Updated: Feb 5
School Shootings; two words that should never be used together in the same sentence. Two words designed to make you, stop. Stop and read.
So after hours of typing and watching my words disappear in front of my too tired to see eyes, all while clicking publish; I will begin again. It could actually be very easy not to & to forgo this. But I won't. Going into this, when I decided to build a window in, for the whole world to see, I also promised to always be true to myself & write about things I felt the world needed to hear; sometimes happy, sometimes sad, sometimes good, sometimes bad. I feel I have earned my stripes, sort of speak, in saying that, so I will continue.
What turned into me leaving my #laptop home for a peaceful morning ride of dropping our prized possessions off to their #God-sent #school ended with a very tightly tied knot in the pit of my stomach. Let me try to take you back to where this article once began; me in the passenger seat, scrambling to put on my four-year-olds new favorite song, 'Easy On Me,' encouraging her to sing like #Adele, my speed-driven fingers slide #accidentally into a random news app. #News? Who has time for information of any sort at 7:30 in the morning when they hadn't even mentally sipped their morning cup of coffee yet, let alone brewed it? Definitely not I.
With that being said, there was only one direction it was going from there; with me being present in the car, that was. On went the nightly news from #Wednesday, December 1, 2021. Why? Because like so many of us, I wanted, well, answers at that moment. Everyone here reading knew the direction our car was heading, most likely the same as where you were #traveling to at that very moment. And while we can't all keep replaying Adele, living in the bliss of ignorance, I somehow still wish we could. But we can not; the music must be paused, & no matter how hard it is to hear, we all need to listen. And there it was.
The voice of a familiar man came through my car radio speaker. On with it already. As I waited to hear about this horrific day in history, I was left waiting, listening to all of Wednesday's news highlights, all while two children patiently waited for the music of any sort to come back on. At that point, Lester seems too focused on... Omicron & a whole variety of other worldwide dilemmas. Lying in wait, with a head that felt like exploding and a car that had since gone silent, still nothing.
In what world; in who's; should we ever hear the news reporting politics before the fact that our children are no longer safe, in what should be their safest place? Not one thing should come before this; nothing should ever be more important than getting this message out.. and finally, there it came. Names being read, dreams being communicated by a gentle voice calming the cars' hearts. Kids speaking, “ I didn’t know if I was ever going to see my parents again,” and with that, I held back tears and took an actual minute to, cry.
As a Pediatric #Nurse, #Life #Coach, & #Spiritual #Grief #Counselor, I spent the last several days reflecting & meditating on figuring out a way to rewrite this article in a way that it could reach as many of the shaken as it could, without being explicit in any way, shape, or form.
How could any one of us even try to put ourselves into the shoes of Michigan to provoke so much change that we could #heal every single broken heart affected by this senseless tragedy? How can we restore the broken? So on I will write in hopes this has the potential of reaching as many as it possibly can.
Schools & #shootings should never have the ability to go together into the same sentence, period. On a whole, as a country, you & I are in desperate need of coming together to make sure that they never do, again. #Change is critical. #Safety & #security is essential in our lives and in our schools. If we stay on this track I fear one day we are going to wake up into a world we don’t want to leave the house from. With all this I’m left sitting here confused. In whose hands are we in exactly? Who is the person with the true authority to provoke change in this politically driven, mess?
What about Michigans "parents"? Where are all of these families right now? The ones everyone is busy reporting on, like they even know. Isn't it December? Hanukkah? Isn’t Christmas coming? How? Why? How?
These are some tough questions, I know. With that a daunting sense of de-javu settles deep into my stomach. Why does this tragedy feel so, familiar? And as every hair in my body rises; it was. And nearly a decade later, I am writing the article I should have written in 2012. How will #Michigan, #Detroit, & our country; heal? How can our world heal if it is constantly met with the same fate?
Healing after a traumatic event can be one of the most challenging areas to focus on. With trauma layered so deep, it takes a total #commitment, consistency, and willingness to even; accept. And then there are the children, those children, those #students, the young adults; how will they know how to heal? The ones that got to go home that day, or the ones left.. waiting? How can we help? How can we make sure that this tragedy doesn't just vanish into thin air like the rest?
While the answers seem obvious I realize they couldn't possibly be. Sometimes it’s easy to get so caught up in our own noise that we forget to put the volume back up. We no longer can allow this to happen. #Change is the only way this world will continue going round. We all have to commit to being present and aware. Aware of the suffering others are feeling so that we can provoke the change that is needed in our country and in our world, in order for us to heal. Commit to helping the ones that are silently suffering at home, wishing for someone like us to, call.
Despite, once a popular belief of mine; ignorance isn’t bliss. Being present in our #child's life shapes who they later become. The responsibility is on us, as #parents, to look for the signs, before they even start. To educate ourselves. We can be there. We can give love and show love and help heal. We can seek out. The same way so many at home know how to use the good old internet to google search and find, let’s try by giving back. Put your energy into that; see how powerful you become.
Our world can not do this alone; you & I can not. We need to face the personal reasons our children cry, or sometimes even worse, remain too silent. When we avoid, fires get started. When fires get started, flames fuel. We do not ever want to be why this world runs out of water.
Start by being present. Take yourself back to when you were a kid. What were the words you wished to hear from your parents; that they never said? Thinking back on it now, there were so many times that I needed someone present but I remained quiet; silently crying. Knowing that, in combination with what I know now, I wish I could go back in time and talk to my younger self. Every parent should wish the same, I suppose. And after we are done wishing, open up your eyes, and see. Not that you just "wasted a wish", but see that your wish already has come true. Look no further than beside you, to find the one who needs to hear those words the most.
And, if you take one thing & one thing only from this article; take this, give back. In any way, you can. Certify to heal. There are so many varieties that still need mastering in counseling; so many niches. Go out there and find yours. There are many different ways to encourage and to heal the #grief-stricken, even some being from the comfort of your own home. By realizing we are all human and that we no longer have the right to judge anyone, for any decision they once had made, we will then be able to transmit compassion and love to everyone we meet. Seek and you will find. Give and it will come back, tenfold. So as angry at myself I am for allowing this to get me, well, angry, I am not. The truth is I hope this angers you too. Passion is what fuels the grounds that we walk on. Passion is the fuel. Without it, there is no fire. Find yours, and when you find it, fuel it.. And when you are done fueling it, light the match and... Go.
Christine Poccia, #RN