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    Posted April 8, 2014 by
    ErinShwatty
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    Coping with the latest tragedy

     
    Somewhere in the Indian Ocean, rescue crews are searching for a missing Malaysia Airlines plane. Here in my home of Washington state, we are facing loss of at least 29 people from a recent mudslide. On this evening’s news, I just learned about a murder-suicide with four victims at Fort Hood military base in Texas. Oh, and E! News reports that Miley Cyrus’ dog died – because that is really important in the grand scheme of things.

    There is so much unending tragedy and sadness. Having experienced a tragedy that has left my family and me forever changed, I am extra sensitive to events in which people are facing immense loss. These feelings get so big and overwhelming that I need to take a time out. I feel emotionally fried, and I know I’m not alone.

    This is what my time out from tragedy looks like in three steps.

    Breathe. Breathe some space in between you are your overwhelming thoughts and emotions. Turn of the TV and distance yourself from the media reports, and keep breathing.
    Be grateful. With each breath, give thanks for someone or something in your life that often is overlooked. Are you starting to feel the love?
    Be present. Finally realizing that you cannot save the world, begin to do what you can within your means. Maybe this is a donation of what would have cost you a latte; maybe you can take steps toward making sure you are prepared for a potential emergency with the necessary supplies and plans; or maybe it is doing a little volunteering here and there to change the future of the issue at hand.

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