Dealing with senseless tragedy
Real Relationship Advice
There are so many things to say about what happened in Aurora, Colorado, however, the words are useless to those who are grieving from the senseless loss. There are those who choose this time to step up on their soapbox and push their agenda and there are those so deeply in shock that the words would be hollow and trite. There are so many ways to feel and yet we think that everyone should be in black with their heads hanging in mourning. These are all the effects of senseless tragedy and how we proceed from here will dictate how we will ultimately deal with the loss of life and security.
First, for those of us who were not physically hurt or had a friend or loved one affected by this horrific event, it is not your job to carry the torch of pain of the victims. Our job is to be grateful for our lives and safety and send prayers, love and light to those who were affected. There is nothing wrong with being relieved. It seems as if our nation goes into this bizarre survivor’s guilt whenever we suffer a tragedy. We saw this in 9/11. We saw this after Columbine. We saw this after the Oklahoma bombing.
Survivor’s guilt is not only a sense of shame for surviving but rather a sense of relief of ‘thank God it was them and not me’. We feel mortified that we could be that crass and shallow as to feel happy and appreciative that we were spared that we create an incredible shame which projects itself as if we are in mourning. We portray this role of ‘if only I could switch places’ with those lost. Our shame makes sure no one ever finds out how we really felt after the loss.
Some people fill their days with a sense of purpose to protect the integrity of the mourning and we become indignant that others are celebrating life or just having a life. Now, realistically, there are those who are so selfish that they cannot extend an ounce of compassion to those in pain. However, there are those of us who can feel bad for those who are hurt and suffering and turn around and live our life; relieved that we are safe, sound and healthy. Yet those grief police who troll the internet and our life are there to keep the pain alive in an attempt to hide their own shame.
Finally, life goes on. There will be bills to pay. There will be good days. There will be bad days. Someday, you may experience a loss which will shake you to your foundation. On such a day we wish you all the support you will need to overcome your pain and grief. When someone else suffers a hurt, remember it is good to be grateful to be alive and fortunate that our loved ones are well, do not feel shame. We are capable of so many feelings at once. Do not limit yourself with shame.
For those affected by the horrible tragedy, the victims, families, law enforcement and those in the Aurora area, we wish you all peace and light in this dark hour. We will pray for all of you. We pray for healing of those wounded, peace for those in pain, consolation for those grieving and dealing with the meaningless loss of life and horror that very sick man wrought.
For the rest of us, we must celebrate the gift of life every day, regardless of what evil besets other parts of the world. For today, we are here.