There are those moments for all of us. Some are personal and some are local, national and even global.
For people who remember, they know where they were when JFK was shot. (Way before my time). They know where they were when the Challenger exploded. (I was in my classroom having recess because my teacher for whatever reason wouldn't let us watch. Another student barged in and told us what happened). They know where they were when 9/11 happened. (I was at work and when told that a plane had hit the WTC, I asked NY or Boston because I knew my mother in law worked at the one in Boston).
But if we think about the ages that we were when certain life events occur, we don't remember much when we're young. I was 10 for the Challenger so I remember that. But I don't remember the Iranian hostage crisis as I was only 3. I don't remember Reagan or Lennon getting shot as I was only 4.
I've struggled going back and forth on whether or not to expose my kids to some of the horrors that are happening in today's very screwed up world. They do not know, to the best of my knowledge about the shooting at Sandy Hook. All I did was come home that night and hug them as tightly as I could. And we snuggled for a long time before they went to sleep. We have never talked about it.
As for yesterday, I don't believe they know either. The TV was definitely on while they were eating dinner, but they did not pay attention. They did not ask what happened, nor did I offer it up. Even though my son had someone running in the marathon for him as part of the Miles for Miracles program with Boston Children's Hospital, he still did not ask. We had been there at the finish line just 48 hour earlier.
Do I show them the video? Do I then teach them about what true evil looks like? Do I save their innocence, even if it's just for 1 day until the next evil comes along in some other form?
I brought them into work with me today. Really for no other reason than just to be with them. It seemed like a good day to do it. We had lunch together in the kitchen. They drew me pictures. It was nice.
My guess is in the future they would not remember what happened yesterday as they are only 5. And even if they did remember, they may not be able to process it completely now so their memory of it would be faint at best.
I think I'll leave it alone and hopefully they'll never know what evil really is.