There has been so much tragedy this week, I feel compelled to talk about it. I know everyone is consumed by the shooting in Colorado, and I am sick that poor state has to be the one that starts another national conversation on gun control. I only have one thing to say about that before I move to my more personal tragedy this week. If you buy an assault rifle, isn't it because you want to launch an assault? Is there any other reason to own one?
Not to take away from that poor theater in Colorado, but I was touched by a far more personal tragedy that hit way close to home this week. As a Risk Manager, I am the person who administrates when there is a car accident involving death or dismemberment. I had one of those this week. A lovely man who is a driver for my company found himself in an accident he couldn't even see coming. At first it was thought his leg was broken. 24 hours later it was learned it had to be amputated. Now, we learn, nearly a week later, that he may lose the other leg as well.
I can only pretend to comprehend the change in your life something like that would bring. I know, from research and internet reading, it will require a great deal of acceptance, rehabilitation, and patience. I actually was thisclose to another amputee fairly recently, and witnessed how this person changed the tragedy into amazing opportunity. And I am fortunate to work with another, who everyday is a shining example of what a human being can overcome. A dear, sweet friend and coworker, he has a packed full life, enjoying a marriage, a son, and a lifelong career that all came AFTER the accident that changed him forever.
When I watch all the coverage of the Colorado rampage and see people at their darkest moment, what strikes me, with startling clarity and breathless beauty, is the humanity of which we are all capable. Like 9/11, that which did not kill us, only made us stronger. In times of tragedy, of senselessness, it is not despair that is the prevailing emotion.
It is hope.
It is resilience.
It is optimism.
It is the fact that when all the words have been spoken, it's the human touch we remember, the moment when we bear witness to the immeasurable outpouring of charity and trust and goodness. It's the aftermath that is the most important, when hearts and hands come together to mend the tattered fabric of our lives.
Right now, I want to celebrate the resiliency, the ability we as humans have to bounce back. And I am praying for a sweet man who, like Job, is experiencing the greatest test of his life. I promise to be there for him when his will falters, when his stamina runs dry. I like to think the rest of you would be, too.