by Robin Chodak
We all have stories. Your unique story began the day you were born. Each experience in your life from the moment you took your first breath up to this instant creates your story. I like to think of it as watching a movie. I always watch ones with anticipation of what will transpire at the end. My inner desire is that the end of the movie leaves me with warm, happy feelings. But not all movies end that way! Some have left me with despair and unanswered questions. Isn’t life just like that?
I prefer to watch movies with uplifting, positive endings. Those types resonate with me. They create emotions and feelings that I enjoy and want to hold onto, not those that make me cringe and want to avoid.
The reality is that many life stories have bad endings just like in the movies we watch. Yours may have a bad one too. The movie I was in certainly did. Mine happened in 2005 when my husband Steve died by suicide. I felt my movie was a tragedy, and when Steve died, I felt my character had to die too. I thought about it seriously in my real life. Those thoughts frighted me, and that’s when I reached out for help. I sought help at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and with a therapist, a coach and support groups.
Although, I had the support I needed something much greater happened to me. I call it divine insight. I realized that Steve’s death was a tragedy in our movie together, but my part in the movie hadn’t ended yet. Therefore, I still had a story to write. I had my own personal epiphany!
The epiphany was that I held the same power that writers and Hollywood movie producers had. If they could write a story to produce inspiration and hope to make a difference in someone’s life, then I could too. I realized I could write a new story with me as the main character. I would create my character as a woman who would begin to see the world with new eyes. Not one as a victim to the tragedies of life but one that would have hope.
So how did I do it? First, I realized there was a source far greater than myself in the universe that I could tap into for guidance. Then, I made the decision that I wasn’t just “going to exist” but instead learn to live and “Love Life After Loss.” That is when my new movie started.
I vowed to make my story a beautiful tale of triumph just as an oyster creates a beautiful pearl. Whereas it must deal with pain for years while the work is being done, and then when the time is ready the beautiful pearl appears.
I understood my journey would be long with challenges, but I had hope my story would have purpose and meaning. Therefore, I kept moving forward to create a new life, one of excellence! It meant that I would find joy in the simple things in life and live with a new perspective; one filled with gratitude and expectancy of only good. Everything began to change. I left my job in corporate America as a computer systems analyst, and trained to become a grief coach and started my own coaching business. I’ve written three books and three UDEMY Courses. I met a wonderful man named Gerry, and we married on 11/11/11.
My movie is still playing at this moment.
Sadly, Gerry died suddenly in our home in September 2019, therefore, all that I have learned and taught must be put into practice in my life. Despite all my pain and suffering, I am still writing my story. I choose to create it moment by moment finding beauty and gratitude in the simplicity of life.
The question I have for you is: who is writing your story? Who have you given the power to create your movie?
You must understand that every choice you make will result in how your story unfolds. Decide what you want in your life and move in the direction of attaining it. But, be sure that the choices you make are made with intentions of good for yourself and others.
Your thoughts must always be in congruence with your beliefs. And remember, your beliefs can always be changed. Just because you held a certain belief while you were young doesn’t mean you must hold it today. I changed my beliefs, and that’s when my story changed. You can do the same. I share mine to encourage you and others.
For more information about Robin, you can check out her website.
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