I am a news junkie.
I read the newspaper cover to cover every single day. News radio is typically on in the background while I work. And I get updates for breaking news on my phone throughout the day.
But once I became a mom, I quickly realized that a lot of what is shown on television news isn’t fit for my kids’ eyes and ears. So for the past decade, I have tried my best to keep my news habit mostly to myself.
I have found it hard to strike a balance between keeping my kids informed about current events and exposing them to details that will keep them awake at night. Natural disasters, such as the recent storm Sandy, always pose an extra challenge. After spending an afternoon in April last year huddled in the pantry and watching pieces of people’s roofs blow by, my kids are still spooked by severe weather.
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So while my kids had tracked the path the storm last week in hopes that it wouldn’t interrupt our beach weekend, I hesitated to give them the details about what was happening up North. When they started asking me pointed questions about whether the subways had flooded and people had been taken from their homes in boats, I hesitated.
But then I took a deep breath and answered their questions honestly. And I told them that most importantly, we should keep the people recovering from the storm in our thoughts and prayers.