Marjorie JamesI am writing this shortly after the bombing at the Boston Marathon, and I am reeling to think that two young men who have lived in our country for so long can harbor the kind of hatred that would result in the killing of people running in a race, just for fun. I felt the same way at 9-11; people just went to work and never came home.

I was amazed at the number of people who joined the first responders, running through the chaos rather than away from it, seeking to do what they could to help those who were wounded. I saw one man in running shorts and shoes with a cowboy hat on his head. He had torn off his shirt to use as a tourniquet on a fellow runner’s bleeding leg and ran alongside the wheelchair until he and the medics reached the ambulance.

The first Red Sox home game after the bombing was spectacular. Many of the fans said they went specifically to show they were not going to “let them win.” I got chills as I listened to Neil Diamond and the full stadium sing “Sweet Caroline”, yelling “good times never seemed SO GOOD, SO GOOD, SO GOOD!!” We are a resilient and resolute people! True healing will take some time, but the road to healing is being paved.

I met “Tess” shortly after her divorce five years ago; her husband had an affair (again, he revealed) and this time decided to marry his “sweetheart.” Tess was devastated; she had been a stay-at-home wife and mother during their marriage, and now her whole life was topsy-turvy. She was desperately looking for a job “I can actually do” and adjusting to life as a single parent. Many prayers and hugs kept her afloat, she said, as she figured out how to cope with this massive, unwanted change in her life.

Recently, a group of us ladies had brunch together. As we were eating, Tess quietly said that she has “finally uncovered who I am.” She smiled broadly as she said it. It took her almost five years to be able to say that, but she made it; she bounced back. She, like so many of us, is resilient and resolute, determined to “rise again.”

During the process of divorce, at least one person is unwillingly changing his/her life. At that point, despair and deep sorrow can be overwhelming. Part of what Collaborative law teams do, many times through family coaches, is start the healing process, helping people tap into the resilience and resolve they may not even realize they have. At a ceremony honoring Sean Collier, the MIT campus police officer killed by the Tsarnaev brothers, Vice President Joe Biden said it well. “We have suffered, we are grieving, but we are not bending.”

Copyright 2013. Marjorie E. James. All rights reserved.

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