You love me in all my mistakes;
You will love me for what I am.”
― Luffina Lourduraj
This week I read a book that resonated deep within my soul. It was a book that was about a number of things, but mostly it told the story of a mother's love. As I have mentioned through the years, I have had several interesting and oft times difficult jobs. My sister Judy and I ran our own small business for a few years. I spent some time as the public relations director of a branch of a major non-profit organization. I was a public speaker for about five years, and of course I have spent the bulk of my adult years teaching. Without a doubt, the most difficult (and for me, most rewarding) title I ever carried was MOM. The love that I feel for Michael and Beth is immeasurable, and the pain that I feel when they are hurting is often a physical ache.
Like me, Sue Klebold spent many years raising two children. She made sure that they were fed and sheltered, she rubbed their tummies when they ate too much and she dried their tears whenever she saw their pain. Most importantly, she and her husband tried to teach them right from wrong, and yet one April morning her teenage son, Dylan, and his friend Eric entered their high school and started shooting. The final toll was thirteen dead and twenty-four others wounded, and then the two boys turned the guns on themselves. Suicide in the worst possible way.
The world quickly pointed their blaming fingers at the parents of these boys, and Columbine High School will forever carry their scars, but how much responsibility really does lay at the feet of parents. It is comforting to assign blame, because then we believe that we would have been able to control things...this could never happen to us. After all, children show signs when they are troubled. If a mother or father really pays attention, they will recognize the signs.
If working with teenagers through the years taught me one thing, it is that they are ALWAYS showing signs of something. They are often moody, have strange friends and keep all kinds of secrets from their parents. Mike and I were once discussing children who deceive parents. I remarked that although Beth did at times, he didn't tend to lie. His response..."Sure I did mom. I was just better at it."
In her book, A Mother's Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy, Sue Klebold explains her family's attempt to live through every parent's worst nightmare, the loss of a child, compounded with a horror too terrible to ever imagine. They did it with quiet aplomb, grieving and trying to make amends for something that was out of their control. We, as a society, need to stop looking for who to blame when the unthinkable happens and spend more time supporting each other in an attempt to help our children recognize how miraculous their world really can be.
Speaking of miracles, Sean Chercover's book, The Trinity Game (The Daniel Byrne Trilogy Book 1) really had me thinking about the unimaginable. Daniel Byrne is a top advocate in The Vatican's secret Office of the Devil's Advocate, and it is his job to debunk or prove true supposed miracles presented to the Church. Through his many years of investigation, he never found a genuine miracle and didn't expect any different results this time. His estranged uncle, a televangelist con man, now claims to be able to predict the future. Interestingly enough, he seems to be doing just that.
Both of these books kept me thinking this week, and I strongly recommend them to you.
As always complete reviews of these books follow this blog.