I recently learned that steel melts at 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit. But steel actually begins to soften at “only” 800 degrees.
The quality of steel doesn’t fit neatly into a dichotomy of good steel versus bad steel: good vs bad. Instead, there’s a continuum that ranges from solid to liquid – from strong to weak. Actually, most things in life fall within a continuum. Behaviors can fall in a continuum that ranges from good to bad and everything in between. Crisis situations can range from acute crisis to resolution and everything in between. And in our journey back from trauma and horror, our physical and emotional responses can fall in a continuum that ranges from injury to recovery. And everything in between.
And the truth is that most of us, haven’t completely recovered from Oct 27. We are still somewhere within that continuum from Injury to Recovery.
Our wounds are still fresh. Many of us still struggle with anxiety, depression, irritability, and trouble sleeping at night. And even some of us who thought we were doing pretty ok last week aren’t doing as well this week. As strong as we are – as individuals and as a community – we can only take so much before we reach our breaking point.
My plea to you is this: don’t put off taking care of yourselves until you reach that breaking point. If you are struggling emotionally – if you’re having more symptoms of anxiety or depression – now is the time to get help. What kind of help? Most importantly, do the things that give you strength and contentment. For example:
- Spend time with family and friends
- Exercise can help with your physical and emotional wellbeing
- Talk to people close to you about how you’re feeling
- Attend a support group.
- Consider professional counseling, through JFCS, the CFV, or a local therapist who is trained in treating trauma survivors
- If talk therapy isn’t for you, consider Alternative Healing modalities like acupuncture, massage, yoga, or meditation
- And consider prayer
The bottom line? Don’t wait for your distress to turn into a crisis. We all need help from time to time, and nobody knows what you need more than you do. So please take care of you. For your sake and for the sake of those who care about you.