The weight of last Friday's tragic shooting in a Connecticut elementary school has been suffocating me for three days. I spend a lot of time in denial - actively not thinking about it and forcing it out of my mind when it tries creeping in again. One can only cry so much.
But, when you write a blog and are committed to posting on a regular schedule, it's often hard to avoid talking about whatever is consuming you. I honestly thought I'd be posting about The Hobbit in IMAX 3D today since I saw the movie on Friday. Unfortunately, I saw it WHILE the tragedy was taking place and when I came out of the theater and realized that something huge had happened while I was enjoying Middle Earth, it made me feel horribly guilty and took the wind out of the Hobbit sails.
So, I don't want to go down the rabbit hole any further. I don't want to wallow in the incredible pain I feel when I think about what happened. But, by the same token, I don't want to pretend it didn't happen.
Enter my wise friend Cassandra who said, "Talk about positivity."
She's right, you know. She and I both believe that we create our own experience through how we approach the world. What you focus on grows. If I'm a Negative Nelly all the time, I will only see more negativity in my world. If I stay positive and focus on the good, more good with come with it.
How do we find the "good" in something this devasting? One ray of positivity came from a reprint of an old Mr. Rogers piece on talking to kids about scary things. This has been making the round on Facebook since Friday and, while I'm sure that many of you have already seen this, I think it bears repeating (over and over.)
"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.' To this day especially in times of “disaster,” I remember my mothers’ words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world."Full of wisdom and always looking for the positive in the world, Fred Rogers kept us (children and adults alike) focused on what mattered - love and light.
I'd like to encourage you to visit the Fred Rogers Company's page "Tragic Events in the News". It's full of wonderful guidance for how to help your children deal with tragedy. Frankly, it's advice that we can all use.
Chin up friends. Stay positive. Look for the helpers.