Unforgotten, Newtown.

I don't easily forgot some life things.  I remember when I found out my first boyfriend passed away when we both would have been in our 20s.  I remember when a family member rolled their eyes at me when I was ten years old and how the message sent with their eye roll made me feel.  I remember my favorite teacher, Mr. Sparkman, and how each and every day in his class I felt valued and cared for.  I remember how cool Lil O smelled the day she was born - strange, I know.

When 60 minutes a few weeks ago interviewed several of the families from the Newtown, CT shooting, I knew I wanted to watch the segments to help me process that event.  I am the slowest processor in the world.  It takes me sometimes years to make sense out of things.  Plus, you know how much I adore Lil O and my amazing colleges students.  How does life continue after such tragedy? A question that was actually asked of the families in the interviews below.

There are so many take-aways from watching both the segments 60 minutes aired for Part I and Part II.

Again, being the slowest processor in the world means new take-aways will come to me hours, days, weeks and years later from this blog post.

Quote credit

Four take-aways immediately resonate with me.....

You are not alone.
In the US, there is often-times a negative stigma attached with getting mental health help.  I think that is why I openly talk about my life coaching with Sue.  I want whomever is reading this post (or older posts) to know, you are not alone for even a minute.  There are trained people in the world who can help get life in order, make sense of ugly things, and provide much needed life support.  Every community in the US offers free and paid for mental health help.  We just need to help each other connect with those services without judgment.

It really takes a village.
Asking for help from others is not a sign of weakness, but a sign you understand this cliche and you understand that, "Many hands make light work."  There is such strength in numbers and I wish more collaboration, not less, would take place in our communities.  It is not me, mine, or my family's.  But, instead we and ours & us collectively.

Look in a mirror.  Make change.
One of the dads, who lost a child in the Newtown shootings, eloquently said in the 60 minute segment (Part I, I believe), "Look in mirror and say to yourself, this will never happen to me. If you think for even the slightest shadow of a doubt that it [the shooting] could happen to you or your school or your community, what will you do to change your home, school, community or country now?"  I don't think there is a human on earth who could look in the mirror and know with certainty they, their families, their communities, or their country is 100% out of harm's way.  The latest incident in Boston attests to this uncertainty.  Sadly.

There is another quote, from a different dad from the Part II segment,  that speaks to me "....we [victims of Newtown] use tragedy to evolve society."  I am forever looking for what lessons a tragedy or life's events can teach me.  Thankfully, when I can't find them, Sue or friends & family help.  For me, personally, Newtown immediately changed my energy level with Lil O.  When I am tired and cranky, do not feel like playing and Lil O obviously wants to play, I find myself thinking, "A parent from Newtown would give anything to be in my shoes right now.  I get to be with my daughter.  I get to enjoy her company."  Just that small mind shift reminds me how grateful I am to have Lil O in my life and I immediately embrace the opportunity to interact with her. 

Life is never perfect.  Which is a good thing as I said good-bye to perfect in the fall.  My goal now is to learn, evolve, embrace and hold hands to make that moment better than it was seconds before.


PS - If I can point you to Sue or another person (or service) in your community to help you make sense of the world, please email me.  I'd love to help.  Find me at jen at upcyclededucation.com