Social media in times of tragedy.

What defines a tragedy? After loosing one of my good friends last Tuesday morning in a tragic car accident, I am so annoyed by people’s petty problems.

I do not have 100 best friends, I would rather have four quarters than 100 pennies. I lost a quarter. To me this is a horrific tragedy. To Amilee, this is a horrific tragedy. Nothing seems to matter, nothing seems important. Katie is dead, yet she is all around me. For the past two years I have talked to her about so many decisions in my life. The colour of my bedroom- Katie; the colour of my kitchen- Katie; my diaper bag- Katie; the salt in my cupboard- I traded her a loaf of homemade bread for it; Freya’s name- it was Katie’s favourite choice (and Mikes); to become a teacher- Katie fully supported me and believed that I would be amazing at it. This tragedy is not going to end soon. I feel like it is just beginning. I see something funny on Instagram, I want to tag Katie in it. We had the same weird sense of humor.

I realize that everyone feels like they are going through tragedy for many different reasons and all people grieve differently.  Social media has definitely changed the way people can share their emotions and condolences. It has been awesome to see how many people have posted pictures of Katie throughout her life and shared stories of her.

Having quarters and not pennies comes naturally to me; especially because I am so focused around my family. My friends are my family. That being said; Amilee is devastated that Katie is gone. Here is a link I found that discusses how to talk to children about tragedy. She is not coping really well; she has had nightmares and overall is not sleeping well and is not as energetic and happy as she usually is. My mother in law suggested using the Jewish tradition of putting a stone by the graveside for Amilee; we will go and pick out a special rock for Katie and Amilee will hold it and put all of her feelings into the rock, and maybe colour on it during her celebration of life.

Through all of this, I need to remember that when I am a teacher my students problems may seem petty, but we really cannot judge what is a tragedy to one person. It is also a good reminder that we all do not really know what is going on in someones home life. I feel like they should have the space to grieve. It is important to understand the signs of a grieving child and to protect them from any disrespectful actions of others through social media.

I am so lucky that Katie was a part of mine, and my girls lives. She was a beautiful soul and is missed so dearly. The lessons she taught me I am still learning, remembering.

Tacos are amazing. There is no such thing as too much butter or too much whipping cream. Margarine is not butter. Wine is always a good idea. You can decorate your house by forging a forest or the dump. Always have at least one fresh herb on hand. Work hard. Laugh. The little things do matter.  and many many more xo


About roxannwaelchli

I launched this page for the ECMP355 class that will go towards my BEAD program from the University of Regina. I graduated last year with a BA in Religious Studies with a minor in Women and Gender Studies. I am a wife and a mom of 2 girls. Here I will be learning about all things techy, which is very out of my comfort zone! And I will also be blogging about my journey learning how to knit, and then teaching my 5 year old to knit too!
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4 Responses to Social media in times of tragedy.

  1. I am so very sorry for your loss, from what you have said Katie seems like she was a lovely person. Due to the class being online, I know we have never actually met in person, but if you need anything don’t hesitate to ask. I think the rock is a great idea. Thank you for this post. It’s a very personal post but I think it has a really good message: We don’t know what is going on in our students lives, so we cannot presume to know what they are going through, like their own tragedy. I think social media can help people express what their loved ones mean to them! Thanks again for sharing your thoughts and memories.
    All the best,


  2. anilakanwal says:

    Hey Roxann, I am really sorry to hear about the tragic death of your friend. It is a big lose for sure. May God rest her soul in peace.


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