Cpl. Nathan Cirillo died this week while standing guard at Canada’s National War Memorial.
Like the RCMP officers who lost their lives in Moncton this summer, what happened in Ottawa does not make sense. Violence for the sake of violence. It is not a comforting thought.
We keep hearing about these horrific stories happening here and around the world. Of ISIS and shootings, and war.
It’s terrifying. It’s especially terrifying when you love people in this world and you don’t want bad things to happen to them.
As hard as it is, I try to focus on the good. I won’t let fear darken my heart because if I do, then I feel like the bad guys win.
I remember after the tragedy in Newtown, coming across a Fred Rogers quote and I found it comforting:
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
I’ve always had a great deal of respect for soldiers, RCMP officers, and first responders. But as I get older and our world starts to get more scary, that respect deepens.
What I do for a living is trivial, especially compared to putting on a uniform that includes a weapon as an accessory. But someone has to write the stories that will help children escape the real world. To see that even though there is a Big Bad Wolf, that there will always be brave heroes to protect us from him.
One of my artist friends said on Instagram Wednesday that sometimes art is all that makes sense to her. And she said something else that I can truly relate to:
“Today I’m rejecting the awfulness and focusing on the small, simple joy of paint on canvas. I can only respond to such hate by making something with love.“
There is always much love poured into my stories, but the more bad things I read about in the news, the more love I am putting out there for these children.
I create lands of make-believe so children can escape the real world for a little while. This act of writing helps me to remember there is more good than bad—more light than darkness—and I hope it will do the same for my young readers.
Let’s all just love each other and make as much light in this world as we can.