I see him. I know exactly what he looks like. That little boy waiting for his mom or dad or aunt or uncle to cross the marathon finish line. His eyes are wide as he scans the crowd to wait for his loved one. I imagine him wearing a Boston Red Sox baseball cap, his hands in his jean pocket, and looking up and down and leaning forward to catch a glimpse of all of the runners.

I see her. As sweat rolls down from underneath her purple headband, she looks at her watch, wondering if her stride is fast enough to beat her previousĀ time. She sees the spectators and the finish line at the same time. One step, two steps, and she will be done. In her mind, the first thing she will do is look for her husband and son and daughter. Excited that they are here to witness her personal accomplishment, she moves forward.

Looking at the images today on the television, I cannot fathom what happened today. Runners awoke this morning expecting to finish their race and loved ones had the expectation of witnessing their accomplishments.

Instead, one little boy is gone. A mom and dad are grieving.

The same mom and dad who probably tucked their little boy in the night before. Read him a bedtime story. Told him that they loved him.

I see them. All three of them. And my heart breaks.