I lead a very charmed life. I find myself at times overwhelmed with gratitude for my general and many material blessings, the love I receive from family and friends, the calm in my life in the past couple years. I have had to realize that I do actually finally have calm in my life, there is very little drama and very little that I want for. In the past couple years my feelings have changed from being centered around the tragedy I have had and letting that be a focal point (naturally and sometimes rightly so) to knowing that it is a chapter of my life that while important; does not define me or my place in the world or my interactions with those around me.
I do not mean to say that I let that tragedy take over my life or that I did nothing but feel like victim; but more that I felt as if it cast a shadow that I would always carry around, a dark force I would always have to contend with and define part of my life with. There is some truth to that, in that there are some things we never get over but eventually find a way to move on with them. There are some things that do change us and that will somewhat color our interactions and our perspectives. But even with that being true, I have been able to feel that I am emerging into who I’d still want to be, scars notwithstanding.
I have been able to feel that I can use my experiences to not wholly define me, but to take with me as perspective and insight; and things that have shaped me but more and more in ways that I define.
And I suppose that is one of the greatest blessings I have enjoyed. As a Christ-believing person I do attribute much of that to grace, to a power that is beyond me and greater than me and that has helped me more than I could help myself. Now at ten years, I can say that I have enjoyed more light in my life than dark, and even that darkness does not have the power it once had.