Making the Most of Some Really Unlucky Times: The Story of an Amazing Family

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Back in 2008, I twisted my ankle really badly—so badly, in fact, that I had to use a crutch for at least 3 months, and surgery was an option being considered.  While re-reading this post on how something as simple as walking had become mentally exhausting yet surprisingly relaxing, I was struck by how so many things in life, which can initially be considered a burden, can become just that if we are resigned to them.

As mentioned a little while ago in this other post, resignation isn’t, as many would think, a sign of weakness; rather, it is a sign of strength.  I have started looking for it lately and I am finding it in the most surprising of places.  And I have found that it is intimately related to resilience and joy.

These bring to mind the story of a family I am friend with.  They are not comfortable with me sharing too many details about them, but have approved that I share the following with you, dear reader.

This family has basically not had a break in, like, ever.  The mother and father got married young; both being from abusive, they went into preventative therapy to change the patterns of thought and action that contributed to the generational abuse.

Now I am extremely proud and humbled to say that they have, indeed, managed to get out of that pattern.  But I am also amazed that they did so despite the many challenges they have had in their lives: from disability to joblessness, from health issues to losing all their belongings because of a natural disaster, it seems like this family is just not able to catch a break.

But the interesting thing is that the approach life one step at a time, turning mentally, emotionally, and physically taxing events into opportunities to grow.  The disability was approached as a forced vacation that allowed them to restructure their lives in a way to adapt to the disability, but also to get rid of things in their lives they really didn’t want in the first place.  The lack of job was turned into an opportunity to sell off what they didn’t really use, and to pursue other interests during those stretches of time when jobs were not being posted and the phone remained silent.  The health issues became a way to overhaul their lifestyle, and losing all their belongings became a way to, believe it or not, declutter.

Their word, not mine.

Seriously, guys, this family is an incredible inspiration.  They accepted the things that happened to them with grace, and made the most of them.  And it might sound like they are caught in the depths of despair—but they are not.  They have managed to climb out of poverty, to get their affairs in order, they live in a safe area with their children going to a good school, the disability isn’t affecting the achievement of their goals.  And what do they attribute all of this to?  “Don’t waste time questioning what is happening to you.  It happened and that’s that.  Figure out if you can prevent it from happening again, deal with the effects, and try to use the opportunity to clean up other things in your life.”

No wonder they are such a joyful family!

{ Sahar’s Blog is all about being in a constant state of learning.  So it only made sense for me to go back to all my previous posts and see how my thoughts on certain topics have changed over the last nine years.  In this new, ongoing series of posts, I’ll be rereading some of my older posts and reflecting on the same topic in light of what I’ve learned since then.  It’s going to be very interesting to see how things have changed! }

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