You are the lucky one

I don’t typically watch sad movies. I don’t particularly like to have my heart pulled from my chest and stomped on by talented writers like John Green. 

Am I scared? Probably. I tell myself it’s because I’ve seen and experienced so much pain in my life that I deserve to laugh. 
The truth is, I am very scared. I have always been scared. Scared to fall into a pain that doesn’t let me go. 

Isn’t that why most of us hide from pain? 

It isn’t the moment when we get our hearts crushed, it’s the millions of moments that come after it that make us feel like we can’t breathe. 

We can all handle a little pain but who survives it? They must be the lucky ones … Right?

I always thought that surviving my pain made me the unlucky one. I had to carry all this around. I had survived but why? What was the point? 

Wouldn’t it have been better if I hadn’t survived? Surely that would have been easier. 

I guess it was time I realized that my pain wasn’t about me. It never was. Just like the stories of those from history who suffered. They have all changed the world somehow. They have made it be what it is today. 

They have taught us to be grateful for the ones we love, to live a life to the fullest, to have compassion for one another. We never know what someone else is carrying with them. 

If you get the chance, watch The Fault In Our Stars (if you haven’t already). John Green (the incredible author of the story) might have some sick fetish about making his audience cry every 20 minutes …

But, who knows you might learn to love deeper, smile bigger (after you use up all the Kleenex in your house), and live your life to the fullest … You know, that fabulous life we are always talking about on here. 

Keep pushing through. You are the lucky one. 🙂

What are you going through? Let me know in your comment below!

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Comments 9
  • Hi Rachel I’ve got to say how much I love your Blog. You’re an absolute fabulous blogger. My pain as I’m sure many may experience, is the lack of love from certain members of my family. It’s heartbreaking to know that they don’t want the best for me and all they want me to do is fail. What hurts more is the terrible things being said and done behind my back.

    • [email protected]
    • Ashleigh
    • 2 years

    Hi Ashleigh!

    Thank you for taking the time to write to me. It honestly means the world. I am so sorry you have dealt with such heartbreaking pain. There are few things harder to stomach than to feel unloved by those close to us. We can begin to feel like we are unloveable even if we know deep down that this is something that they are struggling with (it isn’t about us). The pain is still there and so are the challenges with trusting others.

    Stay strong, beautiful! Little by little, as your forgive, you will be amazed at how you have the strength to step out in faith and be unconditionally loved by someone else. I used to feel so unworthy and unlovable and then I started doing positive affirmations (though I felt VERY silly at first). Soon, I started to feel like I deserved more. I wanted more and I was slowly okay with admitting that to myself. I kept at it, made a vision board, and started to reach out for love from others. YOU can get through this. That doesn’t mean that it will go away entirely. I still doubt myself and have to live with fears … but the more I lovingly walk away from painful relationships, the more control I take back in my own life. That leads me to feel ready for healthy, loving relationships.

    I hope this helps. I am SO sorry for what you are going through. Especially the mean things behind your back YOU do not deserve that. You deserve to have people who love and accept you FOR YOU!

    With all my love,
    Rach

    • Joanne Camberley
    • 2 years

    Rachel

    I’ve been reading your blog for a while and this post really struck a chord and I finally decided to comment.

    I struggle to believe that surviving makes me the lucky one. I wish I could view the world from that perspective and really believe it. I was raped when I was 15. 12 years later and I think living must be a punishment – if I had died either then or soon after I would have been spared so much pain. After that day I withdrew from my life for years and became so guarded I didn’t let anyone in. I couldn’t enjoy anything or go anywhere because the anxiety of not knowing exactly what would happen or who would be there was too debilitating and it was not worth the stress.

    A few years ago I admitted for the first time what happened when I was 15. I thought it would set me free but it made the memories and flashbacks harder to ignore. After a lot of encouragement from a friend and a semi-nervous breakdown I started seeing a therapist and spoke to my doctor who diagnosed depression and anxiety and I finally got some treatment. Things were moving in the right direction but therapy can’t change the past and it’s not a quick fix. This is such a long process and I’m not sure where it ends. If it ever ends. I struggle to trust anyone or believe I am worthy of anyone’s love. Even when I did finally let my guard down with a wonderful man, I screwed it up. After 2 years together I got pregnant (definitely not planned) and that’s where it started going wrong. I was convinced he didn’t want a child with me and thought he felt trapped, like I was forcing him to a lifetime of being connected by our child. No matter how much he told me that wasn’t the case and he wanted both me and my child, I couldn’t truly believe him. I lost the baby at 6 months and we broke up soon after. I had failed in every way. I failed to let him love me and then I failed to safely carry our little girl and bring her into the world. I couldn’t handle the guilt and he couldn’t handle me anymore. He’s so much better off without me but I can’t escape me.

