Friday, May 8, 2009

Grace Under Fire

I know, it's been a month since I blogged. To tell you the truth it's been kind of a strange time. My doctor has been changing my anxiety meds, trying to find one that will work better than the lexipro. Well, switching medications is never fun, at least not for someone who depends on them each and every day. I find myself having trouble focusing and also feel like I'm falling deeper and deeper into a rut. But no matter what, we are always going onward and upward, right!

Well, if you were by any chance feeling sorry for yourself, you won't be after you watch this video. Unfortunately, ABC disables the embed feature on youtube, but take a minute and watch the 2+ minute video. No really... we'll wait for you...

Ok, in case you are too pressed for time to actually watch the video, here is a short synopsus. So, Connie Culp has been in the news recently. She is the woman who had the cutting edge "face transplant" surgery after being shot in the face by her abusive husband. Well, this morning, Diane Sawyer interved Ms. Culp on GMA (that's Good Morning America for all you uncool people) ;-)

To say I was mesmerized doesn't even come close to identifying the emotions I experienced watching this amazing woman. In the domestic violence world, we prefer to use the term "survivor" instead of "victim" to describe those who have experienced abuse. If anyone embodies the victorius spirit of this word, it is Ms. Culp. Since I cannot embed the video, I would usually post a picture, but it would do her no justice. Because, see, in a picture you cannot hear her childlike laughter... you cannot see the twinkle that dances in her eyes... you cannot laugh at this remarkable woman's amazing since of humor, a sense of humor that would elicit a chuckle even from Uncle Scrooge... and you cannot see the enormous smile that flirts right under the surface, begging to be released as soon as the newly grafted skin and nerves grow back.

This woman who, by anyone's standards, deserves to be negative, depressed, critical, and sarcastic, instead spends her time being upbeat, positive, encouraging, THANKFUL(!!!), and an inspiration if I've ever seen one! So, what's my excuse? I wish I could bring her on all my DV on-call runs to the hospital. What a remarkable spokeswoman for the DV community!!! From now on, I will point to her and say, "See! She got through it! You will too! One way or another, you will get through this!" And hopefully, the next time I am feeling sorry for myself, I will remember that no matter what, life is precious... a time to spend celebrating the little joys and loving those around me.

Ms. Culp, if you ever read this... Thank you. Thank you for a new perspective on life. Thank you for a renewed sense of gratitude. Thank you for reminding me of how strong we each are. Thank you for inspiring me, in the (paraphrased) words of your favorite song, to love deeper, speak sweeter, give forgiveness I've been denying... to live like I was dying. (Tim McGraw, Live Like You Were Dying)

You are in my thoughts. I would wish that you find strength and peace, but it looks like you are doing just fine with those things on your own. You are truly an inspiration. Thank you for sharing your story!

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