The bad things, the hurtful things were like banners and badges. In some ways, my responses to bad events were accomplishments. I thought of them as character-building experiences. I didn’t want revenge or glory, but I think I wanted someone to see . . . to see what? . . . to see what hurt me to help me understand. Yet somehow those events began to define me. The accomplishments and the events became the same things. Then they became part of me.
I still think that bad events can build character. I know that mine changed me, and now finally for the better. Then I thought living through the pain was the learning they had to offer. Now I know the real learning was when I could say I laid down the pain.
I blessed it, buried it, and walked away from it.
I still remember, but no longer define myself by it.
I am more than what happens to me.
−me strauss Letting me be