The recent tragedy of the Boston Marathon Explosion hit me like a ton of bricks. In fact, as I write this the news is just hours old. I am heartsick. I am wrecked. I can hardly see between the salty tears.
This is my husband. My best friend. My marathoner.
This is my baby. The joy of my life. My heart beating on the outside of my body.
My marathoner is racked with guilt tonight. He’s solemn as he watches the news. “It could have been us babe…it really could have,” he whispers quietly.
It takes almost every ounce of courage to whisper back, “I know.”
The what “ifs” consume me, but the what happened fills me with despair- the confirmed two who were wrong place at the wrong time. They were probably there with their parents or friends. Patriot’s Day (or Marathon Monday) is a BIG FREAKING DEAL in Boston. It’s the best day of all to be a Bostonian so of course they were there. Maybe they caught the Red Sox game first and made their way from Fenway Park down to the finish line. I hope. No, I pray that they died quickly and thought this was the AWESOMEST DAY EVER.
I’ve crossed that finish line a hundred times myself. I know right where it is. I’ve crossed it with girlfriends on the way out to get drinks, I’ve crossed it with boyfriends (including the one who turned into my husband) on dates, I’ve crossed it to go shopping, and I’ve crossed while showing out of town guests the city that I fell in love with.
Whether you’re there by circumstance or birth, once a Bostonian always a Bostonian. There’s a reason why the Sox have such a presence on their road games. We’re a unique breed- scrappy, friendly in our own way, a fan of our teams even with they suck (lucky for us that hasn’t been in A LONG TIME), but most importantly 100% heart 100% of the time. If you saw the video of the explosion, you’d see it plain as day. The first thing I noticed was the people who were running towards the blast instead of away from it.
Humanity who chooses to run towards the chaos instead of from it, just in case they can make a tiny difference and help.
The temple in Brookline that opened their doors after the blast happened. Who let the marathoners make calls on their land line to loved ones. Who fed them and gave them water.
The runners who ran straight to Mass General to give blood.
The off duty policeman who kissed his wife goodbye and said “sorry, duty calls,” as he walked out of the door to rush to the scene.
The preschooler who said to me quietly after I told him, “Mama, did anyone get dead today?”
“That’s terrible. Maybe I can color a picture to send to their family. What a terrible thing,” he responds.
Good people. Doing good things for no other reason than to help their neighbor.