Over the course of this week I’ve been working on handsewing 26 paper hearts in memory of each child, teacher and staff member who was killed a week ago during the shooting tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut.
Handsewing paper is an act I find soothing and comforting, as well as a containing creative practice in my own art-making that often reminds me about themes of fragility and mending.
The image below was created with the 26 paper hearts and mailed yesterday to The Light of the Heart- A Community Art Therapy Project in Aurora, Illinois who will be sending an art package to Sandy Hook Elementary with messages of love, hope and condolences.
Each heart that I created for this image will also be used for my response to the 26 Acts of Kindness campaign that went viral this week to honor the victims and create collective action to do something life affirming and positive in the wake of this heartbreaking incident. I’ll be sending out tags, cards, and envelopes with one of the 26 paper hearts above with messages of love and creative goodness as my contribution. I’m in. As Ann Curry asked, are you?
Resources & links:
- kind over matter ideas, videos, and free printables for #26actsofkindness
- 26 Acts of Kindness to Honor Newtown Victims
- Parents Trauma Resource Center | Grief and Trauma Resources for Parents & Caregivers : The National Institute for Trauma and Loss in Children (TLC)
- Creativity in Therapy: Coping with Tragedy
- The International Center to Heal Our Children Resources- Children’s National Medical Center : Helping Children Heal from Traumatic Events free e-books and factsheets