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  • Jolene Roehlkepartain

What Keeps You Going?

This past weekend with the two mass shootings, I went into shock. This was happening—again? The events flattened me, especially since I knew people with deep connections to El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.

Some people claim that we’re growing numb by all this bad news. People like me, however, feel it all. In fact, I was at the health club working out during the “active situation” going on in El Paso. Tears raced down my face the entire time as I ran on the treadmill.

Although I’m still upset and horrified, I know we need to keep going—while being mindful of these difficult circumstances. How?

1. Be gentle with yourself. Spend time with your loved ones. With children. Exercise. Eat healthy. Take walks in nature. Savor something you truly enjoy. For me? It’s dark chocolate with almonds.

2. Vote in every election. I do not miss one. I vote every year, and I vote in primaries and general elections. Even when I get upset, I don’t disengage. I stay engaged. Voting matters. Every single vote matters.

3. Connect with others. Discuss what’s going. Think creatively about how to develop (and advocate for) changes that will make things better.

“Try not to resist the changes that come your way, instead, let life live through you,” says the poet Rumi. What keeps you going during these trying times?

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