I wish I could make school safe for all children and teachers…

The United States is home to so many wonderful things…and also, sadly, school shootings. In the wake of this latest school shooting in Uvalde Texas, I want to address my wish…

I’m listening to Governor Greg Abbott discussing the lack of mental health services in the area, gun laws that are inadequate on their own, and various strategies when an event like this happens. Asking why, what, how can’t hurt, but how can we prevent future shooters?

My thoughts are all over the place…warning signs as they look back NOW include: anger, isolation, truancy, animal abuse, social media statements. Did they see any of this prior to the event? Sounds like his grandfather noticed some, but he didn’t recognize them for what they were. Reporters are saying that he was labeled a troubled kid, a bully. Children like this, adolescents especially, are the ones who need our kindness, attention, support the most.

I keep coming back to the early years…if a child has a secure predictable start, with as few adverse childhood experiences(ACES)as possible, they are more resilient in the future. What that means is they can suffer loss, failure, or rejection and have the skills and supportive environment to weather the storm. They are more capable of seeing the perspective of another, seeing what they can learn from a situation, and moving through it to live and learn another day.

And we need to think about the families of children as well. Resiliency, or lack thereof, can be a pattern passed down from each generation. It’s up to all of us to come together with compassion, empathy, and kindness to grow a more resilient tomorrow, and hopefully school shootings will eventually be part of the past…

Please know that one smile, one compliment, one kind gesture can make a difference in the life of another. You could be preventing a tragedy just by being kind…


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