Protecting this house and each other

Protecting this house and each other

Photo credit: Bella Yoakam

By Farrah Fasse and Grace Cueter

At North, we often circle back to the phrase “protect this house.” Between sports, extracurriculars and school itself, many of us spend more time at school than our own house and subsequently view it as our home. Whether we are going through good times or bad, “protect this house” means more than simply caring for our school and the community created within the building. We are whole, and a break within ourselves causes a ripple effect that is felt by all. As we are such a tight-knit group, the safety of each individual in this house must be the top priority in our minds. We have to take action, pay close attention to our surroundings and spread warmth to all that are around us. 

However, no matter how strong and resilient us Norsemen may be, the recent tragedy at Oxford High School has left a mark on all of us and our house. The loss that occurred affected many aspects of our lives to an extent that we may not have imagined possible. What happened, though it wasn’t within our house, left many of us reeling. As rumors circled around that threatened the sanctity of our house, fear and anxiety heightened. In addition to taking care of ourselves, we must also look after each other. For many young people, school is the safest place they know, and to have that security put into jeopardy is jarring. Unfortunately, the roots of these issues are not going to be fixed in a day, a month or even a year. What we can all do is be kind to ourselves, those in our building and those beyond the walls of our house as everyone in Michigan, and our nation, has been affected by this type of tragedy. Our protection of society can come in the form of love, a push for change and a further focus on the well-being of not only ourselves, but others as well. 

It is completely normal to feel stressed and downhearted, however it is important to handle those emotions in a healthy and beneficial way. There are many outlets within our school that are available when our own thoughts become too much for us to deal with as individuals. Teachers, counselors and fellow students are all open to talk, offer advice and ensure that you are not alone with your emotions. We encourage you to reach out to others, and to share your thoughts and concerns. This tragic event is something that we can process together, not alone. As we remember and honor the victims, it is important to heal ourselves, and this house.