Ever wonder why bad things happen to good people? It’s a common question that I am asked especially when there are so many horrific situations that occur everyday in our world. I am going to share with some some personal experiences from my life that have made me wonder this questions, as well as how do I prefer to deal with this question.
For the last two weeks, I have been going to the hospital and recovery center for hours just about every day supporting my boyfriend. His father had a very serious spinal surgery and so we have been visiting him as much as possible to make sure he is getting proper care, as well as keeping him company. On top of that, I have been cleaning for him, cooking, doing his laundry, shopping for him and other chores because he is too busy between work and caring extra for his father.
Prior to this, his mother sadly passed away over 7 months ago. She was a lovely woman that I grew close to. Especially, since I have not had parents since I was 13, she was very special to me. But, of course the pain for my boyfriend is much worse. She was his best friend, so he is still in mourning and very sad. So, I have been spending hours each week consoling him, walking with him, attending appointments with him, helping him with picking out new his glasses and new clothes, talking, and making sure there is some normalcy in his life, as well as helping him with his household chores.
I have put aside some of my own goals and chores to be there for him because I know he needs the support to heal better and of course I care deeply for this stranger that I met and have grown so close to over 2 and a half years ago. 🙂
On top of all that. I spend my time as a life coaching, caring and guiding my clients, loving, raising and caring for my beautiful, kind and super smart daughters as a single mom, handing out cupcakes, toothbrushes and food to the homeless, run a foster kid Christmas drive, do other volunteer work, and consistently write inspirational messages all over the internet in hopes that people feel better by reading them. I truly value being there for others.
I have devoted my life to giving to others and have been doing so for much of my teen and adult life. Not all of it, but much of it. Of course, I have made some bad mistakes along the way and was no always so helpful. But, the majority of my life, I have desired to help others because I know what it is like to not have anyone there for you. It’s so challenging when you are lost and all alone. So, I do whatever I can to be there when I am able.
So when bad things happen to me and other kind-hearted people that I know, I often wonder “Why?” Why are bad things happening when I am constantly giving?
Here are some examples:
On Valentines night, my car was stolen by homeless drug users. When it was recovered, it was obvious they ruined it. So I was preparing it to trade it in since I can no longer drive it. But what happens next? I leave my car in a train station parking lot and someone breaks the driver’s side window and the battery is dead — probably from them leaving the door open. So, the car can not be used until a window repair person and I can meet there to repair the car.
Then last month, somehow my outside drain became clogged and before I realized it — my entire basement was flooded several inches. And this was my storage room — so I am sure you can imagine that there was a lot of damage to some of my belongings.
These examples are just a few of things that happen while I am trying to help other people. Yet, when I need help, no one is there and if they are they want something they should not want – like what happened to me a few years ago…
My life was amazing. It was the end of summer and I just returned from two months in Myrtle Beach. My business was where I was most satisfied. My girls were happy and healthy. Then, horror happened. Someone was harassing me at my house and so I needed to call 911 for help. When the cop arrived, he removed the person, but then the cop came in my house and told me to get naked. That night was horrible. I am not going to get into this story right now — but to make a long story short, he went to jail and is no longer a cop.
These are just some of my stories and there are many more to tell. But, there are thousands upon thousands of stories like this from all around the world too. There is horrible abuse, killings, robberies, vandalism, sudden deaths, and so many other terrible things that happen to some very good people — people who are much nicer and kinder than I ever could be.
So, why? Why do bad things happen to good people? There are so many theories and I have played with so many of them. But, I think we will never really know. I tend to think it’s because when you are kind and your heart is open, you are more vulnerable. That vulnerability is sensed and taken advantage of. But, perhaps there is more to the reason. I think what is more important than figuring out why is knowing how to move forward after bad things happen.
Keeping your focus on “Why” simply keeps you giving attention and energy to the bad experience. There is a short time for being curious as to why. But, don’t live there. Mostly focus on the healing, thriving and moving forward. Give power back to the good, kindness and love – not to the bad things. Sometimes we focus on the why instead of taking action. We drown in the figuring out and the reasons. Unfortunately, the why is often never truly known. On an individual basis it can become known. Even if you are very religious, you don’t truly understand the overall “Why do bad things happen to good people.”
Instead of “Why”, ask yourself “How?” — How can I heal? How can I make sure my heart remains open? How can I be more aware of my surroundings, without being scared so I can protect myself? How can I smile again? How can I trust again?
Instead of “Why?, ask yourself, “What?” — What can I do to make other people feel better? What can I do to overcome this fear? What can I do to move forward? What can I do to love again?
What I like to do is do something good. So, I am creating a new Campaign #BeKind31. It about being kind 31 days a month! I know, I know, not every month has 31 days. So click the #BeKind31 logo here to sign up for my newsletter to learn more. Join me in fighting badness with kindness. 🙂
The amazing this about life is you have a choice. When bad things happen, you can stay in that bad experience in your mind and emotions or you can move forward and make your life better. You can choose to forgive or choose to resent them. You can choose to heal or stay in your pain. You can choose to hate or to love. The choice is up to you. There is support for you for whatever choice you move with. Some people stay stagnant and go numb. But, in my opinion, this is also still choosing to allow the bad experience to have power over you. I hope you choose to move forward, love and thrive. If you do, as you already know, I am willing to walk with you.
How about you? What are your thoughts on this topic?
Much love, Joanne Cipressi