Wednesday, May 27, 2009

When Tragedy Strikes

Dealing with events like a sudden death, illness, accident, etc., never gets easy. When I was recently informed of a tragedy that affected someone I care about, I initially felt lost, overwhelmed and greatly saddened. I listened, gave my condolences and tentative advice, and cried over what happened, all of which has helped me greatly. Still, these questions remain: How do I make sense of something that makes no sense at all? How do I help those who are suffering the most?

It often happens when we least expect it. When I hear, experience or witness something terrible (which thankfully isn’t that often) I am in a state of disbelief and shock that eventually subsides, so I can begin dealing with what has happened. I have also observed that when tragedy strikes, we as human beings show our true selves and individual strengths in ways we may never have before. Tragedy strikes us all, and it is up to us to learn from it, and to hopefully move on with the rest of our lives. I know this is easier said than done; we all want to know why bad things happen, and all religions and spiritual beliefs give us different philosophies on the subject. Ultimately, I believe that that there are things we are not meant to understand completely, but I have faith in a benevolent force that is with always with us, especially during the darkest periods of our lives.

As for how we can help others during difficult times, I try to be a good listener, without resorting to giving out unsolicited advice. When people are in mourning, I also avoid saying things like “it was meant to be” or “it is God’s will,” because these are not statements I want to hear if I am in a similar situation. It may be fine to mention it, but to be insistent on the subject can be too much. Ultimately, we must treat those who grieve as carefully and respectfully as possible.

How do handle tragedy in your own lives? How do you help others?

1 comment:

Original Designer Woman said...

I cope with whatever needs to be dealt with at the time. I don't hide my feeling unless truly necessary. I think of life this way; we are all going to die someday and nothing can stop it so when and if it happens to someone I love or know I will think of it as a way of life or I begin to reflect on the times we shared and ask my higher power for guidance to move on.

Zanade Mann

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