nothing but unimaginable

Today is a weirdly gray day in New York City– looking like the heavens are going to open up at any minute even though no rain is predicted. The skies are the very definition of gloom. And it feels right, because today all of us– especially those of us who live in New York City– are in total shock over the horrible loss suffered by the Krim family. It was, as the New York Times put it, “a scene of almost unimaginable horror,” and I’m not going to bother repeating the details because if you’re a parent you know them already.

It’s the Upper West Side details that get to me, of course: their house number, on a block well known to me. The art classes the mother taught, in the same playground where my children play. The mother turning to the doorman in her confusion (which may sound strange only to those who don’t also live in a building with a doorman, there to protect them, protect their children, from the dangers of life in New York City). And the blog Marina Krim kept, doting on her three young children’s every move, “near getting cheesy,” as she put it, at explaining just how much she loved them.

Most familiar of all: the nanny, part of their lives, part of the family, someone the Krims trusted implicitly. Over at Babble, my friend Marinka wrote about the predictable and disgusting trolls commenting online that this is what happens to people who don’t raise their own children. (Missing the point that this mother did stay at home– not that that should make it any more or less tragic.) I think that’s a regrettable but human impulse at work there: we look for the unlocked side door that gave the evil access so that we can say, well that would never happen to me.

But this? This shouldn’t have happened to ANYONE. It is nothing but unimaginable. Let’s band together and do the right thing here. As Lisa Belkin wrote today on The Huffington Post:

When there are no words, that’s when they are needed most. The way to use them now is to send heartbroken condolences to the Krim family. And tell your children you love them.

Marina, Kevin, Nessie, we are so sorry for your loss.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathy at kissing the frog October 27, 2012 at 1:31 pm

I hate that this happened to this family. And I hate even more some of the comments I have been reading, especially those in the vein of, “If the mom had just stayed home and done her job…” Sick people who do not understand. I am a stay at home mom who has always relied on babysitters and nannies to give me a break from having to drag all four of my children with me everywhere I go. It gives them a break, too, because they don’t want to have to go everywhere with you all the time. I am currently without nanny help because I just had a bad feeling about the last one. Probably unjustified, it was mostly about her husband and a nagging feeling I had. But what if there is no nagging feeling – ever? As parents, none of us ever knows when something will happen – could be an accident, a serious illness (as happened to my son), or an unimaginable tragedy like this. This is the cruelty of life. It is not the parents or children’s fault. Shame on all the trolls for jumping on this one. My heart is heavy for the Krims.


amywlsn October 31, 2012 at 8:01 pm

Shame on the trolls, Kathy, I agree. Ms. Krim was at her daughter’s swimming lesson when this happened- what’s the lesson there? that if you devote your time to enriching your children’s lives, you’re asking to be punished? It’s disgusting.


Susan Marie Wells October 28, 2012 at 10:57 pm

Thank you for your article. You wrote the nicest and most applaudable thoughts on this than anything I have read. I am in pain just hearing that this happened to those innocent children who put their trust in a stranger and for the parents who do the best to open their lives up to others and include them in their lives. My thoughts and prayers are towards all of them during this time.


amywlsn October 31, 2012 at 8:00 pm

Thanks Susan.


Courtney October 30, 2012 at 3:44 pm

It’s hard for me to read the details of this horrible act. I cry just thinking about those beautiful children. There are no answers. Life is cruel, people can be cruel, and sometimes, it’s hard to find hope in a moment of darkness.


amywlsn October 31, 2012 at 7:59 pm

A friend of mine said his brain can’t quite wrap around it and yet he can’t stop thinking about it, either. that’s how I feel.


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