“Although we can’t always choose what happens to us, we can always choose how to respond.
Children can learn to choose a loving thought over an angry one. When a child realizes that they have the power to positively impact themselves as well as those around them, it is empowering and perpetuates their positive actions and interactions.” -Scarlett Lewis, Founder of the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement and Jesse’s mother
On December 14, 2012, Scarlett Lewis experienced something that no parent should ever have to endure: she lost her son Jesse in an act of unimaginable violence. The day started just like any other, but when a gunman opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Scarlett’s life changed forever. However, this isn’t a story about a massacre. It’s a story about love and survival. It’s about how to face the impossible, how to find courage when you think you have none, and how to choose love instead of anger, fear, or hatred.
Read Scarlett’s journey in her own words…
Scarlett Lewis, author, Nurturing Healing Love: A Mother’s Journey of Love and Forgiveness
HERE ARE SCARLETT’S THOUGHTS, SHARED IN DAVID’S NEW BOOK “POSITIVE THINKING WILL NEVER CHANGE YOUR LIFE…BUT THIS BOOK WILL!”
“I have always been a ‘glass half full’ type of person. I believe this has helped my ability to alter my perspective in certain situations to have a more optimistic outlook. When my 6 year old son was murdered in his 1st grade classroom however, positivity was not going to be enough to get me through the trenches of shock, trauma and mourning. Especially when people around me were using positivity in order to avoid being present with me in my pain and to ease their own discomfort. “You had 6 years to love him!” “He is in a much better place!” “God wanted another angel!”
These seemingly supportive statements actually turned me off to positivity during my grieving. There was nothing good about having my son brutally murdered alongside 19 of his classmates, and six teachers and administrators in one of the worst school shootings in US history.
There was no way around the suffering for me. I was experiencing trauma and grief and soon learned that the two are separate and distinct. I was open to many different modalities of treatment and tried them all, from cranial sacral therapy, EMDR, MNRI, Brainspotting, Reiki, massage, hypnosis and traditional talk therapy. I practiced mindfulness, meditation and prayer. I learned that trauma can be treated and you can recover. Grief is a natural consequence of loss and I began to understand that dealing with it would be more of a process than a specific treatment. I learned to lean in to my emotions rather than avoid them and realized this would become a way of life, rather than recuperation. Thus by embracing the pain I uncovered a lot about myself, my limits, values and inner strengths.
The silver lining in tragedy is that it has inspired tremendous growth in me. It is through my journey of pain and suffering that I expanded and gained wisdom, found joy again and even discovered my mission in life! I had originally wanted to go around my grief, over, under, anything but walking directly through the fire
But it was in the pilgrimage that I found salvation. Had I been able to escape or even fast forward through the extreme discomfort I wouldn’t have cultivated the strength that feeds the resilience that allows me to utilize my experience to be instrumental in creating a world-wide movement to choose love.
I have learned that it is suffering that unites humanity, not the other way around. Everyone suffers to some degree. And interestingly, it is those who have suffered that have the courage to be present in my pain. It is through this authentic connection that hearts unite. If we could get from point a to point b without discomfort then there would be no impetus for growth. Progress and maturation come through tribulation thus the key is to embrace hardship, ask what lessons you can learn, and acknowledge this germination period as the process of blossoming!”
To get Scarlett’s book Nurturing Healing Love: A Mother’s Journey of Love and Forgiveness
To find out more about Scarlett Lewis and the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement Click here
Click here to get David’s new book that Scarlett is a part of! Positive Thinking Will NEVER Change Your Life…But This Book Will