I No Longer Wish To Live In Interesting Times – Please Update Your Records Accordingly
May you live in interesting times.
– Chinese proverb
Actually, it’s probably not really Chinese. At least the sites online that try to source quotes cannot tie it to any Chinese literature. But, it sounds true and that’s good enough most times. It’s also not a blessing. It is widely considered to an ironic curse.
I live in interesting times. Sometimes they are of my own creation. I chose to have a large family. I chose to adopt 10 children from all over the world. (Including China.) I chose to work for Microsoft for nearly 10 years at one point. I chose to move my family across the country on nothing more than a handshake agreement that turned sour. I choose to live in a state that regularly gets snow and ice in the winter. (And never cancelling anything because of snow.)
Many of my interesting times are a result of my own choices. I fully accept and to a large extend expected those times.
It’s the unexpected interesting times that are the hardest to deal with. I never thought I would spend as much time in junivile court as I do. And, sadly, I attend so often, it’s become routine. And then they aren’t. My children remind me that their lives are different than that of their friends. In fairness, I told my parents the same thing. I was right and so are my kids.
As an adult, I can point directly to events in my childhood, traumatic at the time, that not only make me the man I am today, but provide me with tools I wouldn’t have otherwise had. My interesting times not only defined me, they helped me.
That which doesn’t kill me makes me stronger
Right? We’ve all heard this. And yet, it’s not true, of course. Ask a victim of sexual assault. They become broken. Sometimes they never recover. Sometimes it takes years. Those around a victim of sexual assault, especially when it’s a child involed, become secondary victims. They would not describe themselves as stronger.
You might be tempted to say, “But, your strength of character, ability to overcome hardships, etc. . .” Unless you’ve been through it, you cannot possibly know. Sure, we see some survivors who seem to flourish. While the assault was horrible, they emerge stronger. A strength born of unspeakable pain and suffering. I do not doubt those people for a moment. They did get stronger.
Not everyone is like that. For some people, victims and family, it’s like a cancer that, while treatable is incurable. It’s always there, sapping emotional strength, sowing distrust in all future relationships. Physical wounds heal. Emotional wounds remain forever. They may scar over, but they shape the future in a way that cannot be avoided.
You have a choice, but really you have no choice. The choice is to deal with it, accept that your life is changed forever and move on, or not. But, “not” isn’t really an option.
To victims of assult, physcial, sexual, emotional, I pray for your strength to go.
Please pray for me.
NOTE: This post should NOT be interpreted to mean that any NEW events have happened to me and mine. Just acknowledging that the road goes on forever and sometimes you just want to stop and rest a few minutes.
Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.
(c) 2017 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved