when you get the “active shooter in the building” text

this is one of the worst texts you will ever receive.
i was gonna turn my phone off for the day too.
after today,
i won’t be doing that anymore.
so my best home vixen texted me that this morning.
it was like the world stopped at that very moment.
the amount of fear that gripped my body just now…
i can’t even put it into font.
i instantly started crying.
she is in maryland; i’m in new yawk.
all the thoughts that went through my head…

should i call?
but what if she was hiding?
what if me calling gave it away?
why isn’t she replying?

is she safe?
have i told her that i loved her lately?

i was consumed with dread.
waiting for a text back felt like hours.
all i could do was sit and think.
these are the next set of texts:

i started crying even worse than before.
this is the forests now.
at any moment,
we all could receive a text like this.
from our parents,
siblings,
best friends,
or significant others.
worst of all,
if we’re the ones sending the text to one of those folks.
now i know how those family members felt on the receiving end.
the ones who lost loved ones in all of those various shootings.
i’m so grateful she is okay.

lowkey: she just told me she has been preparing for this.
she had her escape plan,
but even in the depth of fear,
she was shook.

Author: jamari fox

the fox invited to the blogging table.

3 thoughts on “when you get the “active shooter in the building” text

  1. This kind of thing is always in the back of my mind when I go anywhere now that we are living under Orange Satan regimen. I gotta admit foxhole when I go anywhere now especially to the movies, the mall, nightclubs, I always look for the exits and I am always a tad bit paranoid that something may pop off. Nowadays I really only feel comfortable in my own home or people I am close too. When I need to do something, I get in and get out.

    At work, we have special codes and badges to access the building, but I always wonder who is going to check a disgruntled employee handbag. Since I have been on my job, we have gotten bomb threats and been on high alert when someone claimed they were going to shoot up the building. Luckily, we have the option to work from home.

    It is so much tension going on right now in our country, thanks to these crazy white supremacist and Orange Satan supporters who are calling the cops on us and threatening a civil war to maintain their status. It is a crazy world and it leads to anxiety and paranoia, before long we are all going to be prisoners in our own homes.

  2. I would break down too. When Columbine happened, my younger self thought to write a letter to my parents, God forbid. September 11th, I thought about a will.

    I’ve considered seeking apps that I’d add a pre-written message to and it’d forward it to loved ones in the event I died.

    But what if it glitched and sent it now? What if I thought I was dying, survive, but gave someone a heart attack?

    I’m afraid of leaving things left unsaid.

    The whole “I’m sure they knew”, isn’t comforting.

    Check in on people. Don’t say things when someone leaves that you couldn’t live with, being your last words to them.

    And stop saying, “He seemed nice, just quiet” after people lose lives. Speak up NOW. We know when someone is off. Take threats seriously.

    You can be anonymous. Instead of worrying who people sleep with, worry about ACTUAL suspicious behavior that could save lives. Not Black people living in their Blackness.

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