My husband walked upstairs holding his hunting rifle, and all I could say was, "Not in my house." I took one look at that gun and was instantly transported back to that basement, fourteen years ago, when I thought at least one life was going to end.
“We lock the door and shut the curtains, and, when its all clear, we line up in a special order and listen to what our teachers tell us.” –My kindergarten daughter, Zelia
They say work to live not live to work but how do you come home crushed by a forty-eight-hour shift on sixty minutes of broken sleep and kiss your babies and tell them it’s all going to be okay when their school is on lockdown due to a nearby shooting and the suspected gunman is still on the loose as you tend to a patient with suspicious wounds while the world keeps debating nuclear stories around you, and you think this small town ain’t so bad: the knife and gun club has low enrollment compared to the gang-ridden inner city you grew up in where shots fired were barely flinched at (because they weren’t en masse), and hella felons ran through your property with cops and helicopters giving chase.
I grew up in a gun-free family and neighborhood. As a child of the 1950s and 1960s, I associated guns with the Westerns I saw at the movie theater or with the Lone Ranger, the hero of my favorite TV show.
Then guns intruded on my life--twice.