I am Struggling



I am struggling.

I am struggling to make sense of the conflicting emotions bouncing around in my head.

It is rare for me to blog twice in one week, let alone two days in a row, and yet…

Like others, writing helps me to crystallize my thoughts and emotions. Like others, I can’t stop thinking of a life cut short by cancer.  Like others, I never met this remarkable young boy we all call “Superman Sam”.  Like others, I have never even met his parents.

But I “know” them. Through Twitter and the online world, they have encouraged all of us to share their journey. They have taught us and demonstrated a grace & beauty few can express in times of joy, let alone in a time of anguish and heartbreak. 

I am struggling.

I am struggling to make sense of the appreciation I feel at a time when I should “only” feel grief and offer some kind of support. (Phyllis also (yes, she’s that amazing) created BlogElul, an online spiritual journey that leads us to the Jewish holy days, a traditional time of reflection and introspection. I embraced this opportunity to write and reflect.)

I am struggling to make sense of the deep connection I feel to people I do not know, but who are so significantly important in the lives of many that I do know.  Thank you, God, for k’lal yisrael (community of Israel) that allows us to all be connected.

I am struggling to focus. How could I possibly work while a beautiful child is being mourned?

I am struggling as I read each and every article and blog upon blog written about Sam, his amazing parents & siblings, their public and painful journey and the powerful community that supports them; and yet I can not turn away.  I must read.  I must feel.  I must grieve.

I am struggling because in the world of the work that I do, this happens; too often.  Parents bury their children. It should never be. But children are born with medical conditions and disabilities that live lives which are too short, like Sam’s.  Their stories may not be as public, but their journeys are no less significant.

In Jewish tradition we say zichro livracha, may his/her memory be a blessing. May Sam’s legacy be rich and deep.  May his parents find comfort in this time of their sorrow.  May we all be better for having shared in Sam’s journey. 

Phyllis has taught us that social media can be a powerful tool. That we can all harness it in meaningful and significant ways.  I’m listening and hineini, I am here.

Let’s do as Phyllis has taught and use the power of social media to support those children whose story hasn’t yet been told.  Their stories matter.  No more struggling.
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