Sometimes, what is happening in the world affects us in ways we cannot imagine. Today, I am sad. I am owning my feelings today and will be working through the sadness as best I can. I will not allow it to overtake me or to linger too long; nevertheless, it is there and I acknowledge it.
While the ‘reason’ for the sadness is not something for which I am personally attached, and there may be little I can actually do to prevent the catalyst from recurring, I am still sad.
Yesterday was Valentine’s Day. Yesterday was Ash Wednesday. A day that should have been filled with celebration, love, wonder, peace and prayer.
How will February 14, 2018, be remembered? Yesterday was the shooting at a High School in Parkland, Florida. Yesterday, thousands of parent’s and children’s lives changed forever. Yesterday, millions of people around the world gasped for breath and watched or listened in shock as children and their teachers were innocently murdered. Yesterday was not the first, nor will it be the last time this vileness happens. Yesterday will not soon end for many.
I don’t really know if holding these families in my thoughts and prayers helps them; I do know it helps me. And while I am not personally impacted with a child attending that school and do not have a friend or family member who suffered a loss there, my thought is: “There but for the grace of God, go I.” And, I am certain that sentiment is uttered by many. It could have been any of us…
How do we (those perhaps not directly impacted) move forward through this feeling of sadness, particularly as we are inundated with pictures and stories on the news and social media?
For me – it is first to acknowledge the sadness, the loss, the misery of those directly enduring this event. It is to allow my tears to fall and know that my question of ‘Why?’ can never be satisfactorily answered. It is to shift from ‘why’ to ‘what’, as in What can I do? It is a call to action.
For some, that call to action may have a direct impact on the victims and their families such as financial assistance, medical or mental health support, cards or words of encouragement, etc. For others, the call to action may be a stronger voice and involvement in the political arena or within their own community. Some may answer the call to action on a more personal front – with prayer, writing, music, connection with friends or family. What do you do to answer the call? What is your next small, sweet step to shift the sadness in a positive and productive manner? What do you do to create a space of well-being?
Yes, I acknowledge the sadness that I am feeling. And as time ticks forward, I am intent on: becoming clear on the contributions I am making; shifting my focus to what has meaning for me in this world; answering my call to action; easing the struggle of sadness and unrest; demonstrating gratitude for all I have and all that is to come.
The struggle ends when the gratitude begins.- Neale Donald Walsch