03-26, I Will Do More…

Last night, I went to the King Soopers grocery store that I frequent the most with my second oldest son, Christopher. I thought it was silly and impractical of me to avoid going out of fear from Monday’s incident, where 10 of my fellow Coloradoans where painfully murdered in a King Soopers at a nearby location. I had already skipped my morning routine several days in a row.

As we stood in the line at the self-service check out, I heard what sounded like an explosion

and my heart stopped.

I felt like I was thinking in slow motion.

I considered the few items in my basket.

Contemplated whether I should leave my wallet.

Wondered if my son would be afraid.

Thought about whether it would be effective to grab his arm, or to let him run with me. Beside me. Behind me. Faster than me.

I wondered would we make it.

I wondered would we die.

Would we die inside? Outside? Would anyone else?

I turned around, as did the others near me who heard the sound…

…and saw a young man, who looked younger than my son.

He’d dropped his glass bottle of a carbonated beverage. It exploded and spilled onto the floor.

He had too many items in his hand – and no basket.

I felt a belabored and angst-laden sigh ease out of my lungs.

I thought, maybe, it could have been a gun.” I said in my head.

And now, I keep hearing the “explosion…”

The terror that coursed through my veins in that instant was unlike any feeling I’ve ever felt in the grocery store before. I feared for my life and my son’s – and it seemed the anxiety after the fact felt even worse than the few seconds (that felt like hours) in between.

Immobilized several seconds later, I pushed myself to finish the task at hand and found myself walking out of the store far quicker than I had entered. I wanted to go home. To get away. With my son. Safely.

It occurred to me that I might still be traumatized by this week’s events because they are indeed so close to home.

Though the tragedy troubles me deeply in its entirety, I’m so grateful to have a safe space to write how I feel – and a community of writers who are both caring and of great literary caliber. As I attempted to process my thoughts from the comfort of my home, I came to the conclusion – in regards to those I care about, I will do more…

I will listen longer.
I will laugh quicker.
I will love better.
I will fight harder.
I will squeeze tighter.
I will forgive faster.
I will think bigger.
I will shine brighter.
I will dig deeper.
I will move slower...
So I can appreciate
and celebrate
and often embrace
the ones I love.
Because sometimes
there's not a later.
There's only a now.

Tonight’s scare reminded me that even the seemingly most insignificant moments are precious. In a literal heartbeat, they can all be taken away. In the photographs above, I’ve endeavored to share a few of the moments that have meant the most. I’ve already lost too many that I love – to forget that every second counts. May your heart be filled with the loves who have mattered most in your life. Blessings to you all.

#lifeisshort #iwilllovethemforever #makeeverymomentcount #lovetheoneswholoveyoumost #andlovetheoneswhovenotyetlearnedwhatloveis #bekindinanunkindworld #Hisloveisthebestloveofall #carlamichelle

11 thoughts on “03-26, I Will Do More…

  1. Your words are ringing loud in my ears this morning, helping me to process this tragedy on a very personal level. There is such heartbreak and yes we need to hug tighter and listen longer. Thank you for these words.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Christine,

      Thank you so much for reading. I imagine this will be something that I may process for a while. I am relying heavily on my faith to help me get through it all, and I am thankful for the kindness of the community as I go through this endeavor. Your words are greatly appreciated.

      With Warmest Regards,

      ~Carla Michelle

      Like

  2. I’m on the east coast, but a victim from the tragedy grew up here, some family still lives in town. The community has been impacted by the violence. Your words bring the fear alive but you give hope with your conclusion to do more. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Lgrainger125,

      My heart goes out to you. I couldn’t agree more. My hope remains ever strong, and I look forward to the many opportunities we will be collectively given to add love in the places where there seems to be none.

      Eternal Optimist,

      ~Carla Michelle

      Like

  3. Haunting and so true. The image rising up for me is that young boy without a basket, juggling too many items and dropping one–frozen in place at the sound. I wonder if he recognized the impact of that moment the way that you and the other shoppers did. It feels like such a metaphor for that one second in time or that one small decision (like when and where to shop) that can have life-altering consequences.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Amy,

      What a thoughtful consideration! It had not occurred to me how analogous his ordeal was as a parallel to what we have been collectively feeling and experiencing.

      I see an admonishment for me as well – to refrain from taking on so much that I cannot balance it all. It’s most unhealthy with the potential for dropping an item we’re juggling.

      I am much more mindful about those “small” decisions now, particularly in light of the potential to be life-altering, as you’ve noted.

      Thank you for this insight that has shed light on this situation in a new way. I appreciate your remarks. They are most encouraging.

      With Warmest Regards,

      ~Carla Michelle

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Yes I’m sure you’ve given voice to many people’s thoughts and fears at this time with your detailed and insightful post and the desire to make the most of every moment we have is so true and real., because as you say, sometimes there’s not a later, there’s only a now.’

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear livinglife817287820,

      I am hoping that there is consolation to be found in sharing this account. I’ve resolved to make sure that my commitment extends beyond the post. I’m so grateful for the many blessings I’ve received. I hope to make my appreciation known by cherishing each one that I have. Here’s to more now over less later.

      Thank you so much for your kind response.

      ~Carla Michelle

      Like

  5. Such a beautiful piece of writing. You capture this so, so perfectly. My sons are grown and I can’t imagine going back into a store with kids. Such a crazy hard time we live in. But it seems like you have brought some good out of it. I want to print out your last part and hang it over my desk and in my car and on the fridge. We need to remember these important words!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear carwilc,

      Thank you so much for your feedback. I try when I can to go alone, just because… Crazy indeed.

      Nevertheless, I learned from my young when I was very little girl that tough times can be often – and finding that silver lining on the clouds can make all the difference in the worlds when it comes to surviving.

      You have truly honored me with your kindness and warm thoughts. I’d like to hang those words in my head – because sometimes, I forget!

      Thank you so much for sharing your sentiments with me. I am most appreciative.

      With Warmest Regards,

      ~Carla Michelle

      Like

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