The Dr is in - Rx: Fighting helplessness
What to do when I feel helpless?
Our heartfelt encouragement to @flash during this difficult time.
Recent events in Turkey and Syria have impacted many of us here on RP.me and others around the world. Whether or not you have friends, family, or associates directly involved in the deadly earthquakes that have taken the lives of over 5,000 people, as of this writing, you may still feel the impact of the devastation it has caused.
Along with the sense of despair, grief, loss and horror, as we watch the news unfold with even grimmer news of the terrible toll, there is an overwhelming sense of helplessness that comes with such tragedies. There are always the questions of Why? How? What can be done? Along with these questions comes the inevitable query of: What can I do about it?
Some people will react with callous disregard; perhaps hug their loved ones a bit tighter but dismiss such events because they believe it doesn’t impact them. Fair enough. While I would argue that every person’s death diminishes us as a whole, that is a lecture for another day. Suffice it to say, this entry is for those who are watching with tear-filled eyes at the awesome yet formidable power of nature in the extreme and sit helpless by to watch and yearn for the super powers many of us here claim by our characters to have – yet cannot enact to go and help right crumbled buildings, or restore all to rights, as they once were.
It is a sad day, when we face the reality that control of life is an illusion. It strips away our comfort zones and forces us to come to the mirror of our own mortality. While uncomfortable and disturbing as this is – it is vital for us to remember, our time here is limited and unless we are given additional information – none of us know when our end time comes.
It should not be easy to sit idly by when we have friends or know of those who are now experiencing real pain and fear from experiencing such loss on a personal level. We should want to help, we should yearn to restore that illusion of control again, to make things as they once were before nature came along and crushed our beliefs.
What can be done? Give of yourself. It may sound too simple for such an overwhelming event but trust me, it will help.
If you cannot donate funds to trust-worthy sites that have been vetted to assure the donors that their monies are going directly to the victims of such tragedies, there is still a lot you can do to help. Money helps, it takes a huge amount of money to run rescue teams and equipment to such countries, towns, and cities. Not to mention to keep crews and emergency personnel on site to keep performing search and rescue to find survivors, not to mention personnel to help extract and identify those who were not fortunate enough to make it out alive.
Donate clothing, food, blankets, to your local shelters or Red Cross and United Way facilities now. Whenever a natural disaster such as the earthquakes hits, these resources are some of the first that are tapped to draw needed items and provide excess in whatever capacity they can provide. Often they are immediately drained of all of their materials and left barren to provide anymore for the daily demands with which they are faced.
Give blood. As with material resources; blood banks and hospitals are also among the first to be hit with demands as globally, first-responders race to the scene and must ask their home countries for what stores are available to be donated. Blood is a vital commodity and when such devastation is so widespread, often the local resources for such have been wiped out in a matter of minutes if not seconds by having been involved in the disaster themselves.
Talk to others and find out what they can provide. Make sure that people are aware of the disaster and ask that they donate as well. Offer to take their items, along with yours, to the local shelters or hospitals, to make sure all donations are received.
Think about the situation in a personal way – what if this was your family? What would you want others to think or do to help you? Respond in kind.
Listen. If you know someone who has been impacted by this tragedy – if you cannot offer more, offer your ears and eyes (in the case of RP.me/reading text) – to listen and truly hear. Be there for those who are dealing with this tragic situation in a personal, intimate way and simply listen. Chances are they’re feeling overwhelmed and more helpless than yourself.
Donate hugs and kindness. To everyone you know and care about – whether it be in writing or in person, be gentle with others, give kindness and consideration. Know that others may be hiding a lot of hurt and come here for escape – not questions. If someone chooses to bring it up, let them, listen to them – but don’t hound them about it – they may not be at a place where they can talk about it now and need the escape of roleplay just to get them through the moment.
Pray. To whatever God or deity in which you believe. The power of prayer can work miracles and right now the people of Turkey, Syria and all other impacted areas need all the prayers we, as a group, can send.
Take some action – even if you can’t donate money – donate a moment’s time to do one thing on the above list. It will help you to feel more powerful and less helpless by acting on it. Look at the list above, it is not by any means the only things you can do – it’s just a guideline to help you get started. No matter what you do – do something.
We are humanity, all of us. Make it count*.
*I wanted to go on about how yes, this is roleplay and we come here to forget about our real selves and to take on persona's that allow us to step out of those lives and into ones that are within our control, etc. About how we like to put on a mantle that we can trust and how we like, through our writing and fiction, to control the amount of horror, devastation, and drama that is created. How when something like this happens it minimizes any and everything here to the point it all seems so trivial and small, how little control we really do have– but then – I thought to myself – you know that already – right?