So, I just finished up a story about a 19 year old accused of violently shaking his 2 month old daughter until she had a fractured skull, ribs and bleeding in the brain.
I’m still waiting to update the story on the 150 people killed in a plane crash in the French Alps.
Before I started that one, I wrapped up the arrest in the cold case murder of a 64 year old, unarmed hotel security guard who was shot twice in the back by a robber.
In-between stories, I cried all over the desk after reading a friend’s blog about her friend’s 21 month old son who died unexpectedly last week.
Yesterday, I sobbed on the drive home after a stop at the vet’s office to get my dog’s medication. I saw a woman holding a little boy on her lap in the parking lot as they wept over a dead pet.
When I have a spare moment, I am overwhelmed by sadness over my mother’s struggle to care for my grandparents alone.
They have Alzheimer’s and dementia.
She works full-time in the news business too and comes home every night to soggy adult diapers stuffed in the dog food canister and profanity-laced tirades from my grandmother who is perpetually threatening to kill herself or escape. (When she’s not berating her husband, who has no memory of her insults just moments later.)
Last night as I worked out, I sweat, cried and worried for a friend whose marriage is falling apart.
Along with the endless sorrows of this life, I had to fight off panic today when I realized I missed a phone call from the day care because Alma was screaming that her eyes were burning for some unknown reason.
Then, I cried because I feel like a shitty parent. For missing the call. For not being able to rush to the school to pick her up.
Then again for the mother I don’t even know who just had to bury her son.
I am worn thin from the misery, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
I love hard, even though it means I hurt deeply.
I care for complete strangers and take pride in my empathy.
I hurt for my family and friends, but I also celebrate their joys like it’s my own private party.
And at the end of the day, when I put my daughter to bed, she will give me a real hug and a kiss on the cheek and tell me she loves me and it will be enough to prepare me for another day of tragedy and despair.
My son will ask me to read him a book and rub my arm nonchalantly and lay his head on my shoulder and I will feel like I can walk around with the weight of the world on my shoulders forever.
(Warning: If you read my posts to have a chuckle or bond over the fact that little kids suck, you may want to skip this one.)
Ever find yourself trying to hide the tears streaming down your face at work because you’re overwhelmed by all of the tragedy in the world?
But, that probably has something to do with the fact that my job is reading and writing about all of the tragedy in the world.
Being a news producer, I try very hard to make stories more meaningful. When I am tasked with writing a dinky 45 second story on an art gallery and scholarship program in honor of two teens murdered 3 years ago by their own mother, I put real effort into it.
I find good pictures of the victims, check out their father’s Facebook page… and then I cry.
Because the two teenagers were once babies.
Because this is what their father wrote on their birthdays:
On your 16th birthday, I should be sharing some football and Krispy Kremes with you and laughing at your jokes until our stomachs hurt. Instead I find myself struggling to find adequate words to express the joy you continue to bring to me and to the lives of so many. I am so proud to be your Daddio. I miss you more with each passing day.
Love you forever …+1 with Beau Schenecker and Calyx Schenecker
Calyx, missing you is the hardest part. Celebrating you is the easy part. So on the eve of your 19th birthday, I join thousands who rejoice in having your presence in their lives. From your first day on this Earth, you set out to make the world a better place…Oh my, how you have greatly exceeded expectations! I love you forever + 1, Daddio with Calyx Schenecker and Beau Schenecker
Then, I move on from that story to a 20 second update on the Washington mudslides.
We’ve been updating the death toll for weeks. There’s only so many ways to talk about the search for the missing.
But, they named the latest victim.
I could leave it at that.
Or, I could go look up more information about him and find his wife’s Facebook page.
Their 4 year old son was rescued by helicopter, the mud so thick it ripped his pants off as they hoisted him to safety.
Their 2 year old daughter is still missing and presumed dead.
Their other two children are confirmed dead.
This is a woman who has lost her husband and three children and yet she still refers to the rescue of her son as a miracle.
Time to take a break and check in on my Facebook feed… where I get updates on a friend of a friend’s daughter who has been diagnosed with a brain tumor.
She posts pictures like this and somehow remains upbeat. Her strength blows my effing mind.
Pre-hydration went well-much better than last time! First chemo was started about an hour ago and the second will be going up soon. Chloe didn’t want to nap earlier so, of course, when the nurses started her Benadryl at 5:15 to pre-medicate her she passed out cold. It may be a very long night or very early morning!
I try to keep my posts upbeat, sarcastic and brutally honest.
Some days I can’t keep up the charade.
Some days are just heartbreaking.
The only benefit of spending my days writing and reading about such heart wrenching, soul crushing things is that I love my kids more than you do.
Kidding, of course.
But, it does put things in healthy (or unhealthy) perspective.
It is the reason why every single stupid-cute thing my kids do makes me worship the ground they walk on.
It’s why I post pictures of them obsessively and daydream about being a stay-at-home-mom.
I want to spend every second loving my children, because you never know when you could end up being the story someone is hunting for more details about to make it more “meaningful.”
Oh, and one more thing.
Damn you Viral Nova for being a perpetual buzz kill.
Maybe this was just one long excuse for why I’m not gonna workout today. Who can go to the gym after that?