The children noticed the drop in temperature as they stepped into a shadow of a barn or a tree. Following the sun with their eyes and then their feet, until warmth surrounded them. They smiled when the sun hit their faces, ran to their mothers, or to the lake, laughing or frowning, but lucky either way, lucky to have the option. I wondered if it could be that easy. If we, as parents, and caretakers, could simply see light from darkness, follow it with our eyes and our feet, and soon be warm and content again. But I knew it wouldn’t. I knew in real life, the simple step from dark to light, is oceans wide and mountains high. The older we get, the bigger the leap becomes. I wondered how long it would take this time.
I had the pleasure of photographing two very beautiful babies on Saturday morning. Under a cold sun, I marveled as their innocence ran parallel with the overwhelming grief that has enveloped this country.
The irony didn’t escape me: both of these children come from grieving families; two families who have said goodbye to children; two mothers who have had their hearts broken in unimaginable ways.
It’s not possible, not today, and not tomorrow, for the families of Newtown to process their new reality. The grief in those homes is unfathomable. But on a hill lined with trees, I had to remind myself that new life always comes, hearts somehow find ways to heal, and children are never, ever forgotten.