Fortitude

Annah Elizabeth Leave a Comment

I cannot begin to convey how amazed and humbled I am by the vast response to the last post. Clearly I touched something in many as the post counter is rapidly rising. I hope you are enjoying my words, and, possibly, finding some message that benefits you. I have a deep belief that some of the stagnation that occurs in our healing process comes from our fear of sharing our vulnerabilities, our thoughts that, sometimes, aren’t of the purest nature.

I have discovered that the more I share, the more people open up. How many times have I heard: “I had a miscarriage, too.” “My cousin’s son died of his own hand.” “My husband had an affair… my husband and I have been in counseling,” or, “We’ve been thinking about counseling; who did you use?”

Communication–networking–has been one of the keys to my sanity, an aid in strengthening my confidence because it reinforces that I am not alone. We hear those words often, and, yet, many of us do not really internalize the truth of the phrase. The more we speak out and share, the more we begin to feel the rhythm of that empathy, that commonality among us.

We are all subject to loss. We are all entitled to healing. That healing begins slowly, comes in fits and starts, ebbing in and out of our lives. We often fight the peace because we feel that somehow we are creating an injustice, a betrayal, especially when our loss stems from the death of a loved one. Somehow, particularly in the premature passing of someone, we often feel that to be happy is to deny the absurdity of that which we consider to be senseless, to discount the value of the life which had existed in the flesh… We all live on in spirit, in the hearts and minds and souls of every person we have touched in our living existance.

Continuing with the flow of the last post, another common platitude is: “There is a purpose for everything.” I must say, this is a delicate balance and I don’t acknowledge this lightly. That said, I do believe there is truth in the statement, yet more in the sense that everything can have meaning; but only if we choose to find a purpose, only if we choose to create something positive from its very antithesis.

William Kamkwamba, a native of Malawi, and the author of the memoir, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, quotes Martin Luther King, Jr.: “If you can’t fly, run; if you can’t run, walk; if you can’t walk, crawl.” And then he states in his own words: “I hope this story finds its way to our brothers and sisters out there who are trying to elevate themselves and their communities, but who may feel discouraged by their poor situation. I want them to know they are not alone. By working together, we can help remove this burden of bad luck from their backs, just as I did, and use it to build a better future.” Thank you, William…

William’s story, one I finsihed yesterday, is one of the most inspiring I’ve read. His words eloquent. His life a reflection of healing, of accepting our circumstances, yet refusing to succumb to defeat as we strive to “build a better future” for ourselves and those around us.

I did not take William to be speaking solely to the economical “poor.” But also to the poor–unfortunate–situation that is created in “bad luck.” When my son died unexpectedly after birth, I wanted to know why? I echoed that word, screaming it out into the universe from deep within my belly, from the vacant space within my womb. Then, finally, after a subsequent miscarriage, a doctor finally said something I understood. My child likely had an illness, his system compromised in some way that went undetected. Though I would address that illness with a “why” for some time to come, I could comprehend the randomness of tragic death…

We all have ability. We all have fortitude. We all have choice. We all have love. Love yourself enough to dig deep and reach far for peace within it. If you choose it, it will come.

In the coming week I will have limited internet access. I wish each of you moments of beauty in these emerging spring days! And, if you are so inclined, I’d love to hear from you! Post a comment or drop me a line at thefivefacets@aol.com. Until we come together again, all my best!

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