When my good friend Stephanie told me to write a blog for her wonderful new website I was honored to do so, but then I thought to myself hmmmmm what shall I write about?!
I suppose I could write about my Facebook group Survivors Malta that I had co-founded together with my teenage son Jacob four years ago when he was finally discharged from hospital after surviving a near fatal illness leaving him disabled; a support group that we set up so as to reach out to other families who had survived a trauma as my family had done. Back then we found that there was a missing link in moral support on the long hard road to recovery. On discharge the trauma is far from over and the Survivors are not just those who are inflicted, but the loved ones around the bed too!!! We created a place to go for families still facing their battles whatever they may be so as to find courage and inspiration through the stories and experiences shared by other Survivors.
Or I could write about taking the next step forward in Survivors Malta becoming an NGO funding and initiating projects to boost the morale of Survivor families; projects such as Reunited Pet Cabin, Youths With Challenges – Stepping Stones, Jacob’s Coffee Run and more in the pipeline; all of which may be found on Facebook and on our website www.titaniumman.com.mt
Perhaps I could talk about my book Jacob – My Titanium Man that I had written telling the story of my son. It was a story that had to be told and I promised my son that I would tell it. The story of a boy who beat all odds and survived and of how we, as a family changed a negative into a positive to help other Survivor families!
I could even write about our latest endeavour. My son’s dream of one day owning his own coffee shop and how as his mother I am determined to make that dream come true. In fact Jacob’s Brew – Pay It forward is currently in the making and should be opening its doors in the coming months. It will be a coffee shop with a difference as it will be Malta’s very first Social Enterprise giving back to the community (in particular to families facing trauma) as we move our support from the virtual world into the real world … another step forward in the right direction!!
I have written countless times about all of the above with a passion and speak about them with equal enthusiasm as I know that there is always someone somewhere out there that needs to be motivated and inspired. Once upon a time that person was me. It still is actually!! In fact I would say that writing has helped me to heal and if my words can help at least one family take the next step forward; if my words can do that then my work is done!!
Which brings me back to my blog. I have chosen to write about EMPATHY!!! It is a word that sometimes; more often than not unfortunately; gets confused with SYMPATHY. Pity drags us down and holds us back from reaching our potential to lead a fulfilling life. Whereas being understood by others help’s us to move forward and to achieve our goals. I like to use the term “To walk in my shoes!!” So do take the time to care. Be that shoulder to cry on. Be that listening ear. Speak those reassuring words. It does make a difference and doesn’t cost anything yet it could be the most valuable gift that you have ever given!!
My family chose to share our experience to show others that there is life and hope after trauma. My son is living proof of that!! Looking back it’s the best choice that we ever made. I believe a photo can speak a thousand words. The smile upon his face says it all.