First of all - where was I when this happened. April 15, 2013 was a Monday (tax day) and I was at work. I first saw something about the bombs on Facebook when a friend posted "Praying for Boston" as her status. I then went to MSN to see what the headlines were. All it said was that there was an explosion at the finish line of the Boston marathon. I assumed it was just some pyrotechnics that were set up for the finish line that went off incorrectly or something. A terrorists attack did not cross my mind. Just like I did not think the planes were intentionally flown into the twin towers in 2001 - that is just not where my mind goes first, I am an optimist I guess. By the time I got home from work, Nathan had the news on and I saw the coverage and realized it was in fact an attack. Though it was smaller scale that the last one (9/11) it was no less scary and seemed unfinished (as it still does to me today - I don't think we have heard the last of this).
Once I learned this was an attack, my first thought was that it was not from another country. I don't know why but I kept telling Nathan that it seemed like a protest more than an attack - from an American. Our amazing police forces were able to identify who was at fault for this and put pictures out in a few days! This was crazy to me - we have one sophisticated government and investigators. The conspiracy theories started - which I fully stay away from after the Sandy Hook ones, I have enough to worry about thank you very much. So then the two suspects go on one last spree where they end up killing a police officer and stealing a car and throwing homemade bombs and grenades at the police. One of the suspects is killed and the other is on the run. So, the entire Boston area is put on a lock down - no one is allowed to go anywhere - until this man is found. By the next afternoon, this suspect was found hiding in a man's boat in his backyard. He is now alive and in custody.
Now, for my feelings on this. I am anxious to hear what their motives were. I cannot fathom any reason that anyone would want to do that. I don't know that any answer will satisfy me either. This left me feeling vulnerable, scared, and a little paranoid. I didn't know what to do, so I decided to do all I knew that could help and that was to pray. But, I didn't only pray for the victims. I was scrolling through my Facebook news feed and saw a picture of the suspect that the police were looking for and I prayed for him. It felt strange and a little wrong, but very right. He needed those prayers. He needs guidance and God is the only one I know that can give him what he needs. I have learned in church to pray for our enemies and decided to give it a try. It helped me feel better, like I was helping in some very small way.
Lastly, how this has changed me. I told Nathan that I was glad I lived in a smaller town that no one would want to bomb, then remembered I live 30 minutes from Arkansas Nuclear One! Thankfully, I have been reassured (yes, I checked with someone) that there is always high security there and that it would take a certain kind of attack and a lot of it to make the nuclear plant release. I decided it wouldn't hurt to get an evacuation plan in place for me and the kids with the sitter (who is closer to the nuclear plant than we are). People are crazy and you just never know what can happen. I am the mom who doesn't let my kids out of my site and start panicking if I can't see them in public. Overprotective? Realistic. I follow Noah around at the park like a lost puppy dog and you can bet I know everything he is doing there and who he talked to. I remember on this last Black Friday I was standing in a very crowded store waiting to check out and thought to myself, someone could just get a gun out and kill hundreds of people very easily. I think the same thing anywhere I go where there are large crowds - I am jaded. Thank you 9/11, Sandy Hook, Columbine. My job is to protect my family and I would without question or hesitation die for them and sadly wonder, more often than I used to, if I will need to.
God Bless America. God Bless our victims. God Bless our government.
God Bless our enemies. God Bless You.