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Last week was a not-so-good week for me. Nothing tragic, mind you. Just things like major car repairs, intellectual property theft and a big fat dose of heart-breaking rejection. That hurt.

Now, I know that in life, happiness can often be determined by how you look at a situation. Finding the silver lining. Looking on the bright side. Being able to put a positive spin on things can serve you well. But man, it is not easy. Yesterday, when I was feeling particularly low, I listened to my friend Marisa’s podcast on dealing with adversity. She’s a smart cookie, that one. I do believe that everything that has happened in my life, good along with the bad, has lead me to be the person that I am today. And I like me. So does that mean that those “bad things” were actually good because they made me me? Does hardship make you “better”? Does suffering a loss make the next loss easier to take?

People say “Everything happens for a reason”. I don’t know if I believe that. What about senseless crime? And cancer? For some things in life, there are no reasons. And that is difficult to swallow.

My worries are minimal, in the grand scheme. Today I am counting my blessings, for certainly I have many. My goal is to remember to be good to myself. Why do I have to remind myself? I don’t know. But I need to be good to me.

You be good to you too, ok?

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Showing 39 comments
  • Cheryl Arkison

    That does sounds like a rough week! Hang in there this week.

    I firmly believe that we are the sum of our choices in life. Sometimes we make good ones and sometimes we make bad ones. Shit happens and life is really about how we respond to the bad stuff (the good too). But every little thing adds up to who we are in this moment.

  • Michelle | Cicada Studio

    Well dang. I’m sorry to hear about your not so great week, and happy to hear about your positive outlook (or at least the attempt at one).

    Hoping it washes past you quickly and the next “good thing” happens soon.

  • Jennifer

    Experiences, good and bad, do make us who we are,though that doesn’t make them any easier to bear sometimes. Hope you have a better week. Lovely photos.

  • Hashi

    I will!

  • blair

    Sorry it wasn’t a good week. Wish we lived closer to commiserate, mine wasn’t stellar either. But, I’m keeping my chin up, because sooner or later that works its magic for me, and I’m over it. ((((((hug)))))

  • Janet McKinney

    I also don’t hold to the “everything happens for a reason” theory – because there was no reason why I was sexually abused as a girl.

    BUT I do hold to the fact that no matter what happens to you, there can be a positive outcome with the right attitude and response. The outcome of that abuse is that I am very empathetic to other people’s emotional pain, I understand a lot of ‘girls’ who are struggling because of their life experiences.

    I have also learned how to endure hard things, to sit through the pain, and to know that the result can be a better understanding of yourself and others.

    Finding, grasping and hold onto the positive you find is a negative situation is important for good mental health, and your ability to make the best of the life you have.

    Thanks for reminding me…

  • Alison

    That Marisa…she is a wise one and clearly, you’re a smart cookie too. It’s quite a balancing act to acknowledge and feel your feelings while still being grateful for what you have and who you are, and it can take a lot to find and keep your mo when “no” comes along. So sorry it was a disappointing week and hoping that better “yeses” come your way soon.

  • Nostalgia

    Well said Betz.

  • Betz White

    Hi Janet, Thanks for your insightful comment. You sound like a very strong woman!
    Betz

  • Anonymous

    So what, some big stupid company couldn’t see your grace,beauty and talent? Count yourself the better! You inspire me with your gumption,motherliness, message of goodness toward the planet and challenge to be the best we can be for ourselves and humanity. The best will come forth. Colleen Carroll

  • Betz White

    Hi Colleen!
    Thanks for the visit. No, it wasn’t a big company, something much more dear to my heart. I appreciate your comment.
    Betz

  • Fun Mama - Deanna

    I’ve never been a fan of “everything happens for a reason” either. Sometimes it seems like a big fat excuse for people to walk all over you and attribute it to your growth. And sometimes things just suck (like Janet McKinney said). I do think though that we can look beyond the sucky things and move forward and sometimes we can find the silver lining in those things if there’s one to be had.

  • Expats Again

    New to your post and just wanted to add the saying, “Flowers grow in valleys, not on mountain tops.” In other words, it’s during the valleys that we endure hardship, but grow. However, having said that, I sure wish life had more mountaintops! Hang in there. I love your blog.

  • house on hill road

    oh betz, i hope things look up for you this week!

  • Cloth Diapers are cuter!

    Staying positive, no matter what, makes all the difference in life. We can survive nearly anything if we are grateful for what we do have.

  • amelia

    What is intellectual property theft? Is it the stealing of ideas not yet copyrighted? Thoughts published by someone else?

  • Betz White

    Amelia,
    Intellectual property rights violations can include things like unauthorized use of copyrighted imagery, plagiarism, copyright infringement, etc. Basically submitting someone else’s work as one’s own, or stealing.

  • CrimsonBruin

    Thanks for the reminder! We all have those days… or weeks… Just think of all the wonderful things you’ve done and of those of us who would love to be in your shoes! :)

  • 16 windows

    Here is to a much better week for you! I appreciate your ability to stay positive even after a yuck week:)

  • The Hobbit

    Being one of your older readers I can say .I know what you’re going through.When you’re smart creative and on the right track you often wonder why you need to be taught a lesson in life. Judging from the replies I’d say it’s a reminder that you’re not in this alone.Chin up Tomorrow will come no matter what.
    P.S I met you once and was so excited I could hardly speak.

  • Crafty Mermaid

    Just wanted to say that I hope things pick up for you. Thanks for sharing your posts and inspirations.

  • bb

    That was one very not-so-very-good week. So sorry. I do thank you, in light of all your stress, for being such a kind, talented and generous instructor with us (your group 2) students. You remain a highlight in my week. Thanks for sharing your creative talents with us! And especially when your giving had to come from deep down with all that was going on in your camp.

