Thursday, October 14, 2010

Staying Focused and Hopeful...Not Jaded or Cynical

As you all know, tragic news has become part of our routine here as we continue our searching for missing children. We have learned to accept this reality as part of the territory. We must not allow this, however, to make us jaded and cynical. We need to learn to turn these tragedies into something productive, something constructive that will motivate us and keep us moving forward. I believe that is critical to our emotional health and absolutely essential to continuing our work.

I've said many times that it is normal for us to have our down times and low points, especially upon hearing horrible news about a child being recovered under terrible circumstances. We are often there from the beginning and even while we know in the back of our collective mind that the outcome can be a bad one, we hold out hope until the end that the child will be found alive. When that is not the case, it is a second tragedy when hope is lost along with the child. It makes it difficult to hope the next time, harder to believe that the next one will make it. Yet, we must.

We struggle with this over and over, but we must continue to hope while we brace ourselves for the worst. Against the outcry of those who would sway us, we must press on. The next child, and there will always be one, is going to need us focused and ready. If we allow our judgment to become clouded with doubt, we are going to miss something. We must stay sharp and attentive to every detail, covering all bases as we move forward. Our mission is to stay focused on each child as we go, starting fresh and not carrying the emotional baggage of all of the cases before. We must bring the thoughts of those children along with us, to remind us of why we are here and motivate us to keep going.

The bottom line is that we all struggle with what we have to deal with on a regular basis. Most of us will not need clinical help and many of us have learned to adapt to our situations and become more resilient out of necessity. However, we can all benefit from learning how to cope with tragedy in new ways.

Some of us may need additional help and that is to be expected when you consider the thousands of volunteers that are out there searching for missing children. If you or a colleague is struggling to cope with the tragic loss of a missing child, you are not alone. If you feel it is too overwhelming for you and you need help, please call a local psychologist or therapist and get the help you need. Talk to a professional, ask a friend to go with you if you do not want to go alone. I have placed some information on the RESOURCES page that may help you and there are many other resources available out there. Depression is a serious condition and you do not need to try to handle it alone.

No comments:

My Blog List