I am feeling what can only be described today as generous emptiness.
Walking around in my day, in my room, in my head, through the leaning walls of my soul, around the jagged pieces of my heart and feeling almost nothing.
Last night, as we held our heads in our hands, in the moments between fixing our eyes on a screenful of horrific tales from Uvalde, there were so many feelings.
Horror at the violent end for 19 children and 2 of their teachers at Robb Elementary School.
Aching all over for every parent, sister, brother, grandparent, aunt, uncle who sat and waited, fearing or hearing the worst news imaginable.
Utter disbelief over our powerlessness to end such gun insanity in this crazy Land of the Free, Home of the Brave Little School Children.
Rage at the people offering insane responses during the early tragic hours of our collective grief. People like Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. "Stay off TV..." we implored, shaking our fists and our heads. Do something. Anything. But don't take a TV interview. Not this night. Surely that brand of dispassionate stupidity could have stood in the wings at least 24 hours.
Then. The day numbness arrives. The brain too full of pictures and ponderings and Twitter yammerings. I wander zombie-fied from the cup of cold forgotten coffee to the yard to the desk to the washing machine to the mailbox. Back to the coffee. Cold. Like my insides.
It's as if there is something to be done, but I don't know what it is. Call one of my never like-minded GOP Congressfolk? Make cupcakes and drive 175 miles to Uvalde? Send a note to Steve Kerr to sign up for any idea he has? Flowers/cash to generous funeral homes in Uvalde?
Yesterday, before this news broke, I voted in Texas' primary runoff election. The ballot was short and uncomplicated, as ballots for democratic candidates in Texas often are. I felt light and happy walking out of the polling place, as I always do when I vote. Because I believe in change. I believe well-informed, determined voters affect change. I believe democracy works when people vote.
I believe. Mostly.
Sadly I do not believe we will ever change the probability of more tragedies like Robb Elementary School. This is not a natural disaster that disrupted a sunny school day - this is a choice. We choose, in Texas and the US, to elect people who love the jangle of NRA coins more than they love the idea of making sure guns of war cannot be purchased at your town's civic center or Walmart.
It makes me sick to type it. But we all know it's true.
If what happened 10 years ago at Sandy Hook Elementary School didn't wake the electorate up in advance of a Parkland High School, a Santa Fe High School, a Robb Elementary School... I honestly don't know what will.
I am empty.