March 13, 2011 at 2:48 pm #89291
AnonymousInactiveMarch 13, 2011 at 2:48 pmPost count: 14413
Early Friday morning (3/11/11) I got up at my usual time of about 2am, and I tuned into MSNBC and watched as it was happening the post earthquake tsunamis that rocked Japan. Like anyone else I was stunned in my case to the point of feeling “numb.” The consequ-ences of the event however is very personal being that I am a Sansei Third Generation American of Japanese Decent. I have family there that I have never met whoes lives very likely were devestated by the earthquake and tsunamis as well as any ongoing pestu-lence. Since I am from Hawaii it is always hard to see or hear disaster stories from home. I still have not contacted anyone there to find out how they faired. Frankly speaking I am in shock. The question I am left with is not why something happens but how do you cope with it any suggestions? I can sure use some good advice, believe me I am praying like I have never prayed before.REPORT ABUSEMarch 14, 2011 at 11:40 pm #102024
laddybug3MemberMarch 14, 2011 at 11:40 pmPost count: 226
I had trouble with it too. I could not watch any more of it. Even though it was on every channel outside my house.REPORT ABUSEMarch 15, 2011 at 2:19 am #102025
AnonymousInactiveMarch 15, 2011 at 2:19 amPost count: 14413
I was in your position in 2005. I spent the first half of my life in south Louisiana, so watching the Katrina event unfold on TV was shocking and depressing for me on a very personal level. The fact that I was in New York didn’t help matters.
The best advice I can give you for coping with these disasters, especially from a distance, is to find something to do to make you feel like you’re helping. Donate to the Red Cross–doesn’t have to be a large amount of money, just whatever you can afford to give. If praying makes you feel like you’re doing something, then that’s helpful. Ideally, we would all like to be there in person, physically helping victims to recover and rebuild their lives, but that’s not practical. Giving money to help fund the professional responders is often the best course to take.
Even reaching out and expressing concern to people you may know who have relatives there (even if they don’t live near the site of impact) will make you feel better, especially when you see the look of gratitude that someone cared enough about them to ask if their family and friends were okay.
Write a journal of your impressions through the whole sequence from day one and then write in it daily.
It’s very hard not to feel insignificant and helpless in these situations, but if you do what you can to help and accept that that’s all you can do, then you will feel less anxious about it.REPORT ABUSEMarch 15, 2011 at 5:22 am #102026
AnonymousInactiveMarch 15, 2011 at 5:22 amPost count: 14413
Kazuo – I saw your post last night and felt like anything I would suggest would not be enough, today I feel compelled to try and answer your question. All my friends tell me that I always state the obvious…. so here it goes. I think stressful events are more difficult for us ADDers because we are already dealing with life’s issues (a bit more than others). One thing we can do is pray for all of Japan (which I know you are already doing) and for the people all over the world that are searching for their loved ones. Find an organization that is sending help and donate your time. Donating time helps emotionally and it keeps you busy (that is if you have the time). There is always donating money. I know that a lot of people are sending messages through Twitter, Facebook etc… You never know you may find someone in need through the Internet that you can help in some way. The people of Japan need to know that we are thinking of them. Do not watch the news if you can help it, if you have to watch, watch it many hours before you go to sleep. I watched the news the other night and was not able to sleep for hours afterwards, of course I watched the 11 O’clock news. Loss of sleep makes my ADD twice as bad; this may or may not be something that affects you. Kazuo may I ask if you have been able to contact any of your relatives? How are you doing? Sending good thoughts your way!REPORT ABUSEMarch 15, 2011 at 7:39 am #102027
AnonymousInactiveMarch 15, 2011 at 7:39 amPost count: 14413
doing something practical always helps me in a crisis. it gets you out of your own headspace and physically moving, so gives that dangerously paralysing ‘rabbit in the headlight’-mode a solid kick in the pants, it knocks that feeling of powerlessness completely out of the water (while you can’t prevent catastrophe, you can make a difference to the aftermath in many many ways) and it does a fair bit for misplaced guilt (it’s probably only me who feels guilty for things i have no control over, when i didn’t personally do anything wrong or cause them to happen, but maybe it’s an ADD thing as well).
we’re all family to some extent, i probably pass people in the street here- more than 3,000 miles from home, who share the same great great grandfather as me- and those who don’t- well, we’re all made of the same stuff and part of the same system when it comes down to it. and i think that being family- blood or not- is about community, and finding a shared strength, reaching out to help each other up in whatever way we can- and every hand held out makes a difference.