    That was a few months ago and still life is a daily battle and I hate it. I would have a gorgeous baby girl now if only I’d accepted his love. It was all my fault. I hate thoughts of the future because I feel I have no future. I know everything bad in my life stems from the experience of being raped and feeling like I had no right to complain or be upset because I’m not important enough for anyone to care. He made me believe I don’t matter and that has permeated into every experience since. It would have been kinder if I hadn’t survived. I’m only lucky if I get my life back and get to live. I don’t know how that’s possible. Surviving to live a life of misery doesn’t feel very lucky to me.

    I don’t know what your pain stems from but I’m glad you moved on from it and got to a place where you believe you’re lucky to survive. How long did that take you and what did you do? How did you escape from that pain that doesn’t let you go?

    Joanne

  • Hi Joanne, my name is Ashleigh, I’ve just read what has happened to you and I’m truly sorry and saddened by this tragic thing that has happened to you. I just want to let you know that you are not alone, you have people that love you and will support you through this difficult time. I know it will be hard but you need to forgive him for what he did but not for his sake but for yours, by doing so you take away any hold that he has over you.

    I want you to know that you are important, never feel like you aren’t. YOU are enough, YOU matter because YOU exist. I hope that Rachel and I or any loved ones can make you feel like your life is worth living because you truly are worth it.

    • Joanne Camberley
    • 2 years

    Thank you Ashleigh. That was so sweet of you to take the time to say such kind words to a complete stranger. (I nearly said wasted your time – I naturally think I’m not deserving of your time or words).

    Forgiveness is a big hurdle for me. I hope I can forgive myself and somehow relinquish myself from his power one day. (I still can’t fathom forgiveness towards him but maybe that shows I’m a bad person. Not very Christian).

    I can vaguely see a future sometimes, a long way in the distance. But I don’t know how I get there from where I am. It feels out of reach.

    Anyway I won’t ramble on any more. Thanks again. I’m sorry for your pain too. The world is a horrible place to be sometimes.

  • I pride my life on making others feel better. Trust me you are not wasting your time or mine, speaking to me. ([email protected]) here’s my personal email, feel free to contact me whenever you need someone to just listen.

    I hope one day you can release yourself from his power babe. You are not a bad person, after an event like that it can be very hard to forgive the person who harmed you. I’ll pray for you my love.

    The fact that you can see a future is a great start. Maybe start by having a vision board for yourself and slowly, slowly work towards it.

    Much love
    Ashleigh xoxo

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    • Joanne Camberley
    • 2 years

    My Dearest Joanne,

    I am so honored that you chose to open up to me especially in such an open forum. You are so unbelievably courageous and strong. From the bottom of my heart, I am SO SORRY for what you have gone through. I wish I could take your pain away and help you see how amazing you are and what a purpose you have on your life.

    Now, before I get further into all the truths about you (reminding you just how incredible you truly are), I want to address some of the reasons you might be having a challenge letting them sink in.

    I’ve survived a past of abuse. With each type, they are the certain beliefs and types of pain that come up and manifest themselves. Going through something this traumatic, it makes sense that you would feel unbelievably exploited, terrified for your safety, and would have flashbacks that cause you to go back to that moment over and over again. Were you diagnosed with PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder)?

    I want you to know that what you are going through has NOTHING to do with something being wrong with you. This is about someone violating you to your core. What would you say to that baby girl if she were were today and this happened to her? Would she be tainted, unlovable, gross, unworthy?

    Of course not! You would hold her. Love her. Tell her that everything is going to be okay.

    Joanne, you are one of a kind. There is not another person in this entire world who is like you. You are such a beautiful person who is walking through –what I call– the tunnel.

    When my depression took over, I remember feeling like the “walking dead”. I didn’t feel anything. I just floated through, day after day, waiting for my life to be over. I just didn’t want to go on anymore. When I tell you that I TOTALLY understand what you shared, I really mean it.

    Now what? Right? You must be thinking … Yes, you get it by now what!

    You are right about therapy not being a quick fix. Plus, therapy does not fully work if you don’t work with it. For example, attending support groups, doing positive affirmations, opening up to a new perspective. These are all super important parts of recovery. And, while I am in no way a doctor, I will tell you exactly what I have done in my journey of healing myself. My prayer is that it will help you because I bet that you will go on and encourage many women who went through what you have. I believe you will end up being a champion for them by sharing your experience and showing them with your life that they too can survive and live a meaningful life. So, here is my list of things I did to break through the darkness:

    – Became obsessed with positive affirmations. What we think becomes true for us. I truly believe that we have the power of life and death in the tongue. So I made a commitment to ONLY speak good of myself. I no longer spoke self-depreciating statements or told myself what a waste I was. I began saying things like, “I am lovable because I exist”, “I love myself”, “I am safe, only good will come”. Doing 300-400 affirmations (even when if feels incredibly cheesy) made a massive difference. I was speaking life over myself. I even did some in the mirror looking straight in my eyes. The difference was incredible. I even played Louise Hay’s Positive Affirmations to Live By on my iPad ALL the time. While I was sleeping, getting ready for work, when I felt sad. All the time.

