Sometimes it happens in a moment. Sometimes we don’t have a choice. Sometimes we break.
I am a strong believer in the power of choice, our ability to decide what our lives will be and the heavy responsibility that accompanies it all. But regardless of how long I have fought against the notion, I have come to accept that sometimes we don’t have a choice. Sometimes life happens and we are but an involuntary reaction to it. Sometimes all we can do is break.
It is a bitter stark realization and one never more real than when I received the news that a family member’s 37-year-old husband had died suddenly one morning due to heart complications. I knew, as I sat with the news, that my cousin had no choice but to break. After all, how could she not? Her world had changed forever, and continues to change constantly as she immediately lives a life she has never known, one without her beloved spouse.
There’s a fragility and solemn beauty to the human life that we are not always strong, coupled with the fact that we’re not supposed to be. Yet just because we break does not mean we are broken. We are not merely a sum of the choices we have made and the ones that have been made for us. We are not defined by the tragedies of our past, but who we choose to be in the present.
This is evidenced over time through experience as we learn an incomparable truth: what can break can be rebuilt. What once was shattered can be made whole. Perhaps not in the same fashion as it was before, but in a different version of our life, one that exists now – unbroken – because we have found the courage to live it.
Snow Patrol – This Isn’t Everything You Are