It's Still Happening, and Even Worse
Why are we not doing something about this? Has our virtual world become so integrated with our actual world that we don't feel the emotions that I'm feeling when I hear yet another story of some very unhappy and broke children in America?
Since my last post of February 28th about 9 ways how a teen can be a positive influence in their world, following the Florida high school tragedy, I've learned about 7 new cases of tragic incidents that have happened to schools in our country.
- Santa Fe, Texas high school shooting
- Noblesville, Indiana middle school shooting
- Former student from Torrey Pines High School in Del Mar (an affluent school district in Southern California) threat to bring in weapons to his h.s. alma mater
- and in another very affluent district in Northern California:
- 1 5th grader suicide
- 1 9th grader possible suicide (still under investigation)
- 1 9th grader threat to carry out plans for a Columbine 2.0
- 1 2nd grader threat to bring in a gun
And these are just stories that I happened to hear about either through news feed or radio. And the last one from a relative whom I happened to call this week. Her children live and go to that school district.
AND… these incidents ALL happened in just one month, the month of MAY. Which ironically, happens to be Mental Health Awareness month, and has been since 1949 in this country.
Now you may see this as just a big coincidence, but not me. Since I've been a Create Balance Life Coach, and have brought in the integrative wellness piece into our practice, I've applied everything I've learned and more into my own life. Since then, I've had such clarity in everything that I do and that the universe brings to us, it actually frightens me a little sometimes.
Our children are crying out for help. They are trying to get our attention to really, truly listen to them. We've become such a zombie like society with a pocket size TV glued to our eyes almost 24x7, we've been cultivating a social environment that is not natural for us humans.
Did you know that now is the first time ever where babies are learning how to use a smart device before they learn how to walk?
Don't get me wrong, I'm not bashing technology here. I think technology has brought us truly amazing better ways to do certain things. For example, I am now relying on my smartphone to remind me of my appointments, when to pick up my kids, how to make a quick healthy dinner using the only ingredients I have in my fridge by searching up a recipe in 2 seconds. This has saved me tons of time and stress so that I can focus on more meaningful things, like pursuing my vision for my business, or spending quality time with my family.
How many of you take an 'electronic-free' timeout throughout your day? Or maybe an 'electronic-free' Sunday afternoon where the entire family participates and you all go do something fun like take a hike at the beach? Or how about an 'electronic-free' night every night so that you can get good sleep? My family has a 10pm-6am no phone zone M-F and a 11pm-7am no phone zone on weekends.
Where do you think all of this easy, 24x7 access to anything and everything will lead to for us as a human race? Did you know that there have been numerous studies done on brain waves that concluded that the same brain function goes on in a depressed person as a person who watches TV for a certain period of time? What do you think is happening to our brains with a pocket size TV that's with us everywhere we go? I recently saw my daughter getting ready in the morning watching TV on her phone while she was doing her hair in her bathroom. OMG. So what's this about kids/teens/adults being diagnosed with ADHD? Don't we all have ADHD to some extent these days? Who can possibly stay focused for long periods of time when we have so much stimulation (and not necessarily the good kind) ALL THE TIME??
So I'm begging you, thinking of you, and asking you for your help. For the sake of our children and their future as well as ours. Let's stand up strong and smart, and take a call to action. First and foremost, we have to set the boundaries for ourselves, and start feeling human again. It's ok to be angry. It's ok to be sad. It's ok to feel 'less than'. But we have to start feeling again. Our world is not one big reality TV show where we're the spectators, until the tragedy happens to us. To my child. To your child. To our community. We need to start taking preventative measures NOW. One step at a time. But always a step in the right direction.