    – I began reading all of Louise Hay’s books. She is a best-selling author with a traumatic and sad story. She ended up going on to change the world through love. She was incredibly impactful during the AIDS epidemic. She is such a beautiful person from the inside out. She also hosts the conference, You Can Heal Your Life, with authors like Dr. Wayne Dyer and Cheryl Richardson who come out to speak. It’s life giving!

    – I found an intimate relationship with God. The first thing you learn in any 12 step program is that you need to believe in something/someone bigger than you. My healing ended up being 20% me and 80% God. Find your Higher Power and lean in with all your heart. I pray and meditate all the time.

    – I checked into Timberline Knolls. I NEVER thought I would check into treatment (umm, I’m not an alcoholic). I was CONVINCED that someone had dropped me in someone else’s nightmare … NO WAY did I belong there. Haha. I was so wrong. 30 days of intense treatment and I was scared to re-emerge into life.

    – I found people that I could open up with and they became like sponsors to me. I would call and talk and they would call and check on me. They kept me alive sometimes.

    – One of the most mind blowingly effective things was creating a dream board. I clipped pictures from magazines and Google that I felt a connection to and I glued them to a board. Each photo represented something I wanted in my future. It’s like logging an address in the GPS. You set your destination. 🙂

    Babe, YOU can do this!! I believe in you! Please keep coming back to my blog. I have so much love for you. Honestly, it’s messages like the one you just sent that are the reason why I do what I do! You are not alone.

    With all my love,
    Rachel

  • Hi Rachel

    Thank you for writing back to me. It’s nice to know it’s possible to be happy but it’s feels like a huge mountain to climb right now and I’m tired of fighting and keeping on going through the motions of daily life.

    I guess I have been pretty open, maybe too open given anyone can see this. I just hope nobody I know is going to read this (I’m not in the US) and realise it’s me. I hope there are a few Joanne Camberleys in the world…

    Jo

    • Rachel J
    • 2 years

    Hi Rachel

    I watched The Fault In Our Stars for the first time yesterday afternoon. You were right about the Kleenex!

    Your point about not watching sad movies is interesting. You say you don’t want to be taken back to that place of pain, unable to escape. I almost do the opposite but still with the aim of hiding from my own pain. I’ve always cried at movies, TV shows but not real life. I would watch sad movies over and over so I could cry, have that release yet never have to acknowledge that I was crying for myself. You know the episode of ER where Dr Greene dies? That was the first episode I ever watched, I didn’t know the characters at all, I hadn’t followed the story but I still cried my eyes out over and over again, usually in the middle of the night when I should’ve been asleep. I could connect to a story, empathise with fictional characters’ pain and devastation but not my own. I think it helped me to feel something but it was easier to attach that pain to something that wasn’t my life.

    I share similarities with a lot of Joanne’s story. I’m so sorry for what you’ve been through. I too was raped as a teenager and didn’t tell a soul for a long time. I simply wasn’t emotionally equipped to deal with it. I went through feelings of self blame and shame and can’t say I’ve ever really dealt with it. I don’t know if I ever will.

    More recently my pain has stemmed from loss and The Fault in Our Stars hit a little close to home. My Dad was diagnosed with cancer in 2009 and died in 2012 when I was 23. Was I crying for the characters yesterday or was I crying for my Dad? I don’t know, but I still find other people’s pain (whether real or fictional) opens up a path to let me feel my own.

    More recently it’s been impossible to avoid my pain, it’s been so intense I can’t hide from it. At the end of May my mother and I were involved in a serious car accident. I was largely unhurt but my Mum was badly injured and died 10 days later. Those 10 days were the most excruciating of my life as she clung to life before hope slipped away. Less than 2 weeks later my brother killed himself. I thought he had gone away to get some space and had no idea what he was going to do. I might’ve been able to stop him if I did. I should’ve tried harder to contact him and stop him but it’s too late now and I shouldn’t dwell on it.

    I have lost my parents, my brother and grandparents and have no other siblings, aunts, uncles or cousins. I feel really alone in the world and don’t know what the future holds, if I even have a future. The only positive that I can take out of it is that there’s nobody close left in my life so if I can get through this pain i know I won’t have to go through it with anyone else. If I don’t get close to people I can spare myself pain.

    The only question is how on earth do I get through this pain now? I Know it’s not even been 3 months but it seems impossible that I will ever escape the darkness.

    Rachel (another one!)

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