I consider myself an “eternal optimist”. I can almost always find the good in any situation whether in the moment or upon looking back later. In the past I have stated, “everything happens for a reason”. Pondering this more this morning, I realized this statement can be naïve, selfish and insensitive. I have experienced some very traumatic events in my life, and I hate to think those things had to happen to fulfill some higher purpose.
I have been facing some health challenges recently, and in my weak moments of self-pity instead of letting myself slink into the pit of despair for more than a moment, I start to ponder what good can come of this. Although this may not be happening for a reason, it is happening. Now, it is up to me to decide what to do with this experience.
Compassion. Empathy. A deep and full understanding of someone else’s circumstances and perspective. If you haven’t been through something yourself you can have empathy and feel compassion for someone, but you will never understand completely. Isn’t that what most of us seek in life. Someone who truly understands us and what we are going through. We seek this out in friendships, groups, on social media and in daily conversation. We all want to be seen and understood. We want to be fully known. This is my takeaway from this experience. Through my struggle, I now have a deeper understanding, a deeper level of compassion and empathy for people that are going through what I have been through. Although things, in my opinion, may not always happen for a reason, everything can be turned around to be used for good for others. I feel like I’ve heard that somewhere before…. Love your neighbor as yourself.
- Cat Dobbs, Founder + Former Surrogate