i’d look at what you CAN do, and then do *something*- even if it’s baking cookies to raise cash to give to the red cross, volunteering at a local asian community group making tea for people who are gathering to find comfort from their peers, or perhaps calling up an elderly relative who you haven’t spoken to for far too long, and listening to them talk about how THEY feel (sometimes seniors in society feel even more trapped and vulnerable in situations like this than the rest of us- they’re frequently isolated physically, spend a lot of time alone with a wealth of memories, and perhaps feel a little too proud or reserved to actively seek out support, for worry of burdening busy young-folk or seeming weak and needy). even doing something for a group or cause completely unrelated to this event is a worthy undertaking- a lot of soup kitchens for the homeless or animal rescue charities will be feeling the crunch really badly at the moment, as everyone else’s pennies will have been redirected at once towards japan- and their work with other needy beings still goes on, their plight doesn’t lessen at a time like this.
i think i’d try and take comfort in knowing that time will help you process this event, and add a little perspective- in being sure that things will continue to go on despite great adversity- we’ll mourn, rebuild, and move forward, as we always do… it’s part of the cycle. i’ve never been a big crier or greiver, i don’t know why- maybe it’s a self preservation strategy, maybe i’m a cold hard bitch- who knows. i don’t watch the news stories that flood the media after something like this, and i’m not one to share every video clip on youtube, talk about how dreadful it is, etc, because that just seems a little too voyeuristic, perverted, macabre and masochistic to me (like rubbernecking a carwreck, it just leaves a funny taste in my mouth- i already know all i need too, i don’t need the continuing gory details read out to me in triplicate) but i do subscribe to the idea of being quietly ok with however you feel right now, whenever ‘right now’ is- cos really, it just is how it is, whether there is a reason or not- and nothing is the same forever- you know?REPORT ABUSEMarch 15, 2011 at 12:39 pm #102028
AnonymousInactiveMarch 15, 2011 at 12:39 pmPost count: 14413
The answer is no unfortunately I donot know them personally and there is a bit of a language barrier I can barely read and write in Japanese and speak the language poorly. (I was born and raised in Hawaii) I however do still have family in Hawaii, and in Los Angeles County ans well as Northern California in San Jose. I made this posting to acknollege the fact that I am experiencing shoock to the point of feeling numb. Thanks to everyones support I can actually say I feel numb insted of being unaware of the on going disaster in Japan.
I do however have friends living hear who are Japanese Nationals and I really do not know what to say to them. eventually I will get a hold of my Sister who lives in San Jose to find out fishe was affeected and if our family was affected by the Tsunami. What adds to my anxiety is not being able to get an accurate idea of what parts of Hawaii was affected. The State of Hawaii is mainly inhabited by 6 major islands the most heavily populated is O’ahu where the Capital Honolulu exist.REPORT ABUSEMarch 15, 2011 at 12:50 pm #102029
AnonymousInactiveMarch 15, 2011 at 12:50 pmPost count: 14413
I can not imagine the trauma you survived with Huricane Katrina. God bless you for doing so, I’ll try to use your experience to come to terms with my own experience. Thank-you.
KREPORT ABUSEMarch 15, 2011 at 12:53 pm #102030
AnonymousInactiveMarch 15, 2011 at 12:53 pmPost count: 14413
What would I do without you!
KREPORT ABUSEMarch 15, 2011 at 8:38 pm #102031
AnonymousInactiveMarch 15, 2011 at 8:38 pmPost count: 14413
probably suffer less risk of eyestrain?
you know, these japanese nationals- i bet that pretty much everyone is either completely avoiding them or blabbering incessantly at them right now. i’d just offer a respectful nod and small smile (which pretty much says it all) and see if they respond with an inviting/opening reply, or just look to keep doing whatever they’re doing- in which case i wouldn’t approach them but would send a note- some people can’t deal with other people when they’re greiving.
if they were open to talking i’d say ‘hey- i wanted you to know that i’m here, and i care, but it’s really hard to know what’s the right thing to say or do at a time like this- please, don’t hesitate to tell me whatever you need, what’d help you most -right now- or whenever you need it- even if it’s a little thing, or if you need something at 2am, give me a call, ok?’…. which sounds really stupid maybe, but they’re in the best place to advise you on what’d help, really.
from asking friends and family who are going through difficult periods just that, i’ve got all kinds of answers, like requests for an ‘escape route’ (a phonecall asking for a ride to get a burger or a beer later that night when they’re trapped in a houseful of wailing relatives, or going nuts thinking in circles), or practical help (some people just don’t wanna cook and forget to eat if someone doesn’t wave a meal under their nose every night, or find it hard to cope with ferrying kids to clubs and groups, picking up granmas pills from the pharmacy, etc, when their mind is fogged up by greif) quite a few cases of “please, just treat me like normal, that helps me keep it together most- and there is so much fussing going on right now my brain might explode if someone else even mentions what’s happening” and ‘thanks mate- just knowing you’re thinking of me is enough right now!” plus the odd “i could really just use a hug, to be honest”…..
they’ll let you know what they need. and if they don’t need anything, they’ll still know that you cared enough to ask and offer.REPORT ABUSE
DEALING WITH NATURAL DISASTERS2011-03-13T14:48:58+00:00
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