Chelle Summer

Changing the Question

Michelle Rusk

Why? Why? Why?

I have spent quite a bit of my life asking that question probably about everything challenging that's happened to me. And quite honestly it's never gotten me very far other than being a way to set loose my frustration over various events and issues that I've had no control over (other than my own reaction).

Finally, I've come to realize that while I understand the importance of asking the "why" question– especially when you've been faced with a traumatic loss such as a suicide, it's part of the grief journey– I do believe there comes a point that we need to stop asking it.

I will always say that when something happens to you, you need to let all the emotions erupt. Let them flow much like a volcano, otherwise they get tangled inside you and they'll manifest in some other way (usually as a physical illness). It's also part of traveling the full journey of life events, we experience the good, the bad, and the otherwise.

However, asking "why" only gets you so far and it does little propel you forward past the event . Finally, I realized that I needed to start asking, "What do I need to learn from this so I can move forward and past what has happened?"

We might not get the answer the first time we ask– especially because we might think we're listening but really we still caught up in frustration of what's happening– yet we should keep asking because eventually the answers will be there.

Remember, they might not be obvious, they especially might not be what you think they will be. But the answers will come if you keep focused on moving forward. After all, life is one big journey made up of small journeys and it's in those small journeys that we form the building blocks that make us stronger and make life more meaningful.

If we ask the right question. And listen.