This morning we all woke up to another horrible and senseless violent act. Nine people lost their lives in a church in Charleston, South Carolina due to a hate crime. I want to send my sincerest condolences to anyone effected personally by this crime who happens to stumble across this blog. I cannot fathom your pain, and I hope you can keep moving forward in life after you grieve. You are all in my thoughts.
My daughter is still too young to ask about events like this, but she is getting closer and closer to that age. Right now her obliviousness to the horrors of the world is an endearing trait of childhood. However, she is growing up and the questions will come soon enough. When the time does come I don’t know exactly how I will explain these things to her, especially since the awfulness of it all is so hard for me to understand myself. I would love to think these horrible events will stop, but there will always be people who hurt the innocent.
I think when we talk to our children, we have to focus on the fact that although we cannot prevent all the evil in the world we can do our part to add more kindness to it. We should tip the scales whenever we get a chance. We need to teach our children to help when they can, even if it is inconvenient. We need to teach them to speak up for people who need a voice, even if it isn’t the popular thing to do. We need to teach them that although we cannot stop evil acts from happening, we can help restore lives, families, and communities in the aftermath. We can’t teach our kids these things with empty words, they have to see it in our actions.
Whenever there are horrible events in the world, we should look for the helpers. The people that are giving their time and energy to rebuild and heal. On top of that, whenever possible, we need to be the helpers that our children see. Not just on the worst days, but everyday. We need to do the little things, so when the big things happen helping has just become part of our nature. We need to show our children that they are responsible for the good in the world, and it isn’t a hands off process.
Unfortunately, there will be horrible acts by horrible people until the end of time. However, I truly believe that people are inherently good, and the beauty and kindness in this world outweighs the bad a thousand to one. Let’s just make sure to show our children that as often as we can.