That seems to be the only thing people are able to take away from the terrible, terrible thing that happened in Newtown, Connecticut today.  A 20-year-old man killed his mother, took her guns and went to Sandy Hook Elementary School and killed 20 six- and seven-year-old kids and six adults including the principal and the counselor before killing himself.

I just can’t get over the horror of it.  I mean, there’s nothing that can be said or written that can adequately describe how awful it is.  I was hardly able to concentrate on working today.  I embedded the video above because I think it exemplifies the mood of the nation in that the President of the United States could hardly get through a speech about it.  There were a number of times today when I almost cried myself just thinking about all the parents whose kids wouldn’t be able to open their presents this Christmas.

As I said, the main takeaway today seems to be to hug your kids a little tighter.  Milly was napping when the news of how bad the situation was started coming in, and when she came downstairs from that I went to give her a big hug.  She was fussy about it because she was still kind of tired, but I didn’t care and I squeezed her all the harder.

Amanda went out with Cyra and Amy (from work) for a little bit tonight, and when I asked Milly if she’d like to go anywhere she said “Brilliant Sky!”  So we loaded up, actually left before Amanda did, and went to Mayfaire.  We took the Harris Road route so I could make sure to pass by as many Christmas lights as possible for Milly to look at.  We even took a detour down one cul-de-sac where all but one house was illuminated.

We stopped and got a bite to eat at Atlanta Bread first.  I overheard a young guy talking to a girl behind me about the events of the day.  She apparently hadn’t heard anything about it yet.  He and I commiserated over it for a minute or two.

I was very happy to just look at Milly, who was happily eating a muffin top.  At the same time though, I couldn’t help but imagine, full of paranoia, what I’d do if someone came in and started shooting.  It could happen, right?  There was a mall shooting just a week or so ago.

What the hell is wrong with this country?

bunny-brilliant-skyAnyway, Milly had fun playing in Brilliant Sky.  I mean, of course she did; it’s a toy store.  She went back to where the kitchen is and started playing with that, but then she started acting funny and I realized she had to poop, so I picked her up, ran through the store, ran to Atlanta Bread (the closest public bathroom), ran through the restaurant and got there in time.

We went back again, and a few minutes later Milly was starting to pull her pants down.  Apparently she still had to go and had a little accident, so I ran back again and cleaned her up.  Fortunately she was wearing tights, otherwise she’d have had to go home in a skirt with nothing on underneath it, which, even though she’s only three (or maybe even more so because of it), would have been kinda weird.

We went back to Brilliant Sky once more after that, though there wasn’t too much time to play anymore.  We went back to the car and I put her in her seat, but she kept twisting around and saying, “Like this?” as in, “Is this how I’m supposed to sit?”  It was silly and cute, but then she wouldn’t stop and we really had to get going, so I tried to tell her it was time to sit.  She wouldn’t listen to me, so I warned her again and I eventually counted to three.  I counted a little faster than I normally do because I think she pushes for the two count, so I told her she’d have to go in the corner when we got home.

I told Milly I was really upset that that’s how our night had to end and we spent a good amount of time discussing it on the way home.  At one point when I asked her why she was in trouble, she said it was because she was silly, which made me sad for her.  I told her that it wasn’t because she’d been silly and that I enjoyed her being silly and thought it was fun, but that she didn’t stop when I told her to, that she didn’t listen to me.

When we did get home we were about to go upstairs when I remembered she had to go in the corner.  She did it without fuss and stood there quietly the whole time.

I hated to punish her today of all days, but I did enjoy being able to spend time with my girl.

Amanda, Cyra and Amy came back sooner than expected and played some Just Dance 3.  I walked out at one point a little later to find them watching Uwharrie.  I spent that time in the office trying to get some work done, but I had a really hard time pulling myself away from news coverage and discussions on what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary School today.

Zach Dotsey