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Horror and Hope
I can hear someone shouting and crying, the noises echoing down the hallway that separates my room from my parent’s room. I try to shut it out, but the screams bounce around the inside of my skull until it’s all I can hear. Finally it becomes too much.
“What on earth are you guys watching?!” I yell, shaken by the raw pain I can hear in the voice, “It’s disturbing!”
“It’s the Bible on the History Channel, they just slit a boy’s throat,” my dad’s voice calls back through the crying.
‘Well would you please close your door or turn it down? I really don’t want to listen to this!” I snap, an almost desperate edge in my voice. The crying has quieted down to low broken sobs, but although the barrage of tortured screams has stopped I’ve already been unnerved. My dad comes and
closes the door, shutting off most of the sound. Silence fills the house once more, an almost comforting blanket.
But uneasiness sits in my stomach. I didn’t even see the scenes, didn’t see the blood or the gore. I only heard the sounds. But that’s all that was needed. Because it really isn’t the blood that disturbs me, it’s the
pain. I can’t handle seeing others in extreme pain. It’s why I will never go into the medical field. The constant gloom of death that hangs over hospitals would make me perpetually depressed. And I am blessed but also cursed with having a detailed imagination. I can come up with the craziest stories that make all my friends laugh. But it also means I’m very good at
visualizing, which in the case of horrific scenes or events, means I’m more affected than most.
Images flash through my mind of the Boston marathon bombing. A woman
clutching at her leg while medics try to stop the bleeding and debris
strewn across the street. I clutch at my mouth to keep from vomiting.
Breath, I just need to breath slowly, and calm down. But instead of growing calm I become angry. Why are people so cruel? And why is it so much harder to be good? It’s almost a casual habit to hurt others, not even intentional. And to be good you have to weave your way through a web of lies so that even if you get out to the other side without being caught, there are still strands of web stuck to you.
But no, I remind myself that these are a few highly publicized events. The way media portrays news makes the worst events overshadow everything. I guess it’s not interesting reading about people who do everyday acts of kindness. I think of a girl who was setting up for our club today for a fundraiser. She was so helpful it made an impression on me. When most of the others were busy with other things she made an effort to be here for us. And when she applied for a position for board next year, she didn’t even apply to be president. She asked to be co-president, she was willing to share it with someone else. Just thinking about her astounding humbleness and sincerity brightened my mood. There’s hope out there, we just have to remind ourselves to see it.