Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College

Unanticipated Time to Reflect Thanks to Hurricane Sandy

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By: Beth Throne, J.D. '95, Associate Vice President for Student & Post-Graduate Development
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Hurricane Sandy did a lot more than flood roads, close workplaces and cancel classes.  She forced many of us to stay indoors, derailing our normal life routines.  In my case, this meant my husband and me keeping our three children busy with craft projects, board games and, pending power loss, an array of Disney movies while keeping in our thoughts those whose lives were being devastated by the storm.  Said differently, Sandy allowed unanticipated time to spend with our greatest treasures and reflect upon what is important.  
So often, life’s hectic pace leaves us very little time for reflection.  We go from commitment to commitment, not taking time to realize what is truly important.  American philosopher and psychologist, John Dewey, once remarked that:  “We do not learn from experience…we learn from reflecting on experience.”  Yet, if we do not make time to reflect – as so little of us do on a regular basis – how do we live consistent with our priorities and our values?  The answer is: we may not.
Whether you took in someone whose home was affected by the storm, shared a book with a child by flashlight, or reached out to a family member or colleague whose welfare concerned you, I hope that you reflected upon what truly matters and the central values which connect us all. 
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