A while back, a friend of mine accidentally coined the term "sombering" when she mixed up the words "somber" and "sobering," mashing them together. I've loved this made-up word ever since and have had more than a few experiences where it seemed to fit.
One of the most "sombering" moments of my life was when I learned of the horrific violence visited upon the people of Newtown, Connecticut on December 14th. When faced with the spirit-crushing knowledge that we live in a world where such cruelty and violence exist, it is hard to know how we can go on. I grieve for those directly impacted by the tragedy and for the millions of people who, like me, were left with a feeling that a piece of their own hope and innocence is forever gone.
I have been quiet about this because I feel I have nothing to say that can ease our collective sadness. To avoid tormenting myself, I retreated from news stories and friends' status updates that only seemed to make me feel worse. I have allowed myself to feel the grief. There are no words that will speed us through it. No easy fix.
How long is it appropriate to mourn for people you never knew? For me, it feels like it will linger a long time, maybe forever. And in that grief it can seem trivial to go on with everyday things. To write blog posts about fitness, or food, or of all things, fun.
But I do know that even in the presence of grief, we will move on. We will each continue to shine our light into the world -- a world that I have to believe is filled with more light than darkness. I'm committed to offering up my light, and to leaving this place better than I found it. For me, I'll be doing so with a renewed commitment to seeing things in the scope of the larger community. We are all one.
So on this sombering note, I am back. Back to my blog, back to my calling, as a writer, as a teacher, as an entertainer, as a mother, as someone who cares deeply about humanity and is committed to contributing love, health, happiness and yes, even fun to this world.
New day. New year. New opportunities for love, healing, kindness, compassion, and creating a peaceful world. We move on, step by step, though we are still grieving, in the hope that we can only move up from here.
May the new year bring you peace.