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I’m enough

“Things get worse before they get better”

Sometimes in life we forget that we have to go through the trials in order to face the next thing coming at us.
You can’t just say you ran a 10K without the medal to prove it.
You have to go through the muddy waters to find the joy in the clear water.

The perspective that hard times happen for a reason, that they allow our persistence to become stronger, is a hard perspective to swallow.
But as someone who’s been through the trenches it’s hard for me not to see the good in what its done for me and for the people around me.
I haven’t always been this way though. I want to bring you back to a dark moment, a moment I was in my ‘worse’ and ‘better’ was not a thought I could ever for-see happening for me.

Cooper had been sick with not only one cancer, but two for around three months. At this point it was December, Cooper’s birthday is in December and it would be the last birthday we got with him on this earth. Soon after celebrations ended he returned to the hospital, his fever wasn’t gone so that meant back to the hospital they went. Throughout the month of December I remember feeling an overwhelming sense of fear, it was like I knew what was coming but didn’t want to trust what God was preparing me for. Instead, I chose fear. And I’ll admit that every time, I choose it. I make the decision to believe the liar instead of the truth.

I remember so many nights attempting to watch Netflix trying to numb my feelings just like an alcoholic in a bar. I laid there under my covers, Netflix on, and prayed it wouldn’t happen. What wouldn’t happen you ask? The tears. I prayed the tears would not come, I prayed for a night where I just went to sleep, Netflix numbing my reality. That rarely came true. Most nights I cried silently under those sheets scared of the unknown, but the ironic thing was, I knew what was about to happen, God had already prepared me in advanced. But I was ignoring him.

In December, amidst a deep cry under my sheets I stopped. I felt something come over me, it told me to sit up, like a teacher lecturing you in class. I then heard Jesus speak over me that he would not be healing Cooper on earth. I froze. What? No, that’s definitely not the Lord speaking to me. He would FOR SURE be telling me Cooper would be healed.
Well, he was, he was just preparing me for the next part of the story.

See, God gives us what we need.
He knew my heart could not handle Coopers last breath on this earth.
So he prepared his daughter by telling her.
But I still had a hard time with Coopers last breath because for four months I lived in denial with the words the Lord spoke over me.
I denied his words in hopes that my worldly acts could cure Cooper and save him, when I was already given the truth.
The truth was, Cooper would die.
But he would be healed.

If you follow me on Instagram I shared a couple days ago about how I have been working through some deep shame and guilt in therapy lately. A lot of the guilt I carry is from Coopers death, feeling I did not do enough, I was not enough for him, that I could have done more. Throughout our work together my therapist and I have discovered a deep truth in the midst of all the guilt I was feeling.

I COULD NOT HAVE SAVED COOPERS LIFE.

I know, you’re probably like, “WELL DUH KASSIDY!”
But it’s not that simple when you’re a sibling of a child with cancer and you KNOW the answer to all current family problems is to SAVE YOUR BROTHERS LIFE.
No like really. If there was family friction, I would think, “If only I could cure Coopers cancer, then this wouldn’t be happening.” If I was at home lonely, “If I find the cure for cancer, loneliness ends!”
{If only naive little Kassidy knew, cancer and loneliness are only distant cousins, loneliness is so much bigger than that disease.}
But going back to what my therapist and I discovered, I could not have saved Coopers life.
In a perfect world of 2015, I would have been Coopers bone marrow transplant donor, I would have went through the transplant process and I would have been a minor part of Coopers journey to becoming cancer free.
But 2015 was not a perfect year, and even if I had been the perfect match for Cooper, I STILL WOULD NOT HAVE SAVED HIS LIFE.
Wanna know why? Because before I would have even gotten the chance to sit in a transplant room, Cooper would not achieve remission from both cancers, he would instead lay in bed for 50 days with a fever. While he laid there, an infection brewed in his system. An infection so bad that it could not be cured. Cooper had the perfect trifecta of problems that would ultimately lead to him dying, WITH OR WITHOUT MY BONE MARROW.

Do you know that I have carried the guilt of not being Coopers match for his bone marrow transplant from the day I heard the news? Do you know that when I tell myself ‘I am not enough’ it comes from a place of not being enough to save my brothers life. Yet, BIOLOGICALLY I WOULD HAVE NEVER BEEN ENOUGH TO SAVE HIS LIFE! GOD DID NOT INTEND FOR ME TO BE THE GIRL WHO SAVED HER BROTHERS LIFE! HE JUST DIDN’T! He had other plans for me all along.
Yet I’ve sat here, for four years, telling myself, “Kassidy you will never be enough, because you weren’t enough to save a life.”

When I realized that God’s plan was never for me to be the girl who saved her brothers life, it was like a giant boulder was removed from my shoulders. This whole time I had given myself an expectation that I was the one who needed to save his life.
ME.
KASSIDY LYNNE OWEN.
With zero medical knowledge, no doctorate.
AND NO BIOLOGICAL MAGIC TO SAVE HIS LIFE.
I could have never saved Coopers life.

Yet, I lived with the expectation everyday that I NEEDED to do that.
And when I didn’t do that, I changed that self talk to telling myself that I never did enough to even try to save his life.
So Cooper dying, yeah, that was my fault.

Friends, It’s funny how we blame so much of our trauma on what happened to us without ever taking a moment to turn the mirror around and look straight into it.
In this situation, I created a lot of my own trauma.
I was the one who gave myself the expectation to save his life.
I was the one telling myself I was not enough because I did not save his life.
It was me, every single day.
Stepping back that day in therapy I realized something, this particular trauma, this feeling of guilt, was my own doing.
But that’s okay because I forgive myself.

I forgive myself for setting unrealistic expectations. I forgive myself for choosing to not believe the words God spoke to me, and trusting what path he had laid out for Cooper. I forgive myself for every single time I told myself, ‘it is your fault Cooper died, you did not do enough.” And I forgive myself for the constant self hate.

It’s a hard decision to forgive yourself when you realize you’ve been your own enemy the whole time.

I was never enough to save Coopers life.
But I was not created to save Coopers life.
That was not the job God intended for me.
So I am going to stop telling myself I am not enough, because I am more than enough in my own space. In the space God created for Kassidy. In the space he knew I would thrive in.

And you are more than enough in your space.
You deserve all the space.
So today, I challenge you to free yourself of the guilt you carry and begin to tell yourself your enough.
You deserve the space.

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2 Comments

  1. August 27, 2019 / 7:06 am

    Hola! I’ve been reading your site for some time now and finally got the bravery to go ahead
    and give you a shout out from Atascocita Texas!

    Just wanted to tell you keep up the good work!

    • Kassidyowen
      Author
      August 27, 2019 / 4:07 pm

      Wow! Thank you so much for reaching out! I truly am blessed to have you reading my work, and hope you continue to follow along the journey! <3 lots of love from Florida!

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