On the way home I got some frantic calls from my husband, wondering where I was and if I were safe. I was crusing in my car on the freeway and not conscious of the panic that my husband might have been experiencing. When we got on the phone, he told me that there was another shooting, on the same street as the school I work at.
In one week we have had two people shot and a 33 year old Black, mother killed by a random drive-by shooting; leaving behind an 8 year old and 15 year old child. His fear was real and there are so many that ask me why I continue to work in such a dangerous area with some of the most potentially dangerous students.
The faces of those children; the big brown eyes and chocolate skin, the frown lines displayed on 14 year old skin, the under loved, under appreciated, under hugged and underserved children of the Goddess live in those broken down and crime invested projects. These warriors in tiny clothing walk across the battle fields of drugs, guns, needles and crack pipes to come to a building that represents what might be hope. They sleep in bathtubs and on the floor to avoid the bullets flying, just to get up and innocently play with peers, see their favorite teacher, get a hug from a counselor or joke with the principal. They survive unimaginable circumstances and become adults way before their time and it is the one place they might be able to go and be a child.
I don’t know why I was born in different circumstances, why my mother chose not to smoke crack cocaine, why my parents chose to raise me in a middle class area of town or why the goddess gifted me with the gift of I have. I do know that there are a lot of other people who do not have the pleasures I enjoy in life and that I am lucky to be able to extend a hug to someone else and receive one in return.
I cannot say that I don’t get nervous or scared at times, because I do, but besides the fleeting moments of discomfort I feel an honor that is only bestowed on me by the Goddess and God. I am grateful that my children don’t have to step over discarded piles of trash or puddles of standing water on the school yard from the rain in order to go to school.
The children of the Gods come in all different colors, shapes, races, nationalities, socioeconomic brackets and with varying circumstances. Let us not forget the underserved in our mission to worship the Gods, they need our love and blessings too.