I was recently chatting with a friend who’s gone through a very difficult divorce this year and dealing with the aftermath of a family torn apart. Secrets, lies, infidelity, second chances broken, and dreams shattered.
My heart was aching not only for her, but her daughter (my daughter’s good friend) who’s bubbly personality and smile that typically lights up a room has dimmed, if not completely gone out.
Why can someone’s free agency cause so much agony and pain?
How does this happen and how is it ok?
What about the innocent who didn’t choose this?
These are the questions that often run through the minds of the broken hearted.
I know it ran through mine when at the age of 8, my parents marriage was heading downhill, and by the time I was 10, my mother was fleeing with her five kids in an old car, moving across the country to find a new place to start life over.
Yes, we did break down in Ogallala, Nebraska which became a few day adventure I’ll save for another time.
We were truly a family wrecked, with pieces shattered all over, in need to be put back together.
Of course with hindsight, it’s always easier to connect the dots.
Yes, it was devastating to experience my family falling apart. It was hard to grow up without a dad. It was worse to try to understand the unanswerable questions of WHY? As a child, you don’t know better, and the concepts of free agency aren’t fully understood, and certainly not detached from acceptance and self worth. Their mistakes become intertwined with your worth, and it takes time and experience to unravel the mess and realize the inherent need for separation.
But time does heal all wounds, and it can be sped up by a simple acceptance that life is hard, and that’s ok.
Sounds simple doesn’t it?
And you might initially think it’s a pessimistic point of view, but I can assure you it’s not. My world is in fact mostly rose colored, full of sparkles and shiny rainbows, miracles and of course, pink lipstick (it does make everything better - wink).
The secret to creating space for all of that “fluff” one might say, is I reserve plenty of space for it so there isn’t much space at all for resistance.
I’m ok with the hard things life throws at me because I know it will only make me stronger.
I trust that with each difficult experience, I’ll grow, I’ll learn a lesson, I’m becoming prepared for life ahead.
Perhaps I’m becoming more empathetic, or getting ready for even a greater challenge. I don’t need to know why, instead I choose to feel proud to have been given such a great trial - as if it’s directly proportioned to my ability to handle it, and with each one I’m climbing an even bigger mountain, with a summit more beautiful than ever.
You see, if you make friends with hardship, then you can yield these experiences to always work out for your good.
Two of my favorite affirmations are “I can do hard things” and “Everything works out for me.”
When you combine those to be your weapons of war, you can slay any dragon that comes your way. Yes it takes patience, yes it takes forgiveness, and yes it takes understanding the principle of free agency and separating that from your own worth.
These lessons have taken me a lifetime of experiences to truly understand and use for my good. But, now I believe them, whole heartedly, and can honestly look back at my trials with gratitude for the lessons learned, and look forward with hope, trust, and a whole lotta confidence in my ability to do hard things, knowing that whatever life throws me, I’ll be ok. I can do it and love life along the way.
Don’t fight what is, instead embrace it and move through life loving whatever may come your way. It’s a happy way to live!