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Coping With Tragedy


Tuesday September 11 started out like any other day. I dropped my kids at school then went off to work. I settled for another day on the job, listening to to NPR on the radio. Then the news, the shock, the fear the disbelief finally the tears. Hijacked airliners crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York while another took out a part of the Pentagon in Washington.

In the 2 days since this horrific event I have had a hard time sleeping and have felt "on the edge". I am under stress - the same type of stress that I know many of you all are. Unfortunately this stress can be harmful to our health. While there is no way to erase the events of the last few days there are ways to cope with it. Those who lived through World War II can understand this. They had 6 years of stress, anxiety and uncertainty yet they coped and coped well. They emerged strong and triumphant from the depths of despair. As they coped so will we.

  • Volunteer
    If you are under the age of 65 donate blood, it will be needed. If you are over 65 you can still find other ways to help. Getting up and moving often relieves stress. If you are thinking of others you will have little time to think about yourself.
  • Turn Off The TV
    The news coverage has been non-stop since this happened. Sitting and watching the same horrific images over and over can add to stress. Put on some music or work on a favorite hobby. It will give you an outlet for all that pent up anxiety.
  • Cry
    You don't always have to put on a happy face. Crying is a way the body helps to relieve stress an pent up emotion.
  • Share Your Feelings With OthersGo to church, call a friend don't try to cope alone. Everyone is in pain, seeking support does not reveal weakness it maintains humanity. We are a social species and we need others in our lives.

If you would like to share your thoughts, your fears or your observations please visit the Senior Health Forum

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