Winter trees with snow, credit Kirsten Akens 2015

Today's prompt from Rachel Cole's Savor project is focused on resilience:

And still I rise ...

Truth is, I'm having a hard time with this one. It's too close to home. (And it's why my post is a few days behind. I was off the grid for Thanksgiving, and then when I returned, life shifted.)

I live in Colorado Springs. For those of you who are here with me, you know what happened Friday.

For those of you not here in the Springs, many of you — if not all of you — have probably heard some bit of the shooting spree that occurred near and in our local Planned Parenthood facility. A man killed three people. Many others were injured.

Living through the experience, knowing I somewhat regularly shop at the grocery store that shares the parking lot with Planned Parenthood; knowing that many of my friends also eat and bank and access health care services at this strip mall; and not knowing who might be there in danger or on lock-down in one of the businesses, I was scared.






I was not feeling resilient.

I wanted to crawl into bed, under the covers, with my phone, and obsessively scroll through Twitter posts.

I also wanted to toss my phone out the window, and then crawl into bed, under the covers, and ignore everyone and everything.

I wanted to go back off the grid and pretend this was not happening again. (About a month ago, we had another shooting spree just four blocks from my home. The people who died? One of them could have easily been me had I made a different choice that morning.)

What did I do during those painful moments? I did spend some time in bed. And I spent too much time on Twitter. I read Alice Hoffman. And I watched two documentaries, two episodes of The Voice and one episode of Dancing With the Stars — How much do I love Bindi?!

Hello avoidance.

Two days have passed now. Details surrounding the shooting continue to top the news. Names of those who were killed have been released. Grieving is happening all over this city. Politics are getting ugly.

As for me, I'm washing T-shirts and socks, and meeting friends for coffee, and making tacos for dinner. I'm getting back to work. I'm (mostly) staying off of Twitter.

All of this could also be called avoidance, but I think it's the thing called resilience.

How to make change, or even hope that change can be made, isn't on my radar yet.

It will come, in time. But today, and tomorrow, and for however long my heart needs, I will simply rise. Take one step forward. And then another. Offer kindness where I can. First to myself, and then to those around me.

And I will let that be enough.