This is how I processed the Sandy Hook school tragedy the following day. Please excuse the tense and POV changes; this is essentially stream-of-conscious first draft stuff. Although this act will NEVER make sense, we do our best to understand–it’s what we do. This is just my version.
When he went to bed Thursday night, Adam knew it was the last night he would spend at home—and that’s the way he wanted it.
He’d deal with his mom first and that would just be the beginning.
He knew exactly what he was going to wear the morning of—black military gear. He was an instrument of death. After today, everybody was going to know the torment that was his life and what he was about to do this morning was to insure that nobody was going to forget.
He was going to do that most horrendous act of violence that he could possibly imagine—thanks Mom! She always said inflicting harm on the helpless—animals, the elderly—children—absolutely outraged her.
He couldn’t relate—it was all the same to him—like squashing ants or swatting flies—it didn’t make a difference in his life.
He loved the thought that his mother, who thinks she is in complete control of EVERY situation including his life, will realize in the last moments of her life she isn’t in control of shit. He cannot wait to see the look on her face (turns out he shot her while she slept) when she finally realizes her last moments were unplanned—were out of her hands. It’s going to be sweet.
Then there’s Ryan, Mr. Golden Boy, can do no wrong. He’s going to feel some hell when they find his driver’s license at the scene of an elementary school shooting. And the parents of the dead kids–the chosen—will think twice now about bringing innocents into this corrupted world. He hopes they have many sleepless nights and question every parental decision they’ve ever made. Perhaps their grief will push them to sterilization.
On Friday morning, Adam killed his mother who had recently left her career to take care of him full time. We now know that she had looked into committing him to a psychiatric hospital and I’m sure he was aware of this. Probably not coincidental that he acted out before this happened. My thought is that he had exhibited some disturbing patterns of behavior—maybe even dangerous and he needed constant supervision. A babysitter said he was instructed not to leave a room Adam was in. evidently, very smart, but with behavioral problems. Suspect he may have had Asperger’s syndrome—NOT an explanation in of itself because there is no correlation with proactive violent behavior.
Adam kills his mother at the home formerly shared with his father and brother. He takes her car and at least three weapons and drives to Sandy Hook Elementary where he parks in the fire lane. Knowing he must force his way in, he uses the rifle to blow a massive hole through the door. The principal and psychologist enter the hallway and he immediately kills them and heads straight for the classrooms. He has studied the layout. Children and teachers in the hallway scramble like nervous chickens and disappear into rooms, but he barely notices.
He crashes through the door of the first classroom and guns down the teacher—shooting her twice and then shooting twice all the children within range. Adam hurries to the next room and does the same. Some of the kids get away, but it’s a messy business. He pounds on the third classroom door—a little panicky with sirens becoming increasingly louder followed by approaching footsteps. He is out of time—it wasn’t enough—but that is the story of his life, never fully realized. He shoves the gun in his mouth and shouts “fuck you!” and pulls the trigger.
Word spreads immediately and quickly like brushfire. CNN is on the story before essential facts are verified. Frantic parents flock to the school and are redirected to a nearby fire department. Fortunate parents intercept their children leaving the school in snaking lines. Parents hug their children like never before and don’t quite release them.
Those waiting at the fire station collapse with relief at the sight of their children until finally, the welcomed influx of children slows, then stops. The remaining parents exchange horrified glances and are told all of he children have been accounted for and that there would not be imminent reunions. The governor will inform next steps.
Clergymen intersperse themselves among parents, offering prayer, hope and perspective. Parents cannot absorb these words until the governor finally makes an announcement. There are no survivors. Animalistic howls and wails erupt and shake everybody within earshot.
Identifications still need to be made. There will be no reunions of the deceased children with their parents Friday night. Parents will not be tucking in their children tonight, no Saturday morning promises of pancakes and cartoons. Confused siblings will be confused, mad and then utterly sad. At moments, the first few nights feel like the child is visiting grandparents. And then the time will come when they should be home by now and a deep despair clouds everything.
Town residents take down Christmas decorations. This is not a time to celebrate. Turns out our children are not safe. It isn’t just the high school crowds where bullies and cliques run rampant. These children accept each other because they just want to play. There is no underlying agenda, no malice. These children still believe in Santa, still think the opposite sex is gross. For some, this was their first year of school. Most of them were dreaming about what they were going to get for Christmas. They were still babies.