Family Life, Feature Story

Our Children Deserve Better

Yesterday, Travis and I took the kids to Eastern Market Art Park to hang out for a little bit. I had noticed the new art park while I was at the Michigan Renaissance Festival Kickoff Party.

My kids love art and city parks so I thought they’d love to see the new park. We brought bubbles and puzzles for the kids to play with and we just walked around and admired the beautiful, vibrant artwork.

It had been raining off and on so we brought our umbrellas with us just in case. As soon as we got to the park, we noticed there was a rainbow shining over Eastern Market. Of course, we pulled out our cellphones to start snapping pictures. The timing was just so perfect!

Good Life Detroit
Good Life Detroit

My three little ones– Zhen, Zechariah, and Zephaniah– happily ran through the park blowing bubbles and playing a game of tag. Later, they sat at one of the colorful picnic tables and worked on a puzzle with Travis.

My teen daughter Michala was in photography heaven at the art park. She quickly walked from one art object to the next, snapping photos of her favorite scenes. She wanted to share all of her favorite images with her friends on Instagram.

Meanwhile, my teen son Elijah sat near the entrance of the park to keep watch over his little brothers and sister. Being the oldest of the family, he always gets in his big brother mode whenever we’re out and about with the little ones. I never have to ask him to help us watch them because he just naturally does it on his own.

Eastern Market Art Park
Eastern Market Art Park

Later at home, I looked over the pictures I captured of our visit to the art park. It made me smile to see my children so happy and enjoying the simplicity of a visit to an art park.

I couldn’t help but think of the recent mass shootings that occurred over the weekend. TWO mass shootings in one weekend?

IT’S BEYOND HEARTBREAKING!

I can’t even imagine what the survivors, and all who are hurting right now, are going through at this moment.

I got to thinking about what kind of life I want for my kids. I want better for my children. I don’t want them to grow up in a world filled with hate, pain, and violence. They deserve better than that.

ALL of our children deserve better — your children and my children.

Eastern Market Art Park
Good Life Detroit

When I heard about the mass shootings in El Paso, TX and Dayton, OH, I had to really take a moment to think about what I wanted to say.

The tragic deaths are heartbreaking, to say the least. My heart also hurts for the survivors, families, friends, and communities who are hurting and recovering from this unfathomable pain.

Simply, saying “I’m praying for you all” or quoting a Bible verse just didn’t seem enough to me.

Of course, I’m praying.

I just wish I could do more than extend my condolences because I’m so tired of this happening!

What the fuck is going on in our country?! Why does this keep happening? I have so many questions!

Eastern Market Art Park
Eastern Market Art Park

It’s sad that you become almost numb to bad news, doesn’t it?

But I don’t want to become numb to it. I don’t want to get used to it. I want something to CHANGE. I want to keep asking questions and demanding better for our children and our country.

This should NEVER be our normal way of life.

Yesterday, Elijah shared with me how he feels about the shootings. It honestly surprised me because we weren’t even talking about it. I was putting on makeup in the bathroom and Elijah just walked up and shared with me his feelings.

He said he doesn’t understand why there are mass shootings and he’s angry it keeps happening. The look on Elijah’s face was hard to see. He was visibly angry and concerned.

It was upsetting for me to see my son so mad and hurt. We shouldn’t even have to have conversations like this with our children, you know?

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I’m not a community leader or a politician, but I do know this violence has to end.

I’m heartbroken for the El Paso and Dayton communities. I’m heartbroken for all who are hurting right now. My prayers are with everyone, but I’m also praying for a solution to all of this.

What is the right solution and what can we do to help??

Not to sound trite, but I’m praying for a world filled with more joy, love, and peace for my kids and all of the children everywhere.

BECAUSE OUR CHILDREN DESERVE BETTER!

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All photographs are courtesy of Jennifer Hamra for Good Life Detroit.

What are your thoughts?