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June 26, 2022

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AmandaAugust 2, 2018

Leah, I can so relate to your comment, having recently experienced the loss of a loved one myself. Early on I encouraged my children to look for the blessings and beauty around us because there is always beauty and blessings to be found if we look for them. Almost from day one I felt that how I deal with this loss is up to me. I could either let it destroy me and my faith or I could let it strengthen my faith and shape and mold me into what God wants me to be. I can't change what happened, but I can choose to face it with courage, determination, hope, and faith - among other things. I haven't known what to call it I just know it is real. I tell people that the strength I feel doesn't come from me. I am not capable of doing this on my own. It is a daily (sometimes hourly) choice to put my trust in God that He can and will lead me through, and together I will survive and even thrive.

JuliannaAugust 1, 2018

Thank you for contributing Leah. You expressed how I feel also. I will add ruthless optimism and steely fortitude to my vocabulary going forward.

LeahAugust 1, 2018

I read this with interest and felt a little 'jarred' when you wrote that you'd lived a life (so far) without tragic levels of adversity. It caused me to read the article again and think for a while - which is a good thing! I like your term "ruthless optimism". Having been through some tragedies myself, the term I use for me is "steely fortitude". Some observers have commented on my peaceful, even cheery demeanor in the days following a painful loss. Part of it is shock; much of it is the comfort of the Spirit. Also key to my calm is trust in Heavenly Father. I know we will be okay. As the shock wears off, I do grieve and mourn and sob out my sorrows to Heavenly Father. It actually IS hard work to survive the death of a loved one. They say 'what doesn't kill you makes you stronger', but, in truth, it is what you do to survive that makes you stronger: the pressing on, the doing of daily activities of life even when you feel like dying yourself. It's the keeping up of cheerful "small talk" so you don't invite all others into your sorrow randomly. Without fail, Heavenly Father sends comfort and strengthens me. There is the Source of "ruthless (unfailing) optimism. He is the strength others think they see in me.

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