The Good is Always There

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It is important in the face of the greatest sadness we remember that the good is there.  It may not be easy to see, and it may not be strong, but it can give us hope.

This has been a sad week.  There have been so many things to process for kids and for adults in our school community.

Yesterday our school, our community, our kids and  most devastatingly, her family, said goodbye to Taylor.  Taylor was a sweet, caring, and wonderful young girl to be around.  Seeing pictures of her from Kindergarten and First Grade reminded me of so many moments that I took for granted.  We offered our sympathy and support to Taylor’s family, especially her mom.  I only really know her mom because I have her son in my class this year.  Seeing her say goodbye to her daughter was one of the most heartbreaking things I have ever experienced.  So how do we face this?

Yesterday morning I started talking with one of my colleagues and we talked about facing today.  When we talked, I told her to recognize the good.  I told her to realize that there are many people doing good things

Recently people have told me that good outshines the bad, or that we can choose how our day will be.  Sometimes that is simply not true.  Good doesn’t always outshine the bad.  Yesterday the terrible feeling of sadness was not overshadowed by good, but, the good remained.  There were people coming from different times and places in a young girl’s life that wanted to say goodbye.  There were people supporting on one another, caring for each other, and helping to hold each other together.  The good existed.  It wasn’t a good day, it was a horrible day.  Today we can face this sadness, the empty space where once there was a sweet, smiling young girl, only in knowing that like Taylor, the people around us, who cared for her, are kind and caring.  They give us hope that in a moment where sadness is at its greatest, good people still exist, and they are here.

None of that will make it easier on Taylor’s family and friends for today, but knowing that good people care about you is one of the most uplifting feelings we can give to one another.  Let’s not wait for tragedy to remind each other of this, let’s start doing it every day.

You make a difference, you matter, you are important to so many people in your life.

Facing the Worst

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I always try to start my day with a positive attitude.  “Today is going to be a great day” and all of usual positive self talk.  My goal is always to start each day with the belief that we can make it great.  Tomorrow will not be a great day.

Tomorrow will be the worst of days.  No matter how positive I try to be, tomorrow will be a heart-crushing, tear-filled day.  Tomorrow will undoubtedly be the worst day of the year because tomorrow our school family says goodbye to one of our own.  In a small school, in a small community, everyone is intertwined, close, connected.  Tomorrow we say goodbye to a beautiful, sweet eleven year old girl who died last week.  Taylor was kind, friendly, and caring.  When I go in tomorrow I know that at some point I will leave my class and go pay my respects to Taylor’s family.  There isn’t anyone in our school who doesn’t feel the loss, and yet our loss is insignificant compared to the loss her family is suffering.

So how do I face a day knowing it will be awful?  My goal is to make it as good as it can be.  To be a support for kids, families, and anyone else I can help.  What helps me is knowing the incredible, supportive people I work with will be there.  It helps me because I know I will not be alone in either grieving or in trying to support others.

In the end there is nothing we can do to make tomorrow a great day.  There is nothing we can do for Taylor’s family that will make tomorrow any less devastating.  So we will go in, support them and one another in anyway that is available to us.  We will face the worst day knowing it cannot possibly be even a bad day.  We will do it together, the best we can.