I have decided for this one, I am just going to write to empty my heavy heart and figure out what I should be prepared for – definitely a different approach for me.  I usually have a “good gut” feeling of what lesson stands out for yesterday – the lesson could be entitled so many things.  It is definitely an uncomfortable place to be. 

I make jokes all the time about “being an alien” when it comes to raising children, some days I feel like I am invited to planet earth and other days I am in a U.F.O. on a different planet.  I was a child and a teenager once, I should know what to do or say.  Today was a day I really missed my mom and her guidance.   Maybe it is PREPARE to be an ALIEN (not strong enough).  On my status post a friend mentioned PREPARE to MESS UP (not descriptive enough).  Maybe PREPARE to be kicked in the gut…

Have you had the days where you ask or say something innocently… and it turns into a snowball that then rolls down hill out of control picking up more snow, more feelings, more emotions, more speed… it gets larger and larger and out of control.. turns into an avalanche.  That’s it – yesterday was an avalanche –

a sudden drastic flow of snow down a slope occurring when triggers overload the snowpack A sudden drastic flow of UNCONTROLLED WORDS – all going DOWNHILL that occurred when triggers of words being misinterpreted, hormones, tiredness, frustration OVERLOADED the emotional limit of the heart and brain
avalanches are classified by destructive potential or the mass of the downward flowing snow…  I believe what happened could be classified as both – the destructive WORDS and the emotional size going into them made it a double threat!
They pick up and/or bury everything in their path Definitely… picked up more hidden emotions and feelings.

That’s it exactly… PREPARE for an AVALANCHE!!! But is it possible?

Per wikipedia – it is possible to train for avalanches and prevent them at times.

Terrain Management – reducing the exposure to the risks of traveling in avalanche terrain by selecting what areas of slopes to travel on…- Avoid under cutting slopes.- Not traveling over areas where the snowpack is under tension

– Staying away from weaknesses.

– Avoid areas of slopes that expose one to traps


So true with words – maybe it isn’t so much what areas you can talk about, but what areas you should avoid!- avoid under cutting words / actions- avoid areas under tension – oh, is that possible?  I had no idea I was entering an area under tension

– words targeted a weakness that I did not know was there

– yep, definitely did not avoid the trap – fell into a big trap and still feeling very stuck!

Group Management– practice of reducing the risk of having a member of a group or a whole group involved in an avalanche.   .- Minimize the number of the slope and maintain separation. – One person should pass over the slope into an area protected from the avalanche before the next one. 

– Route selection should consider what dangers lie ahead


I definitely need to learn about Group Management – REDUCING THE RISK to those I love!!! Learning how to present my words so they don’t become larger than intended- Respect each others time and space and BEFORE the avalanche starts – SEPARATE!- EACH PERSON should speak one at a time and it should that person should feel safe and listened to for what they have to say!

–  wish I could learn this one! Sometimes I speak and have NO IDEA that a danger zone is just around the corner.  I wish I could have the instinct to know this.  Signs saying AVOID THIS TOPIC would be great! 

Most important of all practice good communication with in a group including clearly communicating the decisions about safe locations, escape routes, and slope choices, and having a clear understanding of every members skills.  Oh, this is the biggest breakdown – COMMUNICATION, COMMUNICATION, COMMUNICATION.  We had no established rules to protect the other from the avalanche.  And definitely lacked the clear understanding of every member!
Leadership – Leadership in avalanche terrain requires well defined decision making protocols that use the observed risk factors I should have taken the Leadership – note for future avalanches (I am sure there will be more).

Avalanches cause danger when their path cannot be predicted and are a major hazard.   For me, it was an avalanche of words, starting out as a single sentence but picked up emotions and hidden issues.  Once the avalanche occurs damage is certain.  You can get knocked over and buried in it’s path.  The key is for prevention of the avalanche.  But, in the event it happens it is in the early rescue.   Saying you are sorry!  And figure out how this can be prevented in the future.

Well, the avalanche hit – people down are down and hurt!  In an attempt for an early rescue an apology offered but not accepted.  Will try again for another attempt at rescuing…..

Dear Lord, I was unprepared for the avalanche. Please, give me wisdom, guidance, and assistance in the rescue.  Help me be silent, and may my actions speak my heart!  Right now I am not sure that actions speak louder than words, but words definitely are not working….

Matthew 15:18 ESV: What comes out of the mouth proceeeds from the heart and this defiles a person.  (ouch the words that came from the heart).

Proverbs 15:1 ESV: A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

Proverbs 17:28 ESV: Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.



One thought on “PREPARE for the AVALANCHE

  1. Julie Umbel February 9, 2012 at 12:13 pm Reply

    It’s okay Sheri, we all have had our “avalanche” days and have survived. God is there for those times and will help us through them. It also turns out to be a good lesson for ourselves and our children to learn how to forgive and apologize, etc. All healthy things to learn in life’s relationships.

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