I used to jump out of my sleep in a panic. I remember what a gift Chris was to us. I look at my life and all I am blessed with and I think… why me? Why did I survive that horrific night and he didn’t? Let’s be frank. If that night was about merit, I wouldn’t be the one writing this today. Do you ever feel guilty that you survived? That you made it through a circumstance and someone you know or loved didn’t?
I carried that weight for a long time. I was suicidal. I couldn’t sleep. I thought, like the movie Final Destination, that death missed me that night and it was coming back for me in a more horrific way. I don’t have these thoughts anymore which is why it was strange this topic is resting so heavily on my mind. So maybe this post is for you or maybe I have more guilt to release. The thing is that when I focused on trying to figure out “the why”, I could not. Instead I felt like I was in an unsolvable maze of possibilities without a definite conclusion. Some things, I suppose, we will not have an answer for in this lifetime. However, when I shifted my focus to what I could do having survived, the game changed.
I gave myself permission to laugh, to love and to have fun. I chose to hold on to and value the relationships that mean much to me. I dared myself to explore new lands and to replant my family in a new environment. I tried new foods and went to places I had labelled as “some day” places. I wrote two books and shared my thoughts with the world via my blog. I ditched my fear and opened my mouth to speak the wisdom I heard from God. I no longer see life as a marathon. It is made of short sprints that we take every day not knowing when our finish line comes.
Make the choice to heal. Yes, it is a choice. I can choose to hold on to my pain. I can choose to build walls that prevent me from loving and feeling. I can stay fixated on what I lost and lose what I still have. Breathing but not living is an indictment on every grave. I may have mentioned before that if I didn’t make the choice to heal I would have wasted Chris’ sacrifice that night. He would have died for nothing. This brought me to the deeper revelation that if I did nothing with the life God gave me His sacrifice would be for nothing.
Is guilt holding you from living? Truly? Take the first step… acknowledge that it is a choice and choose differently.
“Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!
Deuteronomy 30:19 NLT
Write Fully Yours
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