400 Miles Away, Silver Lake Shooting A Little Too Close To Home

By kncitom on July 23, 2018

By Tom Mailey

The news hit a little too close to home this weekend regarding, specifically, my daughter.

The shooting at a Trader Joe’s in Silver Lake, which left an employee dead and a community shaken, happened literally two blocks from the home of my 26 year old daughter Emma. She’s lived in a small, tidy one bedroom in Silver Lake since 2014. Her area has a 20-something vibe, with streets full of hip little restaurants and bars and neighborhoods full of small, tidy homes. She lives across from a historic recording studio. She loves it there. That Trader Joe’s is her store.

She’d been in there earlier that day.

When I heard the breaking news on the radio (coincidentally, as I was heading home from my grocery store), I texted her immediately. Thankfully, she replied fairly quickly that she was fine, and I didn’t have to hold my breath too long.

But still.

I don’t think anything will stop the violence we commit against each other in this country, try as some people might. There are simply too many angry, or deranged, or misguided individuals who could, at any moment, suddenly materialize into our lives and leave us potentially shattered in their wake. But, like most, I frankly don’t worry about it much. I keep my head on swivel as much as the next person but, just like being hit by lightning or a Mack truck, I know the odds are small and so I don’t let it interfere with my life or my enjoyment of it.

But still.

Yesterday didn’t leave me shattered, as it did the family members of those killed or injured by the Trader Joe’s gunman.

But it did leave me shaken.

I have no grand point to make here. I guess I’m just getting something I’m feeling out, out of me, because I don’t like it being in there. I don’t like the uneasiness that comes with realizing you can only control so much, and that it’s work enough to worry about yourself but when it’s your kid (or kids), it can drive you mad, if you allow it to.

I will say that I am thankful that this morning is, for me, for our family, and for Emma, no different than any other Monday morning. I am thankful for the mundane and the ordinary routines we are all able to resume.

Em texted me last night to say she’d just come from leaving flowers at the store. I was proud of her for doing so. I was sad she had to do it. I am glad she is around to be able to do it. I told her I love her. She replied with the same back to me, and normally, I delete texts pretty quickly. I took a screen shot of that one though. I’m going to save it to remind me that love is it. It’s all we have–as family, as friends, as fellow humans just trying to go about our lives and live them the best we can. So savor it. Cherish it. Share love as much as you can, because you never know. You just never know.




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