From January to the end of May 2014, I spent most of my personal time raising money for Emily’s baseball team trip to Toronto and planning a sweet 16 party.
By the end of May, I had every single things planned.
I was leaving on a business trip and had packed Emily’s suitcase for her (and Jon) to meet me in Toronto a week later.
We had raised all the money we needed, this was going to happen and the players, parents and volunteers who were going on the trip were excited.
While I was away, something happened. Something that I never thought would happen.
One person took our city hostage.
Somehow, he dressed up army style and walked through the city streets, waiting for the police forces to be called so when they arrived, he could shoot them.
3 officers were killed, 2 more injured. My city, the place where we live, work, go to school, shop and so much more was in lockdown and I wasn’t home.
For some, it would have been a blessing to be away but I was devastated. I wanted to hug my family, I wanted to be home to try to explain to Emily what was going on.
Instead, I was in Indianapolis following news on my phone. Twitter was the fastest to give me update and sleep didn’t come that night.
The next morning, school was canceled and people who were not in the lockdown zone were asked to stay indoor anyway.
When Jon told Emily she didn’t have school, Emily asked why. When he started to tell her about the bad guy, she got nervous so he changed his story to “it’s a snow day”. Emily laughed and went with it :). Snow day in June are not really possible. There wasn’t snow anywhere, she knew it but she went with it.
The lockdown lasted 30 hours.
This “guy” killed people and almost ruined our baseball team’s trip to Toronto.
It sounds selfish when I say it like that but… For some of our players this was their first plane ride, for many of our kids, this was the first time they were part of a team who was going away. For all of us (team members, parents and volunteers) this was the first time we were to go play ball at the Rogers Center, home of the Toronto Blue Jays.
We all worked so hard to make this happen.
We had been raising money for months and this “guy” was minutes away from ruining this for us.
Some of us were ok to make it to the airport but all of us should have been ok. All of us should have been free to pack a suitcase a go to the airport. All of us should be free to have coffee on their deck, go to work or just drive around.
Early June, a guy who decided to go on a cops killing rampage in our peaceful town didn’t only kill and injured cops. He scared people, he made people hide in their houses, he canceled school and closed businesses, he made the whole world #pray for Moncton, he took something from all of us regardless if we were home or away.
For 30 hours, I felt so far away from home. I wouldn’t have been able to stopped him, I just wanted to hug my family.
On the Friday morning when my family ( Jon and Em) and my baseball family arrived at our hotel in Toronto. I wanted to hug them all and I am not hugger. So I hugged my girl and my husband.
I asked Em how she was doing and she was great. I asked her about the last week as I was away. We talked every single day but I still wanted to know. She told me that “dad didn’t send her to school because of a snow day”.
I knew we would have to talk about it before she went back to school the following week but this was going to be an awesome baseball weekend so I smiled and told her that her dad was silly.
Snow day in June.