When Tragedy Strikes, How Will I Handle It?

When tragedy happens, I fear for the world my daughter will be coming into. Today there was a stabbing at a Pittsburgh area high school where a 16 year old boy decided to go on a stabbing spree, injuring 20 people. Thankfully, everyone is expected to survive, but the dangers and evils in this world instill an uncertainty in me.

What could drive a 16 year old to do something so awful? So harmful? How will I explain these situations to my daughter? Situations that involve a school incident terrify me, because it makes it painfully obvious that I won’t always be able to protect my child. I can’t control what other people do. I can’t stand in front of her 24 hours a day and shield her from what’s coming. I just have to trust and pray that my daughter is safe when I can’t be there. Letting go of that will be brutally challenging at times.

What if it happened at my daughter’s school? What if my daughter was involved? How could I get to her in this situation?

The thoughts can be paralyzing. Reading this article on CNN.com about the incident, it grieves me for the parents that were told not to come to the school and to wait until they heard. Sitting, helplessly waiting, would be unbearably painful.

So, I pray. I pray for strength and wisdom for how to explain tragedy to my daughter if and when it happens. I pray for my daughter’s safety, because I won’t always be able to be there. I pray that when my daughter faces tragedy, she will find comfort in God. And right now, I pray for all those affected by this devastating situation in Pittsburgh.

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2 thoughts on “When Tragedy Strikes, How Will I Handle It?

  1. adequatedad says:

    You are exactly right. Knowing that one day our kids will be old enough to be out from under our wing of protection as parents is terrifying, and to see things like this happen in a school, where it is supposed to be a safe and nurturing environment is just the hardest blow we can take, and every parent knows it. The problem is, there is very little that you and I as parents can actually DO about it. We need to press our schools for answers. While I don’t want to see the institutions of learning turned into prisons or fortresses, having them make sure that their internal security measures and procedures are up to speed, or that there is employment and training opportunities for School Resource Officers can be a first step. There are people that resist such measures for ‘budget reasons’ or believe it or not the mentality that ‘it can’t happen here’ still exists, so very little is done in the name of security. The world that we grew up in where this sort of thing didn’t happen is gone, sadly, and it enrages me as a parent when I see schools ignore this fact and take no steps to make sure that our kids are safe.
    As for our children and handling a crisis, the best we can do is make sure we teach them well, and do what we can to make them strong, through faith, wisdom, whatever it takes.

    • jcw0623 says:

      I completely agree with your sentiment. It’s funny how what you care about and advocate for changes so much once you know you are going to be a father. School safety wasn’t much more than a fleeting thought a year ago, but now it’s on my mind in a big way, wanting to make sure my little angel is protected. I agree fully that it’s imperative to create a safe, secure and nurturing environment in our school systems. Something needs to change, and you better believe I will be pressing my child’s schools for answers when it comes to that time. Thanks for your comment!

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