Few things are more terrifying than knowing your child is in danger.
But that's exactly what actress and author Sarah Wine-Thyre experienced when she learned that her school-aged kids were in a lockdown situation.
The Strangers with Candy actress tweeted about the incident earlier this month
What followed was a series of tweets from her 12-year-old daughter's perspective, telling her mom about the horrifying ordeal.
This afternoon, I received text alerts from my kids' school that they were on lockdown. I thought you might like to… https://t.co/gTQuRGZqCm— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528320614.0
First, her daughter explains her initial reaction
It's pretty inspiring to know that 12-year-olds are willing to overlook each other's cooties to hold their classmates and bring them comfort.
was really scared and crying really hard. We thought we were going to die. I said just in case we die, let's rememb… https://t.co/UVEdyQJhkC— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528320811.0
Then came a little prepubescent sass
"It's a private joke, mom." — Us, always.
"What song was that?" I asked, holding back tears or sadness and rage. 12yo: "Come On Eileen." Me: "Really?" Her: "… https://t.co/iTBNZgAhoJ— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528320904.0
The lockdown was in place for nearly an hour
"Shaken and giddy" is just about the reaction we would expect — the excitement of being young and part of something larger than yourself, but also the terror of being young and not having a clue about the potential danger.
I didn't want to turn the whole thing into a joke, so I asked her to describe it some more. When I picked her up, a… https://t.co/OlW5SlMDBZ— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528320985.0
According to Thyre's daughter, the most terrifying thing about the experience was the quiet
It's the not knowing what will happen next that is usually the worst part. What her daughter said next nearly broke our hearts.
12yo: "No, everything was really quiet bc they want it to seem like no one is there so the intruder goes away. We w… https://t.co/CexIHurJ8T— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528321083.0
Drills never seem real until you're faced with the real thing
With the recent epidemic of gun-related school massacres, all lockdowns — whether they are drills or actual emergencies — have to be taken more seriously than ever.
We've done drills but we knew this was for real. We were all sure we were going to die, Mom. I'm so glad we didn't die."— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528321302.0
Thyre let it be known where she stands with the second amendment
Especially after hearing her daughter's experience, this mom knows all too well that "the price of freedom" is far too steep to justify any longer.
A child's experience of a lockdown is one of terror. They don't know what's happening until it's over. Plenty of pe… https://t.co/TLhEyCSrRN— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528321436.0
She concludes with one last chilling detail
Cue the goosebumps.
One more thing the 12yo said? "There was one spot where the blinds weren't down all the way and we kept staring at… https://t.co/h3CcIACb0M— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528321794.0
Hundreds of users chimed in to thank Thyre for sharing her daughter's storyThey acknowledge that the fear a child feels when his or her safety is compromised is just as scarring (if not more so) for that child's parents.
And just like the children in Thyre's daughter's classroom, the Twittersphere reached out with virtual embraces
Fellow parents could especially relate to Thyre's thread. Other users weren't satisfied by just offering comfort, however...
@AnyaBeaupre @SeanRobbins13 Emailed my daughter's teachers to thank them. And tell them they shouldn't have to do this.— Sarah Thyre (@Sarah Thyre)1528340292.0
Many others had similar stories of their own
Cartoonist Emily Flake recounted the time her own child experienced a lockdown situation.
@SarahThyre @hodgman The first time my 5yo blithely said the words “soft lockdown” to me when I asked her about sch… https://t.co/ytWlUqeND2— Emily Flake (@Emily Flake)1528334380.0
Others expressed fear not just for students, but for their teachers
When a shooter enters a school, it isn't just students who are put at risk — it's also those who are entrusted to guide them.
@SarahThyre my mom is about to finally retire and i hate that i’m happy i can finally breathe that she won’t be working in a school😣— lauren ashley bishop (@lauren ashley bishop)1528341149.0
Twitter users reflected on whether a teacher really is responsible for the lives of their students as well as their educations
As far as we know, gun tutorials aren't included with teaching certifications.
@SarahThyre @sbellelauren I remember my favorite teacher talking to us about lock downs and saying that she would d… https://t.co/OVR4w1SbZN— Burgandy (@Burgandy)1528347043.0
The conversation also took a turn to what could be done to change this
If you're still offering prayers and blessings, then you really need to turn on the news more often.
@JohnEBakerIII @SarahThyre @CateWalton59 @shannonrwatts My niece is a teacher & she literally said to me yesterday,… https://t.co/68ry894cue— Lindy Jayne (@Lindy Jayne)1528351740.0
But one user offered the most compelling solution with — strangely enough — the song lyrics that Thyre's daughter sang with her friend earlier that day
Children today are far too young and clever to resign themselves to their fate and let gun violence continue. Whatever the secret is, we want in. Now go share this with the bravest parents and teachers you know!
@SarahThyre @TrumpsareNazis "These people 'round here Wear beat down eyes sunk in smoke dried faces They're resigne… https://t.co/Ha1y98Mp7s— SC-SIC (@SC-SIC)1528326295.0