Sunday Post 140: Better Than OK

When Lisa was diagnosed with colon cancer, a man from work came up to me and said, “My son had cancer.  It was the best thing that ever happened to our family.  It brought us closer together than we’d ever been before.”

You’re a nut!  I thought to myself politely noddingHis son did live.

I found myself in a similar position to that man this week.  I had a conversation with a friend who was going through a very difficult time.  The table had turned.  I was now the encourager.  And I did my job.

But the interesting thing was that I believed, because of my experience, that she would be OK.  Although her situation seemed dire, I could genuinely see her bad news as an opportunity.  A time for her to turn over a new leaf, to move forward.

THAT’S NOT ME!  My glass is half empty.  What’s going on here?  I can’t take all of this positivity.

How in the heck do you suffer, tremendously, and come out thinking that others can perhaps grow through their trials?

I guess its because –

1)  I made it through and didn’t wilt, which I, and perhaps most other people, thought I might

2)  Good things have happened to me since Lisa died

3)  I have grown significantly through this process

I don’t want to blow smoke up someone’s behind telling them with hollow voice that “everything will be OK.”  I don’t want to be that glass half full guy who says “God will take care of you.”  But I think that I’ve grown to sort of believe that stuff.

Life isn’t always happy.  I have tough days and better days.  In many ways I’m not as fulfilled or content as I was when Lisa was alive.  And yet, I’m OK.  Yeah, better than OK.  And I believe my friend will be too.

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  1. I just finished your book. It made me cry…..but at the end, it made me think that maybe I can be ok, too’
    My situation is not like yours, but losing my mom, my best friend, has beaten me up pretty bad during the last 18 months. Now I need to put on MY big girl panties and start living for and with my own family. My husband and 2 sons deserve it. Thanks for your honesty and encouragement.

    • Danny Tanner

       /  October 20, 2013

      It’s hard, but they deserve the full you. And – you deserve the full you.

  2. My brothers birthday was Friday, and it’s only been 5 months after we lost him (a scant 9 months after he was diagnosed with a heart condition). He would have been 29. I remember those that encouraged me as I was grieving and in turn, I’ll encourage others. It’s not the words that were said, it is the fact that someone cared enough to say them. I’m glad that you took at turn and provided encouragement.

  3. Losing my young niece in an accident 10 months ago really did a number on my life, those of my sister (her mom) and our whole family, really. We are all very close. People give advice the best they know how. Many people warned that “grief comes in waves” and I never understood what the heck they were talking about until I started to experience the waves. (and man…some of them can be rough and very turbulent). It’s amazing how we have all ended up “OK”. I love your perspective and your post hit close to home. Thank you for sharing. I’m glad you’re better than ok.

  4. Hm – interesting, because I’m a glass half empty type as well, but my experiences are similar to yours after my wife Susan died in Aug/2012. I’m not sure I could say I’m better than ok, but I am ok. And I haven’t wilted or collapsed yet, the kids seem to be happy and progressing. I enjoy your posts. I have 4 boys and 1 girl so at least the hair problems are vastly reduced in scale compared to yours.

    • Danny Tanner

       /  October 24, 2013

      Good lord man – five kids with no wife. I don’t know how you do it. And, by the way, I wasn’t better than OK 14 months out- it’s been over three years for me. You’ve got a ways to go.

      • Thanks – and thanks for your book, I noticed it on the blog and read it this week. It was hard to go to those familiar places through your experiences but really appreciate your honestly and outlook. Blessings to you and your girls.

  5. Reblogged this on 100% and commented:
    Too true.

  6. I always relate to blogs like this.

  7. Love your blog and this story. I just wrote about losing my dad in April. I have to put my hurt and pain away and be there for my kids. I have to stop being Doug’s daughter and be Zion, Jireh, and Josiah’s mom because just like my dad was my hero, I’m theirs. Your messages will bless a lot of people. God bless you and your family!

    • Danny Tanner

       /  October 24, 2013

      Move forward, but don’t feel like you have to fmove fast. Grief takes time –

  8. Reblogged this on fipwmum's Blog and commented:
    I work in a hospice and have quoted some of the stuff you’ve said to my bereaved clients!

  9. It’s incredible to read through your posts hun! They’re awesome and touched me to the core! I got your site through A Widow at Midlife: Seriously? community, she said that you have given her inspiration through time. I certainly can see why! I, as you said after 18 months you felt ok…better than ok. I believe I did as well, until the loss of both of my parents in the last 1 1/2 years and my last two children moving on with thier lifes. It has brought up all of the feelings and emotions that I’m sure, now, I had suppressed in order to finish raising them. I’m trying to see the glass half full, but there are times that that is relatively impossible! I’m so glad that I have found the two of ya’lls posts…I’ve never spent the time on the computer to even do searches for connectiong with others in the same situation as myself! Thanks for sharing your inner most thoughts and being an incredible bright spot in my day!!
    Vicki D

    • Danny Tanner

       /  July 16, 2014

      It is interesting that sometimes you think you’ve sort of moved forward, that maybe you have your legs back under you, and then something happens to toss you backwards. I think about those life altering events that are coming my way in time. I wonder how I’ll handle them. You know, it’s not supposed to happen like this. We’re supposed to have our spouse beside us to get through all of this crap – like seemingly everyone else does. Life can be good again, but it’s not fully the same. Hang in there.

  10. I can’t find a link to your blog, help.

  11. Danny Tanner

     /  October 24, 2013 – join us!

  1. Be Still… | A Widow at Midlife: Seriously?

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