In January of this year my little family took a turn for the different which caused this year to be a bucket full of firsts. I’ve recently stumbled upon a couple quotes that interestingly seemed to define the last year for me perfectly. Both by M. Scott Peck. While reading The Road Less Traveled this one stopped me dead in my tracks:
Benjamin Franklin said, “Things that hurt, instruct.” Peck goes on to say “It is for this reason that wise people learn not to dread, but actually to welcome problems and actually to welcome the pain of problems.” Now I’m not saying I am wise, and if this is the definition of wise, then most of us are not. Who welcomes problems with open arms?
However through 2014 I have seen problems come and go. Some much harder than others, and although I’m not happy to see them, I have found it easy to quickly see the blessings that have come to my family from each, taking them, learning from them and letting them go. I’ve seen people around me become stronger through these trials and hardships, and I’ve seen the light at the end of the tunnel for everyone involved. In a sense, it has taught me to embrace tribulation, because we have only come out better people. The hardest part of these trials has been watching my little ones suffer. I have spent many hours on my knees praying for their happiness. I’ve been given strength to be strong for them, and that has helped them to stay positive, happy, innocent and full of love for life, even when that life got hard. This brings me to the second life changing quote, which says “If my parents are willing to suffer, then suffering must not be so bad, and I should be willing to suffer with myself.” Boy, did this hit me hard. Our family has most definitely suffered together this year. I have done my very best to be strong for the little ones, but they undoubtedly have seen and felt my pain. And felt very real pain themselves. I do feel, however, that pulling each other through and watching one another work through the hard times has made us quite the team. I have learned a lot of self-discipline through it all. I’ve learned the value of facing problems head on, really going through it, and the value of doing so when I see those problems and trials resolved successfully. Successfully hasn’t always meant that what we want to happen actually does. But it means that somehow we have bettered ourselves and the world around us through it.
I am wrapping up 2014 in gratitude for my family and all the people in my life. Every last one of them. Grateful for the joy and the pain and welcoming a new year and all it will bring, with big open arms and a kiss. Happy happy New Year everyone!