I woke up after about 3 hours of sleep and decided not to sleep through my 8am for the second time this week. I got up, showered, dressed and took Daisy outside, like any other day. I texted my groupmes, and had a very interesting class about Southern Drama. I met up with my friend and classmate and we had breakfast, when we got the text.
"Maroon Alert: Starkville Campus.
Active shooter report at Carpenter Hall. Seek safety immediately"
We stared at each other, then got up and things got crazy. Everyone in the union kind of stopped collectively and then the buzz started; "Is this real? What do you do? Where do we go?" Then the running. We ran, everyone ran, and we were running for our lives. And the thing that upsets me is that, even if the suspect never had a gun, and no shots were fired, those words "active shooter" and us not knowing/trusting that he didn't have a gun causes very pure and very real terror. A lot of people smushed into a classroom and we hid under and behind desks. I called my mom, and as my mom and I spoke the room went silent, and someone began praying. I was crying and my breath was shaking as I listened to her asking for protection and my mom telling me that I was okay, and the girl next to me, who I had never seen before in my life, held my hand. We left the building after an all clear was issued, but even then all of our nerves were shaken, and the paranoia set in as we thought there was another assailant on campus. When I made it to Dorman hall, my friend Daniel called me and consoled me, and after that I walked to his apartment and he drove me and my friend home. Overall, the day was the scariest day of my life. Even though, as I said earlier, he apparently never had a weapon, and no shots were fired, the fear and panic that we all, as a student body, felt collectively, was very real. Running blindly, not knowing that you aren't being followed by someone with a weapon that can kill in one shot, hearing my friends say "I love you guys" and truly not knowing if you will ever see any of them again, and feeling absolutely 100% powerless in the situation is absolutely terrible. All I wanted in those last possible moments was to hold my dog and be held by Jorge and to see my family and to let them all know that I loved them. But even after everything was over, one good thing came of this ordeal. I feel a true bond with my bulldog family, and I feel that when push comes to shove even if we may be awful people over yik yak or yeti, etc, we all come together and help each other out in the end. This experience, while truly terrifying, was one of the most beautiful moments of my life.