Yesterday during art time in my after-school yoga class here in NYC a boy sat next to me and drew a picture. “This is me, and this is lots of blood” he said as he swirled a red marker around on his paper. I told him I could see that and I wondered why he might be drawing this. Then he said, “Did you know there was a bomb nearby?” I told him I did. Then a young girl asked, “What is a bomb?”
My heart broke. I thought about Mister Rogers and how he always said “find the helpers.” I explained that a bomb is something that explodes but that there were good people protecting us who found the bombs and kept us safe. “Did they catch the person that sent them?” they asked. “Yes” I told them “there are police officers and good people protecting us and they caught the person who did this.”
We live in a world where 6 and 7 year old children need to process and discuss bombs.
Enough with the “us and them.” It doesn’t matter what your political party is, what your religion is, what you look like, how you dress, how you talk, what kind of God you believe in or don’t. We are- every single one of us - deserving of safety and love, simply because we were born. Start with your own family and friends. Love them. Listen to them. See them. Then smile at a stranger. Tell someone why you respect them. Get outside your comfort zone and talk to someone new. Maybe someone who doesn’t look like you. Then listen to your heart and vote. Our children deserve better.