When I woke up last Monday morning I checked Twitter before I did anything else. That’s what I often do incase there is any important news. If something important has happened my Twitter friends will be talking about it.

When I read that there was a shooting at Chardon High School I immediately called my mom. My cousins live in Chardon and attend public school there. My oldest cousin is in Chardon middle school and her boyfriend attends Chardon High School. My mom had already talked to my aunt who was very upset. I was worried for their safety even though they were in neighboring schools.

When you first hear there is a shooting you don’t really know what to think. Was anyone actually shot? Were any kids shot, teachers, parents, etc?

I wrote on my aunts Facebook page “I’m thinking of you guys and hope you and all your friends and their families are ok”. I later learned they weren’t ok. They had friends, neighbors and classmates that had been shot. It was heartbreaking and I couldn’t focus on anything else.

I’m very familiar with Chardon, Ohio. Growing up I went there often. My family has always lived in that area. We attended the Maple Syrup festival many times, attended Christmas Eve mass at St. Mary’s, stopped by the penny candy store in the square on the drive to my grandparent’s house.

You hear about bad things happening all over the world but this hit close to home. My cousins could have easily been in danger and now they have to remember this tragedy that affected everyone around them.

As a new mom I feel that news like this affects me differently than before I had my daughter. I worry about how I will ever keep her safe. The parents of the victims have recently spoke to the media and all I can think of is how do they compose themselves to speak about their deceased child. They must be strong people with a lot of support behind them.