Archive | November, 2015

Nohemi Gonzales is “somebody’s Baldwin”

14 Nov

Thank you for all your prayers and Baldwin is fine. Last night, before the attacks, she had just gotten together with a friend, Jessie, who lives in Paris and is our Montclair neighbor. THey’d met for drinks near where Jessie lives–literally short blocks from where one of the restaurant shootings happened. Fortunately they’d met early in the evening. Baldwin had wanted to meet at 9 and Jessie suggested meeting at 6, after she got off work. They had a great time and by 10 were heading home. Baldwin was on the metro when they the first attack happened. I can’t even process all of this. I’m grateful beyond words that my child is safe and I’m also so sad for the innocent people whose lives were taken away. People ask me all the time how I feel about having her so far away. I’ve raised my children to fly the nest, to be citizens of the world. I want them to see and explore, but with the world the way it is now, the reality that random deadly acts happen anywhere anytime has put a real dent in this philosophy. As a mother, you also want to hold your children close and protect them.
One of my best friends moved from New York to Sydney a few months ago. She just checked in with me to see how I was doing, having checked directly in with Baldwin. I love that she and my Joni have their own relationship with Baldwin. Anyway, Eleanore asked how I was feeling.
I feel weird, I told her. First I was just relieved and grafeful and I’m still those things, but I’m restless and can’t relax. I’m pushing away fear, which has probably been inside of me since she left home on August 18th. I don’t let myself worry about her too much. I don’t let my mind go wild with the what ifs that I’m oh so good at and then and then something so henious happens, something that even in my wildest, I wouldn’t have imagined.
I hadn’t cried at all until an hour or so ago when CNN flashed a picture of a student, Nohemi Gonzales, an American from California, also doing her junior year abroad. She was killed. As we watched the report, Cliff said, “She’s somebody’s Baldwin” and I lost it. The reality that that girl could’ve been ours and so heart-broken for the reality that is for the Gonzales family.