A small voice interrupted our horrified silence with “Daddy, change the channel, I don’t want to watch this movie.” How we wished it was a movie. How could we tell our four-year-old it wasn’t? How could we believe the carnage of 9/11 was deliberate?
From my childhood, I remember the morning they found Pierre Laporte’s slain body —a day after my parents assured me the FLQ were merely trying to make a political point but wouldn’t hurt anyone.
How do you explain evil to a child and reassure them of their safety? How do we recover from these events that erode our basic sense of security?
Even though we’ve all aged since 9/11 and perhaps grown more jaded, the past week’s Boston bombings and destroyed lives are no less jarring.
A recent post from Sesame Street recommends reassuring children that parents, teachers, law enforcers, and members of their community are doing everything possible to keep them safe from harm. Likewise, Presbyterian minister Fred Rogers (aka Mr. Rogers) once said: “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You’ll always find people who are helping.’”
I searched for comforting quotes from Gandhi and others. A “When Life Makes You Think” post from Digital Strategist Hessie Jones took a similar approach.
- The Good Outnumber You and We Always Will
- Stories of Kindness After the Bombing
- Heroic First Responders at the Boston Marathon
- Kindness Amid Chaos
- If You Are Losing Faith in Human Nature, Go Out and Watch a Marathon
Thank-you to all those who showed us the very best we can be, amid the very worst.