#HAWMC: All Learning Bears A Gift

This post continues the month-long series called the Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge (#HAWMC) created by WEGO Health.  Today’s writing prompt:     Health Activist Choice! Write about what you want today/quotation inspiration. 

I came across this quote today and it really stuck with me.  I thought back to the writing prompt from earlier this week asking that each writer respond to a particular quote.  I chose: What doesn’t kill you will make you stronger. When I saw this quote it made me think perhaps, this is a more accurate assessment of surviving a traumatic event.  Why? You ask.  When you survive an extraordinary event, in this scenario one that is extraordinarily adverse, you become a member of a small community that has knowledge and perhaps insight into something that others can only describe as unimaginable.  Because it is unimaginable, they cannot begin to speak with any authenticity about how they (or you, for that matter) could process the trauma/loss and go on.  I believe that to be the “learning” referenced in the quote.  I’ll pause to address that terribly insulting phrase, “get over it.”  I don’t agree that this happens.  You carry it with you for the duration.  The issue becomes, how do you carry it? Now, the word “gift” may be what generates the greatest consideration. Is knowledge of the unimaginable or extraordinary a gift?  Perhaps the knowledge that we must work to forgive because in forgiveness we save ourselves and not the perpetrator of the crime/injustice/insult or slight is the gift.  Or maybe, the knowledge of how to live, how to keep going with that scar (be it physical or otherwise) is the gift.  Victims of trauma/loss are forever changed but it’s more analagous to becoming an adult and no longer having the freedom to view the world as you did when you were a child.  The transformative psychological evolution that the “what doesn’t kill you…” statement implies is requisite may indeed occur. It is certainly not requisite.  The transformation that comes through knowing a truth that you once had the luxury to ignore or deny, I believe is transformative weather a survivor goes on to thrive after the event or not.  This results from the fact, as I stated previously, that you carry it with you.  How do you carry it? How does that knowledge inform everything else that you say, do, think, and feel? Which of these two quotes do you gravitate towards in a more positive way?

Read what quotes inspire other health activists at the WEGO Health Facebook Page.
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