Updated: Aug 3, 2018
What Now? Rising from victim to victor as those affected by devastation triumph over tragedy. We desire change, but incrementally, preferably to be in charge of what goes and when. I've had numerous events I'd rather not have encountered, but they have arrived by piggyback, one stepping down while the other takes its place, leaving ample room for the drama, why me and what am I supposed to be learning? Small in comparison to other's experiences, but large enough to realize the importance of movement. Taking steps and allowing faith to lead. What would I do if I were faced with a sudden and devastating tragedy? Would I want to move on?
Would I be able to handle it? Yes. With support. We always have the option of making it on our own or exclaiming, “Help, please!“ Conditioned by our culture which values independence, it can be embarrassing to ask for assistance. Extended family rarely lives two doors down. We're out of practice calling on our neighbors, and stranger danger still exists. Sometimes it is a devastating event that brings us back together. Yes, you can go it alone. Some prefer it, motivated by that spark of I can do it. Challenged by climbing the ladder with broken rungs solo, cheering yourself to the top. Proud, you did it without help. Grateful you didn't fall, for who would have caught you? Or, you can reach out and accept the hand reaching towards you, ready to guide you along the way. Nurtured, loved, you are heard and understood. Inspired by other's personal stories you climb the ladder, rungs repaired. The group cheers as you ascend to the top. Proud of your accomplishment, and grateful that if you slipped, someone was there to catch you.
Helping hands At nine, John O’Leary experienced sudden devastation when 100% of his body was burned during a fire. Support went beyond his family, extending to the community. Together, they encouraged John, challenging him to reach beyond his limitations, and cheered him on. Inspired and more determined to survive, he chose to move ahead, rising from victim to victor.
Hear John's story in the interview with Mike Robbins, and in his book, On Fire.