Today, hubby Bill and I presented a Zoom talk regarding Post traumatic growth (and gains) to a class called Learning to Lead at Adelphi University in Garden City, New York. We've done a couple of in-person talks in the last few years, but last year and this year by Zoom. Last year at this time my book, The Focused Fight, was still in the writing stages. It was great to highlight some of the passages and the ideas from the book on the power of connection/community that resonated well with the college freshmen in the class.
What we have learned over the last 25 years, is that when anyone is in a crisis, (2) things are needed:
Bill and I showed a slide deck of several family photos through the years (the good, bad and ugly); plus conveyed the need for someone to understand the emotions that are overpowering to an individual or family going through a traumatic event. We all can benefit when someone listens hard to how we are feeling, and then lead a life being non-judgmental. It's a win-win that way.
In addition to the empathy and wholeheartedness of telling our story, we discussed practical tips to help people during challenging times: mowing the yard, baking cookies or brownies, walking a dog, or buying a pizza on a Friday night. Easy small things that are not hard, but oh so welcome to the recipient. One big item discussed was the National Bone Marrow Program, now called: BeTheMatch Registry. Hosting a drive at the University or seeking out a cheek swab event to save a life would be awesome. The sky's the limit on how people can help people, even college freshmen. They are our future leaders.
A huge shout of THANK YOU to Professors Mary Jean McCarthy and Lisa Minnicozzi for their insight and impact they provide their students every single day, and giving us the opportunity to speak with their outstanding students hailing from all over the USA.