I like to think most people are decent people. In the event of a tragedy, I like to think that almost everyone, even those who ordinarily experience a deficit in decency, will step up to their better selves and lend a hand of compassion to those who suffer. I have often been told that I see the world, and humanity, through rose-colored glasses. This weekend has proven that statement true.
When I see looters or violent mobs on the news, I think to myself, “Well, they are underprivileged people who have never experienced the dignity of self-reliance, the fulfillment of self-mastery or unselfish dedicated love for anyone other than themselves. Otherwise, how could they so horribly victimize those who have done nothing to them?” Their behavior only serves to taint their cause and bring focus on the negative aspects of their movement. Victimizing others out of tantrum, demonstration or any other reason is pure barbarism.
The florist brought over flowers for a service this weekend, and as she lingered, we took a moment to chat. She mentioned that when she was first married, she miscarried a child just two weeks shy of full term. How utterly heartbreaking. I can’t imagine the heartache she suffered. As we were discussing her experience, she mentioned that during her bereavement, she would receive prank phone calls related to the miscarriage. In detail, she related that as she answered the phone, she would be met with a moment of silence before music would begin to play, the song: Rock-A-Bye-Baby.
She endured this torture for six months as the police and phone company tried to trace the phone calls, without success. I cannot imagine the anguish that she suffered, the intensity of grief that continued to build up within her heart and soul at the cruelty of another human being’s actions toward her, and the fear she experienced each time her phone rang. I am surprised that she even has a phone, now that they are cellular. Fortunately, in today’s world, we have caller id and inferior little trolls who would treat a bereft mother so abusively would be easily identified.
Losing a loved one is a serious event, which imposes serious psychological vulnerabilities upon the survivor. In most cases, these vulnerabilities are temporary, however, persons who would exploit such a devastating event are seriously deficient and should be separated from society. Those who would exploit the bereft would also exploit the elderly and the innocent. Such individuals are dangerous and should be exposed. One would be well advised to remove such individuals from their circle of friends before tragedy strikes their lives.
The exploitation of such tragedy damages the survivor’s ability to recover. Their inability allows their vulnerabilities to proliferate and, before too long, professional assistance becomes necessary. Without professional assistance, the survivor will suffer complicated and prolonged grief scenarios. The effects of these scenarios will infiltrate all aspects of the survivor’s life. Other relationships will suffer, as will work performance and health. If not addressed, such stress upon the human mind and body may lead to serious mental and physical illnesses or even death.
It has been 30 years since my florist friend lost her baby. This weekend, I stood at my front door witnessing the pain and anguish she still suffers at the actions of a barbaric coward who hid behind a phone wire to terrorize a young mother, bereft over the death of her child. The loss of a child is a wound that never heals. The sadistic terror inflicted upon her is inconceivable and unpardonable.
Tracy Renee Lee is managing funeral director for Queen City Funeral Home in Queen City, Texas. She is an author, syndicated columnist and Certified Grief Counselor. She writes books, weekly bereavement articles, and grief briefs related to understanding and coping with grief. She is the American Funeral Director of the Year runner-up and recipient of the BBB’s Integrity Award. She delivers powerful messages and motivates audiences toward positive recovery. It is her life’s work to comfort the bereaved and help them live on. For additional encouragement and to read other articles or watch video “Grief Briefs,” visit www.MourningCoffee.com.