January 9, 2017

Are you still in disbelief after Friday’s shootings at Ft. Lauderdale Airport? It hit home to so many of us here in Florida. I sat for hours glued to the TV waiting for updates, knowing I had a family member aboard a noon flight ready for take-off. Finally at midnight, we were reunited at the Ft. Lauderdale Convention Center as the American Red Cross fed hundreds of bused-in passengers, and Ft. Lauderdale police did an excellent job of dealing with a situation that you just can’t prepare for or imagine.

Although this is a lifestyle blog for women over 50, I feel a responsibility to share my takeaways. A dear friend whose son survived the 2012 Colorado theater shootings sums it up by saying, “You never know what the day will bring!” And, how right she is.

My main takeaway: This is why we need to pray every day. When faced with a crisis, death or illness, it’s often difficult to find the words to pray because we are caught up in the situation and may not be thinking clearly. Prayer is petition, blessing, praise, intercession and thanksgiving. It’s the best way to start and end your day.

Take a moment to check out the following:

  • PLAN: Develop a family plan for any emergency situation. Add ICE (In Case of Emergency) to your cell phone. Here’s how. Check out the American Red Cross Emergency preparation page. It tells about all types of emergencies and how to prepare and respond to them.
  • PACK: Be sure to have your cell phone charger with you plus a battery back-up. Wear clothing with pockets. Put your your driver’s license, plane ticket, cell phone and some cash in a zip-lock bag in your pocket — even if you are carrying a purse.
  • ATTITUDE: Stay calm. Stay alert and stay quiet. Chaos only adds to chaos.

After being on the sidelines on Friday, here are my three takeaways:

  1. Cherish every moment with your family and friends. (Mend fences. Give hugs.)
  2. Be prepared spiritually. (Begin 2017 with prayer and a gentle spirit.)
  3. Remember to say “I love you.” (Often.)

Interestingly, this photo of a rainbow on the Ft. Lauderdale Airport runway was taken one hour before the shootings occurred.

My heart, thoughts and prayers go out to all of the victims’ families and the injured.

Leave a Comment

  • Mary Stennett

    You are so right Jane. Due to the nature of my work, I have always had a bug out bag that has everything I need for my electronics and ID as well as clothing and other essentials such as eye glasses, contacts. Another great idea if you live in colder climes is to have a cold weather emergency bag with winter survival essentials if your car breaks down or you are stuck in the elements for extended periods. It always a good idea to be both prayerful and planful 😎

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