The Case Against “Couldn’t” – A Guest Post by Brenda L. Boitson   3 comments

I recently finished reading Shawn Smucker’s book, My Amish Roots.  Last night, as I lay in bed, this quote caught my eye.

“…Every day people force themselves to go on without the one they thought they couldn’t go on without.”

After climbing up a narrow mountain trail on the first big trip without hubby.

You have probably said it.  “I couldn’t go on if I ever lost you.”  Shawn admits that he has said this to his wife.  I am sure I said it to Kevin.  But, I haven’t said it to my boyfriend.  Why?  Because I know that it’s a lie.

You never assume the strength that you have until a situation forces that strength upon you.  Don’t get me wrong; it doesn’t feel anything like strength when it happens.  That moment when life thrusts an unexpected disaster upon you makes you feel weak.  Helpless.  Lost.  Lifeless.

But there comes a time when you don’t feel that way any longer.

A time when you smile.

You catch yourself laughing from your gut.

The sun shines, and you realize it’s not so dark anymore.

You can see.  You can live.  You have hope.

When asked if we could ever survive a worst-case-scenario, we tend to deny ourselves our absolute strength.  It’s time to be done with that.

You know that when it comes down to IT, whatever IT is, you will do what you need to do to get through.  You will suck it up.  You will put on your big girl panties (hate that phrase).  You will deal!

You won’t know how at first, but you’ll do some trial and error crap, and you’ll figure it out.

You will feel lost, llike every step is leading you further from life.  It isn’t.  Every step is getting you ahead to a new life.

You will hate things you never thought you could hate and embrace new ideas that you never would have before.  This is because bad situations tend to lead people to live more authentic lives.

Brenda Lee is a freelance writer and blogger whose topics include travel, events, and businesses in central Pennsylvania. Most recently, however, her writing has shifted in focus to the loss of her husband in October 2008 to a rare form of cancer. Widowed at just 24, Brenda is now an advocate for sarcoma cancer, and is working to change how society discusses grief and accepts those grieving at an early age. She is an award winning Yahoo! Contributor and writes for Local Nation by Wyndham in addition to her blog. She is currently editing the first draft of her memoir, “Keepin’ it Kevin” detailing her love and loss story and is actively seeking a publisher.


Posted December 15, 2011 by Andi Cumbo-Floyd in Life Lessons, Relationships, Romance

3 responses to “The Case Against “Couldn’t” – A Guest Post by Brenda L. Boitson

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  1. Pingback: Crazy Widow » Blog Archive » Guest Post at Gray Hair and Acne

  2. Brenda, I whole-heartedly agree. We devalue the amount of strength we have in ourselves with that terrible word “can’t”. Sometimes, you get knocked down further than you can imagine but there always seems to be a way to make it through the other side. Thank you for sharing your story each and every day and proving to so many of us what true strength and looks like. You have my deepest admiration.

  3. Thanks Kirsten. I kick myself down more than I should and it makes no sense why I do. I have come through a lot, I KNOW that no matter what, I am going to survive. Thanks for your encouragement in me and yourself!

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