There are moments that make us pause and reflect, and express gratitude for the safety of the people we love, and empathize for those whose loved ones have been lost. There are moments that make us hug a little longer, and hold a hand a little tighter. Moments that bring grief to our hearts and tears to our eyes.
Today, we all experienced one of more of these moments after hearing the news of two explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. After seeing images of those who were injured and learning of the 3 deaths that occurred.
There are moments when loss doesn’t isolate us, it unites us. When average citizens become heroes and the hate in the heart of one, is shadowed by the goodness in the hearts of many. There are moments when our race, gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, and class don’t matter. Moments when we are simply citizens of the world. Today, we also experienced these moments as we watched volunteers race to help those in need and heard about Boston residents opening their homes to strangers without a place to go.
The effects of this tragedy are felt throughout the world, as runners from 96 countries were represented at this year’s marathon. And the effects of this tragedy may be felt by you on a more personal level. Maybe you knew one of the more than 400 Marylanders who were participants in the race. Or maybe a relative or close friend lives in Boston or a neighboring city. Or maybe you are already grieving a loss and find the news of this tragedy to be too much to bear so soon.
What do we do in times like these, where the places we should feel safest become places tarnished by tragedy, loss and pain? Where celebration is turned into sadness and festivity into fear? This is what we do….we come together, we remember to love, and we try to look for hope. We put aside our differences and come to the aid our friends and family whose lives have been forever changed, and we come to the aid of strangers whose names we may never know. We comfort one another. We remember that we are not alone. We whisper a silent prayer and we meditate on love and kindness for our world. We teach our children to love themselves and to love one another. We try to be heroes everyday.