I missed my Anniversary!


Well, it finally happened. November 22 was my anniversary and I forgot to celebrate it. The day came and went and I didn’t even realize until nearly a week had passed. Whether you believe it or not, it was a good thing. Most of you are likely thinking I was in the doghouse on this oversight, but I’m actually referring to the anniversary date of my hand injury.

Most injury survivors can recall the date of a serious injury and I’m no different, in fact, I recall it was 6:05 pm on November 22, 2008. This date may be a little harder to forget for me than most people because I make a living talking about the events of that day and how a small decision at 6:04 changed my life forever. Looking back over the past seven years the initial pain, angst, and suffering pales in comparison to the positive change and opportunity that resulted from my preventable injury.

Was there a tragic event in your life that has influenced you? Have you processed that event and responded appropriately? Some people have a really difficult time rebounding and some things are very difficult to rebound from. I can’t say “Snap out of it!” or “Time to move on” because I haven’t endured your hardship. An injury or traumatic event may be a pivot point in your life, but it doesn’t have to be a defining point, let it be a refining point. What I can say if you’re able to lift your eyes from your circumstance and able to forgive yourself and the entire scenario, there is a way to move forward. You can’t ignore it though, you have to face it and process it, before you can truly move on. Don’t expect it to be simple or painless, but I can assure you it is worth the effort.

This summer I spoke in Ontario for a mining company and one of the safety officers paid me a huge compliment. He said, “If anyone ever asks me to define what a life altering injury looks like, I will point them to your website”. It’s more than a physical alteration, it’s about changed beliefs and attitudes toward safety. Becoming a speaker has been a life-long ambition that I’ve been blessed to pursue. Over the last five years I’ve had the opportunity to visit many communities within Saskatchewan and more recently across Canada to share a safety message that is also a message of healing and hope. So many of you have been a blessing to me and I am grateful.

So I’d encourage you to push through the tough stuff, take time to reflect and process. Just maybe it’s about time some of you missed your anniversary too.

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