I’ve decided my life is becoming entirely too full of “do you remember where you were when….” moments. Growing up, I recall how my mom would talk about remembering where she was when she heard President Kennedy had been shot. That’s it. THAT was the extent of her “I remember where I was when…..” stories. I remember being awed and scared by the thought of living through something so horrific, never imagining what the future could possibly have in store.
Now, as the heartbreaking headlines and images pour out of Boston, I am left to ponder my list of where I was when….. The Columbia. Oklahoma City. Columbine. New York City. Washington, DC. Katrina. The Challenger. Newtown. And now Boston. And given that this is a partial list, I am scared to imagine what my children’s list may be.
I know this is a Disney blog, and our intent is to share our love of Disney, so I promise there is a connection in my thoughts. What struck me today as I stared, aghast, at my Facebook feed was how my thoughts immediately jumped to my WDW Radio family: Happy. Deanna. Joe. Val and Steve. Bea. Beckerman. Lori. Katie. The WDW Radio Running Team. How were they? Were they okay? Were any of them there? How are they handling things? Angie! Angie is in Massachusetts! Is she alright?
I scrolled frantically through my Facebook feed, and like a reassuring hug, I saw all my family, reacting in a way similar to myself, all posting their despair and their anger and their confusion… Laura’s prayers. Kathy’s inspirational quote. Emma’s kindness from across the Atlantic. Lisa’s post of the President’s speech. Chuck’s appeal to wear a running medal to work. John’s reminder to do what we love, because life is too short to spend it being unhappy. Liz announcing she will wear a running team shirt to work. I read them all. I felt scared and sad… and then, all at once, I felt… comforted. In the midst of my thoughts about how to explain yet another tragedy to my growing-all-too-fast-children, there was my WDW Radio family (most of whom I have never met in person), bringing me peace amid shared grief.
Mind you, the peace was not an “everything is going to be all right” kind of feeling. It was a “I share my pain with others” emotion. It was the knowledge that we are horrified by events hundreds of miles away, happening to people we do not know; that we share the desire to cry for our country; that we are confused… In short, I was comforted that I am not alone in my feelings of hopelessnes, frustration, and “I’ve had enough of this.”
I am so proud to be part of this community. Because when it comes down to it, we are brought together by so much more than a shared love for a theme park… or a mouse…. or even a podcast. We are the WDW Radio family because we have a shared commitment to believing that good will outweigh evil… and that the power of faith and dreams always outweighs madness. We know that kindness, compassion, and humility are cornerstones of a family, and we show that in our actions. And, of course, we believe in the power of a hug. We prove these values through the generosity of the Dream Team and the size of the mighty WDW Radio Running team. And I am certain this team will continue to demonstrate its belief in good come January, when the Blue Wave runs to benefit others, despite the sad few who want us to live in fear.
I love this family of mine… and I thank you all for helping me cope with another in a tragically long list of sad days for our country. I know I speak for us all when I say that I look forward to the day when our “remember where you were when’s” do not involve sadness or pain, but rather refer to healing and hope.