The Beautiful Tragedy

You know, I’m going to be honest with you and tell you that while I have learned lots of amazing things through the happy times in life, I have learned my deepest lessons through events and situations which many would consider a complete tragedy.

Those days where we lose massive chunks of ourselves often of times end up being the times where you find out who you are after your darkest hour. Is there resilience…or will you just lay down and die?

To me, even though I thought I wasn’t going to make it…there was a little spark of resilience that kept me up.

I know there are a lot of people hurting out there right now for one reason or another. And trust me, I know that a lot of this pain should be probably be avoided.

I believe deep down that people are genuinely good, however, and this is a pretty big however…I think that the direction our society (American…I speak to what I know) has taken us in a direction that is really isn’t what I think where we need to be. I think we are a whole lot better than what is going on right now. We need to be better than this. We need heroes.

We carry with us baggage, broken pieces of furniture, and shattered lamps of our lives. But the thing about life is that it is going to life you no matter what. So if we hoard all these materials…we in turn become a human, made of pieces, instead of someone who is strong and whole. We are a walking broken puzzle.


What changed my life was realizing that there was a distinction between the past, the present, and the future…and that in fact the past and the future do not exist.

All you have is right now.

I know we have all heard it a million times…but it really is true. What changes everything is when you realize that everything that has happened to you up until this point is just part of a story.

Your life’s story…and that it is a tale to be told…not something to hinder you from writing on fresh pages. Because when you let your past define your present, you aren’t writing on fresh white sheets, you are writing on crumpled up pieces of paper that have ink smeared all over them.

Does that visual make sense?

You have to take out the trash…and pull out fresh white sheets to create on.

Your finest moment is the one in which you stand up to fear, decide to continue moving, and have faith in yourself as being everything you need in order to get through the worst of times.

You gain experience and courage when you can count on yourself to get through whatever life throws at you. Understand that the past is the past. No matter how horrible or colorful, it is the past.

Take out the trash.

Evan Sanders

The Better Man Project

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  • gatesitter
    December 22, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    Very well written, creates a nice visual one can use to let go of the baggage. A clean white sheet of paper, waiting each morning for us to write the next page of our life.

  • jmgoyder
    December 22, 2012 at 9:19 pm

    This is an absolutely beautiful post – thank you.

  • dsmythjr
    December 22, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    Enjoyed reading that…. Thank you!

  • Patty
    December 22, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    Thank you!
    My past are stories that I need to let go to write new ones, better ones.

  • The Water Bearer
    December 23, 2012 at 12:45 am

    So True…Great post! Blessings to you!

  • Ness
    December 23, 2012 at 3:50 am

    What happened to us in the past – is not who we are. But we cling on to past hurts, subconsciously acting out the same hurtful scenarios – into the future.

    The future is not here yet. The Now is, this is what will define our future. And the Future will become our past, no longer here and so no longer relevant to how we live this moment.

    We fail to live from the Truth… us, who we REALLY are. People are afraid – of Life.

  • David
    December 23, 2012 at 5:58 am

    A fellow decided to walk the Appalachian Trail, 2200 miles in length. His wife followed along in a motor home with supplies, one of which were shoes. As the hiker wore out a pair his wife would give him a new pair. Instead of throwing away the worn out shoes the man would knot them together and sling them around his neck. 1/2 way through the journey he could barely stand erect due to the weight of worn out shoes. Why did he not throw them away? We do that when clinging to the past, carrying resentments, past mistakes and sorrow around our heart just like the hiker carried worn shoes. Free your heart and mind this very moment and remove the past, which can not be changed, from your thoughts! Walk upright this day allowing God’s grace to fill your heart and mind…Remove the shoes from your neck and burn them; the rising smoke healing your wounds…………D. Edwin Burbee

  • Lipstick and Chaos
    December 23, 2012 at 7:39 am

    My best writing and musings are when my heart and soul are the most sorrowful. The truth you stated is that the “past is the past” and letting go is necessary to move forward. I think that is the hardest thing to learn and overcome. Well said!

  • mrmattpieroni
    December 23, 2012 at 7:48 am

    Well put and, sadly, not enough people live their daily lives with this mentality. I teach my students that all we can control if the Now.

    “What if the world blows up on 12/12/12?”
    We can’t change it so live today like it could.

    Seeing the progression in maturity of my 7th graders over the first half of the school year has been amazing. Check it out if you have a second over this holiday break.

    Great post,
    Matt Pieroni

  • bumelephantproductions
    December 23, 2012 at 9:25 am

    Reblogged this on Bozo With a Blog.

  • deanasrdic
    December 23, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Cheers to using a Serbian quote… coming from one! Well written and lovely to read. All the best for the holidays.

  • Rene Yoshi
    December 23, 2012 at 11:18 am

    Excellent! The first part of your post reminded me of a quote by Amy Bloom, an American writer, who said, “Events reveal people’s characters; they don’t determine them.”

    But I also loved your analogy of writing our lives on fresh white pages instead of either not seeking to be better by leaving our pages crumpled up in the trash or by taking the crumpled pages from the garbage and trying to write on them and make excuses. Yes, we may have to deal with the consequences of unwise choices, but we do not have to allow them to hold us captive and hinder us from becoming that better man or woman. Thank you, Evan!

  • tornadoday
    December 23, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    The absolutely worst thing to happen to us can be the absolute best thing to happen to us. It’s all a matter of when you wish to start. 🙂 Love this, Ethan. ~ Always, Bobbie

  • ryan
    December 23, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    Thank you… Really enlighting

  • lynnwyvill
    December 29, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Love the visual of trying to write on crumpled pieces of paper. Living in the present can be one of the most difficult things to do. Thanks for the post!