Saturday, December 14, 2013
Today, as you've probably heard, is the anniversary of the Newtown, CT shooting where 20 young children and 6 adults were murdered by a mentally unhealthy gunman using weapons with high capacity magazines. It's one of those horrors that, as much as you support changing the circumstances that made it, it's hard to feel...worthy of saying anything on the subject.
I will say this; I don't want it to happen again but I'm pretty sure it will.
By chance I honored the kids of Newtown both living and dead by spending time with one of my favorite kids. She towers over me but she's still, for me, a kid.
In years past we have gone to Macy's and visited Santa. She's 12 now. The possibility that she would want to visit Santa every year for the rest of her life was slim. I knew that.
Last year illness and busy-ness kept us from that tradition so we addressed the idea of change with a by-blow. This year she told her mother and me that she'd rather not do the Santa thing because it felt "kind of creepy." If you're uncomfortable it's no good. Carmencita suggested we meet for breakfast and see the tree at Rockefeller Center and maybe some store windows to give ourselves jolts of each other and holiday spirit.
Today dawned cold and snowy and as windy as you ever hope it not to be. The child woke cold and stormy and as reluctant as you ever hope her not to be. But we persevered (and nudged and cajoled) and we met and it turned out to be lovely. Turns out that if you cover the bridges and tunnels with snow (and fear) the crowds at all the attractions are much thinner. It was lovely!
As we stood in front of the tree taking selfies Alita continually, but genially, berated her mother. "Moms don't take selfies." "See? You don't even know how to do it." But when the shutter clicked she smiled every time. She's opinionated but she is in no way sullen. I appreciate that more than I can say. When she leaned her chin on my shoulder for our annual in-the-ornament shot in Bryant Park it was officially the perfect new tradition.
She makes me grateful. My heart goes out to the families of Newtown.
As told by Kizz Robinson at 7:24 PM