Everyone has been through some excruciatingly painful moments in their lives. You know the ones.
The bad ones.
The ones that leave you gasping for air as sobs are wracking your entire body. The nights where you aren’t sure how you’re going to keep making it until morning…day after day. The days where you spend all your energy wearing a smile for those around you, only to come home, finally all alone, and lay your head down and let the tears flow. Those moments where even those that don’t believe in a God are on their knees, praying for the hurt to stop. Praying for just one day and night of peace. These moments often mark a point in our life that we can no longer return to. There is simply a before, and there is an after.
As painful and dark as some moments in life are, I think they are important. They prepare us for what’s to come and open us up to possibilities we otherwise wouldn’t, or couldn’t, appreciate.
As much as we might not care to admit it, these painful moments define us. They break us down, bare our soul, run our emotions raw and ragged, so that when we do come across something that’s right…we feel it right to our bones. The barricades that we build up around our hearts are often left shattered in the process, our defenses obliterated, leaving us vulnerable and exposed. Which, coincidentally, is the perfect time, sometimes, for something good to walk into your life.
And that’s when it happens. The unmistakable feeling that this situation, or this person, is going to help put you back together…reveal the *you* that you have desperately been trying to find and uncover. For some of us this might be moving to a new city. For others this could be starting a new job. It might be falling in love with an amazing person. Or it could be a combination of these, or other things.
Whatever the trigger the end result is the same, and slowly you start forging your new self. Taking all the pain and heartache, the feelings of weakness and uncertainty, and merging them with your new-found strength, your resilience, and unwavering faith that everything will be ok. Instead of simply surviving, you begin thriving.
Your smile becomes real again and your eyes sparkle when you laugh.
You start becoming confident, trying things you never had before, finding joy in the new.
Instead of simply going through the motions you start each day with purpose, actively searching out people, places, and things that soothe and nourish you and your soul.
But…you’re still human. And despite all these wonderful changes, there will still be nights that are long. Days that are tough. Times when it hurts to smile. But the difference is that this time you KNOW that you will be fine. You KNOW that you have made it through the worst of the storm. You KNOW you are strong. You KNOW you are loved and that you deserve this love and happiness. And if you’re lucky like I am, there will be someone incredible by your side reminding you of these things when you have forgotten them.