Wednesday, March 7, 2018

IWSG: March & Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School

Well, I'm sure I'm not the only one who's scratching their head, wondering how we're already into the third month of this year. *sigh* Anyway, since we are seven days into March, I have a couple of topics to cover.

First up, before I discuss my insecurities for this month's IWSG, I want to remind everyone that we wouldn't be here without our creator, Alex J. Cavanaugh. And special thanks to this month's co-hosts, Mary Aalgaard, Bish Denham, Jennifer Hawes, Diane Burton, and Gwen Gardner!

To learn more about the IWSG program and how it can help your insecurities, visit the website here.

IWSG March

Monthly question:  "How do you celebrate when you achieve a writing goal/ finish a story?"

When I finish a writing goal or a novel, I honestly feel a huge sense of relief. Accomplishing that in itself gives me a huge sense of pride. Then, of course, two seconds later, I remember the entire editing process and the goal-setting process starts all over again. Perhaps that's what I'm doing wrong? Am I not celebrating enough? I'm sure after I visit a few blogs today, I'll have some great ideas for celebrating my writing goals.



As many of you already know by now, the South Florida community was rocked in sheer devastation from the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Words cannot express how heartbreaking this has been.

On the day it happened, Valentine's Day of all days, my husband called me and asked if I had heard. I hadn't so I immediately called my neighbor who works at Douglas to see if he was okay. He was fine and we are thankful. Miraculously, he had left the area when the shooting started. It just so happened the building where the shooting took place is where he works. He was lucky, but as you know others weren't. The school happens to around the corner from where my son pracices soccer. Half of his team has family members who are students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and those kids attend West Glades middle school which is right next door. What many of you don't know are the small details about that day. The fact that one student saved one kid and went back to save another and died. Another fourteen-year-old was shot multiple times that they ended up using the child's clothing in order to identify the victim. I don't want to mention their names because it's too real and it hurts. The thought of a parent having to relive their kid's death for a lifetime on the internet is sickening to me. The survivors, the ones who were shot and thankfully lived, will be dealing with a lifetime of recovery and loss, no doubt. Our community too, I suspect, will have that sense of loss for the rest of our days.

To give you a glimpse of the aftereffects, our community (and others) are dealing with copy-cat attempts and threats--which is insane, to say the least. Some would say the Broward Sherriff's office has upped security measures--others would say it's a joke. I have my opinion, but it doesn't make the deaths of those seventeen students and teachers go away.  After this happened, I realized (once again) that no one is safe anymore. As a personal precautionary measure, I reviewed the safety measures with my kids before they went to school the following day. I asked them where they are supposed to hide if a shooter is live on their campus. I asked them when was the last time they had a Code Red drill, wanting to know if the school was prepared. Then I realized, all the preparation in the world, can't prepare a young one for a person(s) intending to kill. Today, I dropped my son off at school and they have new security measures, which is good I guess. One measure they implemented, was the onsite campus security officer must carry an assault rifle, which was so unfathomable it's mindboggling.

This week, we witnessed our state take some initiatives to change things. First the Senate and now we're waiting on the House.  I don't know what the answer is to all these shootings: fewer guns, better response from goverment agencies, more mental health support, fewer video games, better parenting? Who knows? All I know is those poor families who lost their loved ones are undoubtedly still in shock--as we all are. But life goes on, right? Yes, it does but the empty feeling we have will be with us forever. 

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School - How to help.

When this happened, I donated to the victim's fund right away and then again a week later. Something tells me I will be donating to these families for some time because I just can't imagine their state of minds. Or worse if their horror became mine. If you can help, please do. Here's the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Go Fund Me page. Any little bit helps.

That's all I have. I'm off to see other IWSGers. What are your insecurities this month?
How do you celebrate when you finish your novel?  

Mina B.


Gwen Gardner said...

This is a tough post, Mina. It's so sad that we're living in a dystopian world. I can't imagine raising a child right now. Change is needed. One idea I've read is to befriend everyone and make sure no one is excluded. It's a start.

I also feel accomplished when I finish a project, but like you said, then the real work starts ;)

cleemckenzie said...

What your community suffered is felt by all of us. How tragic for the US.

Here's to feeling more and more accomplished with each completed project.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm sorry. Hard when it hits that close to home. Schools need more protection, which is sad but true.

J.L. Campbell said...

Hi, Mina,
The next task on the horizon can keep up from a wholesale celebration. I can only imagine how terrible is to have to be quizzing your kids on what to do in case of a shooting. :(

Diane Burton said...

I worry about my grandkids (ages 8 & 10) as they go to school each day. Their school has had safety measures in place for a couple of years. What is our world coming to? When will this senselessness come to an end? The teens protesting and demanding change will be voters shortly. I hope that fact will shake up our do-nothing politicians. Those teens may succeed where adults can't. That must have been so scary for you and your children. My heart hurts for the families.

Our celebrating small achievements takes a back seat to what's happening around us.

Heather R. Holden said...

So sorry your community has had to suffer a tragedy like this. If only this kind of devastation could stop being a reality in our world... :(