Saturday, November 5, 2011

We will recover

Humans are resilient. We have the ability to recover from illness, change or misfortune. We can be stretched, pulled, compressed and bent in multiple directions and yet retain our original shape. We survive. There is an internal strength that we all have, whether we’ve had to use it or not. It is the lifeboat waiting to carry us to safety when the ship sinks.

I have seen this amazing quality displayed repeatedly. When I was pregnant with my oldest daughter, my grandmother was diagnosed with colon cancer. She was rushed in for emergency surgery and told that if she did not undergo chemotherapy she would not survive more than a few years. She chose not to have further treatment. Somehow, thirteen years later, she is not only surviving, she is thriving.

An adored friend of mine was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer. She underwent almost a year of chemotherapy and radiation. All around her (myself included) soon realized just how wimpy we were and how vigorous she was. She handled the ordeal with grace and determination. The last time I saw her, she looked beautiful. She had been stretched and pulled, but bounced back to who she was before.

Some things are not optional. The only way we survive is by trudging through the swamp and not giving up along the way. It may be the most difficult thing we will ever endure, and we may not think we can last another day, but somehow we do. The hard times soon become a distant memory and we look back, amazed that we are still alive. We find strength that had been there all along and it gives us confidence that, whatever the future holds, we will recover.

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