Monday, April 22, 2013

Living a Normal Life in Traumatic Times

First the Newtown murders, now the Boston Marathon Bombing - is your family on overload? It's hard enough to steer your family through the push and pull of living with an out of control kid. Add to it a national trauma that may well involve someone you know, and your own family members could easily spiral down to a very bad place.
September 11, 2001 was such a time. We were all stunned. The skies were silent, except for the occasion scream of fighter jets flying low on patrol. We gathered round our televisions for hours at a time watching airplanes crashing into towers, and the towers collapsing, over and over.

The FlyLady ( sounded a note of encouragement. Turn off the TV and pursue comforting family activities – pull out board games, tell stories, read favorite books out loud, go for a walk together, prepare comfort foods.
Early this week blogger Nancy Schwartz ( quoted Mr. Rogers; “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’”.

Of course that was what we saw at the Boston Marathon – runners and all manner of first responders running towards the bomb blasts – their first impulse was to help. Then a few days later the hunt for the bombers began and the first casualty was MIT Police Officer Sean Collier. What got my attention was a news picture of a mom and her two elementary aged sons being escorted by officers as they brought flowers and food to the Collier home.

Our world is full of trauma – nationally, locally and personally. I would like to be that person who is helping. Taking a meal, getting together for a game night – being there. I would like to help my friends and family do normal things along with reaching out to the victims. I will pray for them, look for opportunities to donate to organizations that will help them. How about you?