The Secret Strength The Exists Inside You
Earlier this year, I went to an event with a client.
It was one of those “rah-rah woo-woo” type events.
I didn’t know it at the time that I signed up but…my next few days were to be filled with motivational stories from the stage, asking myself some really deep questions, and telling people that I’d never met before (and that I’d probably never see again) some of my deepest darkest secrets.
Before I go too much deeper, I want you to know I’m glad I went.
I believe it’s the culmination of all of our stories and experiences that make us the amazing creatures that we really are. So often we forget how amazing we are. It’s those times that are best for strangers to step in and remind us.
I can’t remember what the particular question was that was asked but I’ll never forget the response of my neighbor when she heard my answer.
You see, a year prior to this event — my world had changed dramatically.
Our son was on his way home when a driver turned in front of him. He was on a motorcycle (yes he had his helmet on) and was left with no time to react. He was thrown into the side of the car at 60 mph.
We got the phone call from the hospital chaplain around 9 pm that evening. After that everything became a blur. The days fed into each other.
Conversations and discussions about what was next all seemed to run together. I can only really account for things by days…
9 days — He spent fighting for his life with doctors waiting for him to die.
35 days — He spent in ICU with family only allowed sporadically throughout the day.
137 days — He spent between multiple hospitals before he was able to come home…in a coma.
184 days — He spent in a coma unable to walk, talk, or eat. Blissfully unaware of the world around him or the nightmare that would be waiting when he awoke.
The question that they had asked at the conference was something about what were your big goals for this year.
What were my goals?
My goals were for my son to walk, to talk, to wake up. My goals were for our family to dig ourselves out of the hole we’d been forced into when that driver made a mistake.
As I shared my goals for our son to walk and our children to cope with the group around me, my neighbor’s face dropped.
“How are you even here???” she asked. “If that had happened to me, there’s no way that I’d be able to come to something like this. I’d be broken.”
“How did you do it? Seriously, how are you here right now?” she continued.
For a moment, I just stared at her.
Over the last year of my life, my family and I had lost every bit of normalcy we had.
Since our son’s accident, our children had lost their schools, their home, and the friends they’d known all their lives when we moved to a different state so their brother could be at a specialty hospital. While my husband and I sat at his bedside, my business and his career silently and slowly fell apart until they were both nonexistent.
We existed on what was left of our savings and retirement.
At the time that she asked me that question, our son was still unable to walk or talk or use the bathroom independently. Our days were filled with crushing medicine, peg tube feedings, turning schedules, countless loads of laundry, desperate prayers, and encouraging words to our children.
So when she asked me, “How are you here?” — I didn’t really have a good response.
Finally, I just said, “How could I not be here? What am I going to do? Give up? Oh no…God’s not done with us yet.”
True, we’d had some very dark days over the last year and a half but even through all of that — I had faith that everything was going to be okay…that if I could just hold on long enough — that God would somehow find a way to work everything out.
All I had to do was to hold on and keep moving in the right direction.
What is the right direction?
It’s the direction of the belief that no matter what your current situation may look like — you believe that something good is on the way.
When doctors told us our son wouldn’t wake up, we just kept taking him to therapy.
When friends and family told us we should come back home so things would be “easier”, we just kept on making it work where our son could get the best care.
Belief is your superpower.
It’s your belief — your true belief that will guide your actions which will create your outcome.
It’s been almost a year since that event.
Our son is walking, talking, and eating independently.
Our younger children have friends in our new town and love their schools.
Our business is rebuilt and honestly — it’s better than ever.
That’s the power of belief.
Believe in what’s possible — even when it’s hard to see.