- Posted April 17, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Boston Marathon bombings: Your stories
Please make room for love.
- dsashin, CNN iReport producer
I’m a little frustrated tonight. Frustrated at the news, frustrated at the events of yesterday, frustrated at the senselessness that turned a beautiful day into tragedy. But unfortunately, I’m also a little frustrated with myself, or the lack of self that I felt through this entire tragic event. Yesterday, seconds after running from the chaos and fleeing down the street with my friends, I remember stopping, dead in the middle of a crowd of people, with tears coming down my face and just saying, rather dramatically…
“I hate people. What the hell is wrong with this world? This world disgusts me…people disgust me.”
Though I don’t think anyone who witnessed that tragedy yesterday can be held accountable for anything said between the hours of 3 pm and midnight yesterday due to shock, sadness, traumatic sights, and pure confusion, I wish I could take those words back at this moment. Over 24 hours later as the shock wears off and the reality sets in, the sadness still sits in my heart, but it sits alongside some disappointment. I am disappointed in myself, for ever claiming, even out of anger, that the entire world disgusted me.
Yesterday, I did exactly what the coward responsible for this tragic event wanted us to do…I lumped a nation full of people, some good and some bad, into a general category of evil. I lost my faith, for a split second, in every one and everything around me. For minutes of pure adrenaline, as I ran, I assumed anyone who ran by me was a suspect. I waited for gun shots, I ran away from police assuming they too, could be of harm. I ran past people asking questions of what was going on…I just ran. I ran in my too-tight, patent leather flats, and I ran faster than I have ever ran in my entire life. (If only my 7th grade gym teacher could have seen me, I feel like she would have given me full credit for that time I didn’t finish the mile run in under 12 minutes.)
But on a serious note, I want to apologize to myself, to God, and most of all, to my fellow human beings, for ever, even for a second, thinking that everyone in this world can be classified as evil and cannot be trusted. If this was true, strangers wouldn’t have carried victims to safety. If this was true, my friend wouldn’t have stayed back to put her nursing skills to use. If this was true…I wouldn’t be sitting safely on my couch right now with my family safely around me.
Strangers opened doors to other strangers. Strangers fed strangers, kept them warm, and comforted them. The truth about yesterday is that it was downright horrible. Horrible to watch, horrible to think of, horrible to be a part of, and horrible to even imagine happening as a hypothetical event in another state, let alone right in my own city, 50 feet away from me. But what is not horrible about yesterday is that there are so many good and beautiful people in this world that there is no way, EVER, that one coward or group of cowards can take that away.
Even in the wake of pure tragedy, even with the loss of an innocent child, people are coming together now more than ever. I am not insinuating that unity and good vibes from Boston strangers can erase or even lessen what has been done, but what I am saying is that imagine how much deeper the wound would be if we filled the empty spaces created yesterday with hate instead of love? Imagine how much more pain these families of victims would be feeling if we directed all of our energy into a whirlwind of anger instead of a hypothetical embrace that can almost be felt just from reading posts on the internet from supportive strangers around the world?
I am sorry for ever claiming that the World is a bad place. I never want to think that way, speak that way, or feel that way for the rest of my life. I never want to be so terrified that I lose loving words and resort to words of hate, and I never want to feel so threatened that I don’t trust in the camaraderie of those around me. I am grateful to be alive today, but I am also grateful to be insightful today. The world is full of so much ignorance, and while it is still bliss, it doesn’t help us move forward. Boston has been set back tremendously in the past 24 hours and no matter how many times President Obama says we will triumph and says we are resilient, we need to prove it.
Please, in this moment right now, let go of your ignorance. Let go of your hatred. Be angry but don’t be overcome with anger. Be sad but don’t be overcome with sadness. Both of these things take up so much space inside of us that we can’t possibly have enough space for the only thing that each and every one of us needs right now…love. In honor of the victims, in honor of the runners, in honor of society in general, please leave room for love.