Monday, March 14, 2011

Daddy, What's a Tsunami?

My twins are only five years old.  As such we do what we can to shelter them from the extreme horrors of this world.  They will have plenty of time to learn and take appropriately managed doses of reality as time moves on.  Last night though as we lay on the playroom floor, there it was.  Horrific images of the destruction in Japan.  I wanted to lurch forward and turn the channel to rainbows and roses but I was paralyzed.  Thoughts of whether or not the kids should watch the flooding, the fires, the crumbling buildings, and the people fleeing in panic hit me like a ton of bricks.  I knew this might be a good learning moment but I also knew it could be the source of their next set of nightmares.  What's a parent to do?

As expected, they started asking questions. 

What is happening?

Who are those people?

Why are cars floating in water?

What's an earthquake?

As we answered their questions we explained that earthquakes happen in some parts of the world shaking the ground and making buildings fall down.  We went on to talk about how the vibrations can make water rise and cause flooding.  While we assured them we were not in an "at risk" area to minimize their worry over their own safety...I saw genuine concern and sadness on their faces. 

We explained that this is why we need to be generous with our blessings and offer help to those that are less fortunate.  Both kids seemed to understand and then shifted their comments to how sad this made them feel and how much they wanted to help.  As I choked down the lump in my throat, I just wanted to scoop them both up, hold them tightly, and protect them from this crazy world.

Please be in prayer about this tragedy and consider what you can do to help those in need...