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Recent weeks have left many of us reeling. The world is in tatters as we watch events unfold. Countries are at war; the climate continues to respond with extreme events, and no one is safe from gun violence. Or at least not anyone in the United States.  

Watching the local or national news can leave anyone in tears. 

Every day we see horrifying events. Daily we learn of deaths that mean that someone, somewhere has lost a parent, partner, sibling, or child. Receiving this information – whether close to home or across the planet – is a stark check for each of us. 

People are sharing with me the impact of all these situations. Highly sensitive, empathic, or simply deeply touched, the trauma of it all is overwhelming. If you’ve had your own experience of trauma, then the intensity of it can feel magnified even more. It is okay, if in this time in our world, you feel challenged to find or hold on to hope. 

It is okay to be struggling because there seems to be no solid ground on which to stand. 

Yet, all around us amid all this trauma, are people who have a desire to live the questions. To live as deeply and richly and thoroughly as possible. To look for and hold onto hope. 

Cole Arthur Riley, author of Black Liturgies writes: 

 

“If your hope is waning, find those who can sustain it. And when the 

time comes, you will carry someone else’s hope for them. 

 

No individual can resist despair 

on their own. We steady each other. 

We can’t afford despair.” 

 

 

Mourning our losses, whether individual or global, is not something we are meant to do alone. As people, we are built for belonging. Grief and loss call us to draw near one another – to step closer, to support, encourage, witness, listen, name, hold gently. 

 

So, who steadies you when you despair over the world? Who are you steadying? 

 

We steady one another when we talk about how hard things are. When we remind one another that we have done hard things before. When we sit in silence with someone who is hurting. When we hear the names of those who have died, we witness despair and hold it tenderly by being a witness. 

 

In this difficult time, reach out to those you love and trust. Speak of what’s hard and invite others to speak of what’s hard too. We can steady one another even when we don’t know what else to do. We can be there for one another in the present moment because, like Riley says, we can’t afford despair.

Start the conversation here in the comments. We can get through this together.

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