Friday, April 19, 2013

Toward World Restoration

I need to work on world restoration, on how to reformulate the world after terror has unexpectedly entered.  Restoration is of vital concern to my community. One of my former students and his wife were gravely 
injured and will be changed forever.  My neighbors and clients are in varying states of dislocation.

Much of my time is lived within 2 blocks of the bombs. The main advice I have been able to offer is for people to regain community through discussion. Share what you are ready to share.  I remind myself and others to get the best sleep we can. Sleep, when possible, is the ordinary way we knit life back together.  

Avoid alcohol. 
Alcohol may make it easier to fall asleep but harder to remain asleep. 

My colleagues, Ramon Greenberg and Chester Pearlman, demonstrated that REM sleep aids in self-restoration and in the toleration of anomaly and trauma. Most REM happens in the second half of the evening's sleep. REM sleep helps develop our toleration for the things that we do not already have the competence to handle.

While I type, the next act in the Boston tragedy is underway.

I have been reminding myself to be grateful that most of us weren't psychologically prepared. I would rather be in a state of shock and dislocation than hardened to expect Monday’s events. I am glad that most of us are only prepared to live in a world where terror is an anomaly. We expect to live in a civil place.  Not the world that Monday revealed.

Every world is someone's world.

I want the world around me to be where I notice that the cherry blossoms have just arrived. 


A Boston Globe transcript of an online chat on dealing with the personal aftermath of the bombing can be found here:  Dealing with Grief and Trauma

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