If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, it’s just possible you haven’t grasped the situation. ~ Jean Kerr
Meet Jean Kerr, my new friend. Jean died in 2003 at the age of 80, yet I’m sure we’re friends for at least three reasons. Jean Kerr was born in my hometown Scranton, Pennsylvania, which I wrote about at my previous blog, Hometown Sweet Hometown. She’s Irish-American (Oh, yes, our family is already planning for our ginormous St. Patrick’s Day celebration in 2015.) And she was long married (53 years at the time of her husband’s death in 1996) and mothered 6 children.
I share this quote, not because it is her funniest or most inspiring per se. I share it because it cautions me to make sure I’m grasping the full truth of important situations. While the habit of calm is a good and important one, it can also be an emotional or intellectual numbing in disguise.
An example of this is when my sister called to tell me about the 9/11*, 2001 attacks. I literally stayed so calm trying to calm her that I didn’t begin to grasp the enormity, or shed a tear, for at least an hour. Shock and calm habit collide. Much of my energy goes toward keeping a cool head in times of chaos, confusion, and suffering among the people I love and the world as a whole. As the grown-up in the room, it is my job to stay calm, yet not to the point of denial, detachment, indifference, or inaction.
Are you calm in the face of difficulties? Do you depend on others to stay calm? Have you ever not grasped the enormity of a situation?
*Links to 9/11 Memorial. Teach + Learn: Information, context and resources exploring the attacks of 9/11
Carry on, friends ❤ ~~~~~~~~ Angie Mc