night this week (& yelling at the TV set). He’s also been in a bad mood all week. I can’t help but feel there’s a connection there. :p

Here’s hoping for something better next week.

3 mrs.captain { 12.20.12 at 12:11 pm }

why are you only counting the school victims? Do you not consider the 27th person, his mother, a victim?

4 Tiara { 12.20.12 at 12:15 pm }

I’m sorry for the loss of your friend…definitely a shitty week.

5 Katie { 12.20.12 at 12:44 pm }

I agree – it’s been a shitty week. I am so sorry for your loss. xo

6 Sharon { 12.20.12 at 12:49 pm }

Gosh, Mel, I couldn’t agree more, and interestingly, I, too, lost an old friend this week and found solace on Facebook there among mutual friends amidst all the school shooting-related postings.

If these problems were so simply solved, I’d think we would’ve solved them already. I’m sorry.

7 Jendeis { 12.20.12 at 1:01 pm }

I’m sorry for your loss.

8 Kathy { 12.20.12 at 1:39 pm }

It has been a rough week on so many levels. Tuesday was the first anniversary of my cousin’s death, of course all the stuff related to Sandy Hook, the flu bug has been running through out house and then this morning we woke up to more water in our basement (after we got a ton of rain last night, still no snow yet here in the Chicago area at all this season). I love our hew home, but it is such a money pit…

I am so sorry about your friend and so glad to hear that you have only happy memories of him. Holding you and all his loved ones close in my thoughts and prayers.

Wishing you and all of us a brighter and happier week to come. xoxo

9 Another Dreamer { 12.20.12 at 2:14 pm }

I’m sorry for your loss. And for how overwhelming this week has been.

10 marwil { 12.20.12 at 5:01 pm }

It’s been a rough week alright. I’m so sorry for your loss, on top of the tragedy and its intense media coverage, it has been hard to escape it all.

11 Kimberly { 12.20.12 at 8:15 pm }

I’m so sorry for your loss Mel. It’s been a long and exhaustive week and I’ve hit the point that I can’t read or watch anymore about those gruesome deaths. I’ve taken as much of a social media blackout as I can in regards to the deaths and I’ve taken to finding my own way to mourn their loss.

12 Battynurse { 12.20.12 at 8:32 pm }

I’m so sorry for your loss. It has been a long and shitty week in so many ways and while I know some media coverage is necessary it makes me nuts how they almost seem excited to have something to report,how this is all obamas fault and how if all the teachers were armed our world would be so much better. It’s all just making me nuts.

13 Justine { 12.20.12 at 11:22 pm }

I’m so sorry for your loss, Mel.

And we didn’t actually talk about grief appropriation, did we. But I’m glad we didn’t. I was grateful for laughter.

14 Thebluestbutterfly { 12.21.12 at 3:59 am }

The shooting has very quickly disappeared from the headlines.

15 Mali { 12.21.12 at 5:16 am }

Oh Mel, I’m so sorry you lost your friend this week of all weeks. But glad that you could remember the good times

16 JustHeather { 12.21.12 at 10:01 am }

I’m so sorry for your loss, Mel!

May the coming days be much better than this last week has been. (Thankfully we haven’t had much inundation here in Finland with the CO shootings. It’s been easier to unplug here.)

17 Amber { 12.21.12 at 12:31 pm }

I’m so sorry for the loss of your friend. It definitely has been a hard week. In addition to the Sandy Hook tragedy is the 2 people killed at the Clackamas Town Center Mall. I’m sorry you’ve had to experience the loss of a friend in the midst of all this tragedy.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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