A kid fired shots in my old high school this morning.
I was doing my morning thing where I set my alarm way earlier than I need to, drowsily put on NPR and doze for another couple hours.
I wondered if what I heard was a dream.
But when I truly awoke, it was true. A kid fired shots in North Thurston High School. It was the place where I spent too many hours toiling away in the marching band and prepping for the next show by the drama department. I met my first two loves there, formed permanent friendships.
No one was hurt, so I didn’t have to rush down and talk to old teachers about dead kids.
Everyone from high school on Facebook was shocked, saddened. What I read indicated the kid tried to commit suicide by cop at 16. Who knows if that’s the whole truth – I didn’t have the heart to fully investigate the matter. Anyway, I was too busy with my nose in 200 pages of lawsuit documents, glancing at images of Nepalese earthquake tragedy porn and a burning Baltimore on CNN.
I’m not surprised by anything that happens anymore – even at my alma mater.
Thing is about my job, I can be shocked, saddened, sickened – but I’m never surprised anymore. I understand the capacity of how tragic and awful – even pathetically sad – humanity can be. Even at such an early age.
It hit home for me this time and I still can’t bring myself to feel something visceral and real. Just kind of a dulled outrage and helplessness.
Sometimes I wonder whether my work carves me up, leaving just a shell of a soul.
Sometimes I think I feel so deeply that I have to just turn that part of myself off in order to go on.
Maybe it’s a little of both.
All I know is that anything can happen to anyone.
So maybe I’ve given up thinking it can be better.