Fight or flight?

By Kim Stewart

The Hawkeye (Mountlake Terrace, Washington)

Looking back at 9/11 and more recently the Boston Marathon blast, people have started to write about and praise “first responders,” a person when hearing or seeing a catastrophe runs toward the incident immediately looking to help regardless of their previous training.

OK, I know what you’re thinking. If I run away that means I’m a… Absolutely not!

Through circumstance I have had the opportunity to be involved with numerous types of First Aid and disaster training over my career and learned a lot about people.

In minor accidents or full on emergency situations if you cannot handle the situation you’re in then remove yourself from the scene so not to cause psychological harm to others. It’s human nature some of us choose fight and some choose flight.

Having had the opportunity to meet so many people in my life, I have come to the realization there are so many ways people choose to fight. You don’t have to be trained, brave or know all the techniques for CPR.

Having had the opportunity to meet so many people in my life, I have come to the realization there are so many ways people choose to fight.”

There were numerous people the day of the Boston Marathon bombing who took off parts of their clothing to help those injured providing tourniquets or comfort. Those in the area took strangers into [their] homes and businesses or brought water and blankets to those in need. Some raced to hospitals to give blood.

The pictures from that day truly say it all.

[A] Patriot football player carrying injured from the scene. Or the picture of two members of the military who were volunteering that day. The picture captures them running into the thick smoke not hesitating for a second to go help others.

I have three main points of emphasis that are the backbone of my Leadership Class–Empathy: Being open to other points of view, doesn’t mean you need to agree with their views but listen to their side.

Anger: Simply control it. While being empathetic and your ideals or beliefs you realize are different from another person, don’t overreact with anger. Instead of expressing anger see what the view is from their shoes for a second.

Attitude: We all wear our attitudes, good or bad, on our faces every day. You want others to believe [that] you always present your ideals with a positive attitude that doesn’t blame or belittle others.

Over the past five weeks I have been fortunate enough to have witnessed an d been involved with students and staff who chose to fight. You won’t ever know their names or be able to thank them for what they have done but I can assure you we are in their debt. Their acts were nothing short in my opinion of being labeled heroic.

They stuck their necks out for all of us, not worrying about the consequences, but everyone’s well-being.

I do want to thank all of the students here at MTHS who chose the positive side to flight. You chose not to engage in the social media whirlpool that led to making, in some cases, things so much worse.

Finally, we have a new president. Before the election I listened, but I had a lot of trouble with those who said “if that person becomes president I’m moving to…”  I see things like this as flight of the worst kind.

Starting my teaching career as a Health Teacher shaped a major part of my beliefs today and it’s times like these I get into my defensive stance and choose the best route I can be of the most help.

I have been empathetic, controlled my anger and my attitude is still positive upon hearing about all the changes that may be coming down the pike. I’m going to stay and fight for what I believe are things that if lost will negatively affect so many Americans in so many ways it literally breaks my heart.

Be a hero any way you can, like those who stepped up in the past few weeks because like me, [they] love MTHS, and want to make this a better school for everyone every day.

Photo Credit: TheMalt

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