Summer 2016 has been an emotional and difficult one for many around the world and in Washington. Headlines from Orlando, Nice, Dallas - and hitting home in Mukilteo - are often hard to comprehend and process.

Many have shared stories of coping and community this past weekend. On Monday, KING 5 asked a pastor, a cancer survivor and a counselor to share their advice for getting through dark days.


"I tell people gather, don't isolate. We're so isolated. Gather, give back to make a difference in others and not just kind of go inside. Then do the God stuff because many people already have a faith. We're just not practicing it."

“Sometimes we pretend like it’s all going to be easy. I think if we’re pretending it’s going to be easy, that’s the beginning of the problem. We get up in the morning and know bad things happen, evil exists and we are part of the answer.”

“Focus on what you can control and we decide what the 253 area code is like.”


"Right now I am living with cancer – stage 4 breast cancer - for my third time. Some people would say they're dying from cancer. I say BIG LIVING with little cancer. That's because although it's metastasized and it's everywhere, I still feel great. I still feel I can beat those odds."

"This is not only my third time but my identical sister Tracy had cancer three times also. The same breast cancer. Although I had it first and she had it second then I got mine back again then we both had doubled mastectomies the same year – this was 10 years ago. Hers came back furiously in 2014 and we laid her to rest two years ago."

"One of my favorite words that helps me is "choices." I have choices of what I let in deeply, what I observe and learn from. My other favorite "C word" combined with that is "control." What's in our control … what's not in our control."

"In my case cancer is not in my control. It never was. It never will be. What's in my control are the choices I make on what I do every day, where I go, the people I see, how many times I tell my children and family I love them. Those are things I can control."

“Where I’m lucky is I can still give back and help prevent stages 1, 2 and 3 by being and advocate from the American Cancer Society. Why can’t I help the American Cancer Society help the disadvantaged give people rides to their treatments who can’t find a ride? There are people way less lucky than me.”


"I hear a lot of trauma. I hear a lot of tragic stories in the lives of my clients. It's heartbreaking when this bleeds out into our community."

"I think of these young people now who we have all of these wonderful technological things but they're very isolating."

"Many kids feel very alone in the midst of all kinds of stuff."

"I'm a grandma now but as adults - for us to be aware that they speak a different language than we do. I just go 'I don't understand that. Help me know what you're talking about there with this technical stuff.' I think we can laugh about that but we can connect with them and really make an effort to do that. Especially with this tragedy, I'm hopeful that people will be mindful of the young people around them and listen and give them a chance to share their hurts, dream and aspirations that there's still hope in this world."

The American Psychological Association wrote a post about managing distress in the aftermath of a shooting detailing how people should talk about events and honoring feelings.