Life: Finding the Collateral Beauty

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“You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it courageously.”

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Life: Finding the Collateral Beauty

by Shanika Graham,
Pain Growth

As bitter and angry as Life may feel sometimes, I am a firm believer that Collateral Beauty is always present, even in the darkest moments. When you’ve lived long enough, you start to understand that Life was never designed to be easy. Life is designed to be a teacher of many things, constantly shaping us into stronger, wiser, more resilient human beings. Sometimes those lessons come in the form of sickness and being able to battle through your recovery. Other lessons come in the form of love or a kind of love that is so strained, empty, and short-coming, that it feels lost. More lessons come in the form of managing Motherhood with the tools you've been given and the fear of it not being enough to get you through. It can also come in the form of financial struggle and the burden of being responsible on your own, while holding it down as a single mother, independent person, etc. Whatever form your lesson may have revealed itself in, just know that the “key” is to not let it defeat you. We were built for this. All of human kind that has ever been known has weathered their storm and came out fighting until the very end. That’s in our design and our DNA despite color, shape, size, ethnicity, religion, or whatever else we use to label ourselves.

"MAYBE LIFE ISN’T ABOUT AVOIDING THE BRUISES. MAYBE IT’S ABOUT COLLECTING THE SCARS TO PROVE WE SHOWED UP FOR IT."

But let’s be honest for a moment. Being victorious may not always feel like it in the midst of the battle. Sometimes the opposition seems too great and sometimes the opposing side makes us feel outnumbered. And while we strive for certain successes regardless of our fears, go after our dreams in the mightiest way possible, love uncontrollably without hesitation, filter out the negativity as much as possible to maintain positive thinking, forgive as much as our hearts allow; unfortunately, we can still settle into feeling like we’ve lost more than we’ve gained in our fight. Sometimes we come out feeling emptier, less valued, more utilized, angry at ourselves for being so vulnerable, so kind, so understanding to those who have not; AND so much more. I understand. I’ve had my moments, too. At times, being the best and bigger person in a world where it’s “every man for themselves” can feel tiring and unproductive. But trust me, it’s not! It's not about them. It's about you. It's about your character and who you are becoming.

"Remember that everything happens in time."

Nothing grows, flourishes, or even changes overnight. EVERYTHING TAKES TIME. Your efforts will be rewarded in time. Karma is far too real. It’s invisible, but exists. I’ve learned that. I’ve seen it. Don’t ever worry about what people do, say, or plan against you. It’s already handled. Life has a great way of ensuring that.