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How do we respond to a week such as this?

How do we respond to a week such as this? A week when we, people who affirm the best in the human spirit, have witnessed the mayhem caused by the worst? The reality is, there is no one right way.

For those of us who have experienced trauma in our own past, it may be most important to find a way to release the sense of relived terror we may be feeling and nourish our spirits.

For those of us who have been trained to push aside all hard emotions, we may need to create a space where we can hold our feelings.

For those of us who do best when we see facts, we may need to unpack, in moderate amounts, the analyses that are now coming which show the extent of the collusion which made the events of this week possible will bring healing truth.

For those of us who work to change the conditions that perpetuate such systematic hatred, we may need to allow our anger to flow into constructive action.

Yet whatever we do, may we not do it in isolation, may we remember that community and companionship matter in these moments. May we also remember that the approaches of others are their approaches and that, actually, over time, we may also learn from them. Those of us who like facts may need to feel. Those of us who go to feelings may be helped by facts. Those of us who work to change systems have information that will be valuable when the first shock of this wears off. And those of us who have experienced trauma have an understanding that is helpful and accurate in these times, that can help others understand who have never before had to experience that sense of raw terror and powerlessness.

So fumbling out from this shocking week together will remind us why we need one another.

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