Monthly Archives: July 2016

Go straight to the heart

Heart attacks. Falling down a flight of dark stairs. Electrocution. Breathing equipment that failed when the power went out. An 8-year-old crushed by a tree as he went to check on the baby calves.

And, as expected, drowning, many in their basements or the houses they couldn’t or didn’t evacuate despite pleas from family and friends.

The fatalities of Hurricane Sandy have been reported copiously through the past week, but blogger and author Whitney Hess says she is the first to compile their stories in one place with snapshots. Fatalities come from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, New Hampshire and the Caribbean.

“As the death toll rises, the empathy wanes. It becomes harder to feel the weight of each individual. And it breaks my heart,” Hess writes on her blog. “My boyfriend reminded me of the Stalin quote: ‘One death is a tragedy; one million is a statistic.’ He’s right — the dead become numbers and their uniqueness is lost.”

“I found myself wondering what happened to everyone,” Hess says. “Not for the morbidity, but because I wanted to feel connected to those people, like the little boy who was crushed going to his calves. What happened to him? When did it happen? You don’t think of that happening in 2012.”

Hess says she noticed the number of victims who were caught at home in areas where evacuation had been ordered. Rather than judge harshly, she reminds readers about Hurricane Irene last year. Many residents lost money or suffered hardships when they evacuated before the storm fizzled. “People get tired of the sensationalism and the hyperbole the TV news uses. [Media] create a situation where people are unable to tell the difference between a serious threat and a media ploy.”

She compiled many of her stories from the local press, she says, who talked with friends and relatives about the personalities and stories behind the headlines.

Tips To Create A More Nourishing Environment

If home is where the heart is, where does the soul live? Xorin Balbes, author of SoulSpace: Transform Your Home, Transform Your Life — Creating a Home That Is Free of Clutter, Full of Beauty, and Inspired by You says, there are ways to make our homes more enriching environments for our inner selves.

The process can be an emotional one. We ascribe meaning to the objects we keep around, and letting go of certain memories can be painful. On the flip side, there are items we should surround ourselves with for inspiration. While material things don’t define who we are, they can, as Balbles put it, “support our spiritual evolution.”

“As the death toll rises, the empathy wanes. It becomes harder to feel the weight of each individual. And it breaks my heart,” Hess writes on her blog. “My boyfriend reminded me of the Stalin quote: ‘One death is a tragedy; one million is a statistic.’ He’s right — the dead become numbers and their uniqueness is lost.”

“I found myself wondering what happened to everyone,” Hess says. “Not for the morbidity, but because I wanted to feel connected to those people, like the little boy who was crushed going to his calves. What happened to him? When did it happen? You don’t think of that happening in 2012.”

Hess says she noticed the number of victims who were caught at home in areas where evacuation had been ordered. Rather than judge harshly, she reminds readers about Hurricane Irene last year. Many residents lost money or suffered hardships when they evacuated before the storm fizzled. “People get tired of the sensationalism and the hyperbole the TV news uses. [Media] create a situation where people are unable to tell the difference between a serious threat and a media ploy.”