In the horrific aftermath of the Sandy Hook shootings, I hugged my children, crying for all of the lost children and the grief their parents must feel.
But, I also wept for the teachers who gave their lives to protect their students.
Any teacher worth their salt knows that our students are our other "children". We see them every day. We celebrate their accomplishments and help them through their failures. We have the opportunity to touch lives.
But for some, that privilege does not come without its costs. I've often considered what I would do if there were a shooter in my school. I wish that was a lie, but after Columbine, I had to consider the possibility. Crazy people exist in the world, and there is always a chance that one of those crazies might make their way into my school, threatening the lives of my kids. I've run the scenario through my mind many times, but the reality is that you can't plan for such a tragedy.
I prayed last night in church that God would bring them all to heaven and give them peace. Then, I asked God to give me the strength to be as brave as those teachers were I ever in the same situation. I am so inspired by their strength during such a frightening time.
I still believe that teaching is the most challenging and rewarding profession out there. I give a sincere thank-you to the teachers who lost their lives performing courageous acts that shouldn't have been part of the job description.
I never met you, but I will never forget you.
Beth - 0
Courageous Sandy Hook Teachers - 1