    Two weeks ago, I had a girlfriend die (the third one in so many years) and it hasn’t gotten easier. But what I have learned is how I have changed through and from it all. Kind of cracks the facade. I agree with you, these are the events in life that make us who we are.

    People are people…..who can figure them out? Although, we can’t do anything about much of what happens “to” us, it is completely our choice how we react to those things. You are talented, accomplished and you are pushing ahead so just roll right over these bumps and keep moving forward!

  • pinksuedeshoe

    I had a bunch of rough experiences as a child through teenager. Looking back, the “reason” that we are given these challenges in our lives is to be able to help others we come in contact with. Those experiences that we live through, may one day help someone we love, someone we barely know, or a total internet stranger deal with a similarly (or totally unrelated) issue. We have hard things in our lives to teach us empathy and love for our fellow men.

  • Diana

    Oh, I hope you feel better soon (says the woman who sat in the parking lot in the dark with 5 year old last night, waiting for the tow truck!).

    Weeks like that just suck….and I think your already on the right track for feeling better. Thank you for the reminder to count my many blessings too!

  • Sojourner Design

    Betz,

    Those were lovely photos; thank you.

    I think having an overall attitude of being grateful for our blessings, even when not all is going well, is a lifesaver emotionally as well as being a mark of good character.

    Diane

  • Marisa and Creative Thursday

    hi sweet Betz ~ thinking of you.

  • The Vineyard Lady

    Thank you for your wise and heartfelt post. I completely agree with skepticism around the notion that “everything happens for a reason”. It just doesn’t make sense to me.

    A friend once told me, and it makes me laugh every time: “Some days we are the statues, some days we are pigeons”.

    I hope this week is a better one for you!

    So inspired by your beautiful work,
    Andrea.

  • cartside

    The only thing we can do is hold on to our blessings. Loss doesn’t get easier, but clinging to the positives keeps us going until the darkest of shadow has passed. Hoping you’ll feel better soon.

  • Gail

    Sorry you had a rubbish week Betz, I hope things get better for you soon.

  • Chicago Sarah

    Dear, dear Betz, wishing you many better days ahead. I don’t know what happened but I’m so sorry for the stress/pain/etc you went through. Personally, I think you are amazing and great. *hugs*

  • Marianne

    I also feel down these past few months. Your post is a great help. Thanks a lot.

    God speed!

  • Anonymous

    Well, I dont’ know why crummy things happen, but I do know that love is healing. I also believe we can love people we have never met, may never meet, and probably will never know. I am glad you have put it out there that you are feeling low – so we can all send you some love!

    Katie

  • Ann Tatum

    No, you’re not in this alone. I had a similar post on my blog yesterday & my friend who has cancer let me post an email she wrote. I know the ‘bad’ stuff in my life wasn’t fun & I wouldn’t want to go through it again or wish it on anyone else, but it has made me a better and stronger person and allowed me to help others.

  • Lisa at Lil Fish Studios

    Aw. Some of those weeks are like that. They seem to come from nowhere, kick you in the pants, and run away. Wishing you better days.

  • cindygert

    Betz,

    Thanks for your post and keeping it real. It is great advice. Here is another bloggy hug!! Wishing you a better week this week!

    Cindy

    ps. I am very excited for what you have been able to do so far. Help keeps me going in my pursuits!!!

  • Rachel Carlson

    HUGE warm hugs betz! IF it helps, i’ve been pouring over TWO of your books recently, studying, sketching, creating and trying to live up to your standards in my own little special way. YOU inspire me. YOU motivate me. YOU make me excited about the next day and what i’m working on. cheers to YOU. thanks for the reminder. chin up, shoulders back and press on! ♥ rachel

  • Esther from Québec

    It was a long time since I came to your blog…but to read your post today reminds me a lot in my life…
    My mom passed away at the end of June and my true love left me three weeks later(after 5 years) for some reasons I consider really valuable and understandable but heartbreaking for me… I’ve learned a word called “resilience”, I try to think everyday about all those good things of life surrounding me still, I know that I’ll be “handle with care” for many months to come, but I strongly believe in life… I strongly believe that something, someone, someday, will come and I want to be ready, alive and well, when it’ll be THE day !
    Thanks a lot for your inspiring post !
    You will excuse my bad English, I’m French speaking…

  • Lisa Mummy Wallig

    You are an amazing woman surrounded by lots of love! While the week may sting, you have let the pain wash over you with your usual grace. Snuggle in the collective warmth of everyone who loves you, knowing that this too shall pass.

    I’m usually a very positive, upbeat person, but I have had a few momentary blips that have made me temporarily lose faith (other than serious illness of family and friends), I try to find the silver lining (i.e. leaving the great job because I discovered I was working for an unethical manager, forcing me to a Whistleblower and report his shady actions; not marrying the pathological narcissist who proposed on Valentine’s day, then broke up with me on my birthday, saying the proposal was a joke – nice guy, huh? Probably on his 8th divorce about now…I figure I dodged a bullet!)

    I cherish the results – meeting and marrying my absolute soulmate, and working in a job I truly enjoy, working with an ethical manager. It makes going through the temporary pain worth it, because I have come out on the other side, am a better person for the experiences, and am living a wonderful life.

  • Cynthia Rae

    Thanks for your honesty, Betz. Me included, I’m sure that you helped many people who are walking in the valleys right now just by writing your post. It is important to do the things you love when your hurt even though it can be a challenge to look on the bright side. For me, I just finger through my two amazing books by Betz White and look at my stack of vintage bed sheets and felted sweaters just waiting to transform into their new, better and revised “selves”. You’re such a bright person, Betz, and I couldn’t agree with your post more. Thankfully, “this to shall pass…” Very best to you-

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