Three days have passed since the terrorist attacks on Paris first ripped us open. But three days isn’t long enough to stop thinking Not this. Not again.
Three days isn’t long enough to heal. It isn’t long enough to turn to other matters. It’s not even long enough to wrap your minds around what exactly happened? Who was behind it? Where are the perpetrators hiding? There will never be enough time for Why? Or How could someone possibly hate a people, a nation, a world so much that this seems reasonable?
Three days is almost long enough for some of those who couldn’t look, who couldn’t watch, to peek from inside their hastily constructed sanctuaries. I’ve talked to so many people who just couldn’t, who had been traumatized by similar attacks of violence, or who wore their fragility, their scars in other ways. A few were seeking forgiveness? No…permission…to look away. To protect themselves. It’s okay. It’s okay to care for yourself first. To be responsible to your own mental, emotional, psychological well-being.
Three days isn’t nearly long enough to understand the small minds of some critics, those who bashed the strict gun control laws of France, or who blamed the victims for allowing in refugees. Do they truly not see that the refugees were running from the very people perpetrating these horrific crimes? Would they persecute New Yorkers who no longer felt safe living in the city after 9/11?
Three days of manhunts and bombings and talk of invasion. Three days of rumors and breaking news and endless news cycles to hide from the kids. Three days of heartache and overtime at work and wondering if this world is just going to keep sliding further and further towards a place where this is just what happens.
Three days without answers. Three days without expecting any.
Three days closer to a new “normal.”
Three days ain’t nothin’.