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  • Lori Micheli

It's a Wonderful Life

Happy New Year! As I look back on 2019, I reflect on all the things that I am grateful for. On, December 19, the second anniversary of my bone marrow transplant, everything is looking great. Knock on wood. It is a new year where I reflect on what I accomplished as well as how I can be better. I also look ahead at all the possibilities the future will bring. During the holidays I try to get through as many Christmas movies as I can. The one that struck me this season, though I’ve seen it a dozen times, is It’s a Wonderful Life. As I was watching the movie, I realized how my life mirrored the story. I'm sure most people feel this way and why it is so relatable.

Before I was diagnosed with cancer I was living from a place of anger and resentment. I mentioned this in an earlier post. Those negative voices in my head would not leave me alone, they would not let up. What if I did better in school? Would I have had a better career? What if I were skinnier? Would people like me more. It went on and on. It was a series of self-abuse, day in and day out. George Bailey had dreams of going away to college, traveling the world and becoming an architect but something always seemed to be pulling him in a different direction. God noticed that George was struggling and sent an angel in training to guide him back onto the right path. As George is about to end his life by jumping off a bridge Clarence jumps in instead. Clarence shows George what life would be like without him and finds that the world is a much darker place. I too was in a very dark place and I did not know how to find my way out of the darkness. I didn't want to die but I thought if God gave me a do-over I might take it. Clarence was my cancer. Weird to say but without cancer, I would have stayed in the dark. Clarence (cancer) showed me the way back. Back to a lovely husband, two great kids, really great kids. Supportive friends and family. My perspective shifted. I was mentally trained to see the negative but Clarence showed me how to change my perspective and look at things differently. I was taught forgiveness, gratefulness, prayer, meditation, exercise, and love. My body healed because I didn't want to miss out on anything. I wanted to live again. Bring me back, I want to live again.

I think about 2020. Luke will be in college soon, Nicole is having a great start to high school. Bob will start a new job and I want to go back to work. Not just any work, my dream job. Ironically, I get an email from a past employer about a job. I can't believe it, I read the job description and start jumping for joy. This is it, this is my dream job. Could this really be happening? I have a big smile on my face for a week. I get a call from the recruiter to inform me that I will not be moving forward in the interview process because he is looking for a bit more. As you can imagine, complete devastation. I cried and cried some more. I told my friends what happened and they started giving me my own advice. It wasn't meant to be, there is a better plan for you. Deep down I knew they were right but I was still really sad. I had an Aha! That company is Mr. Potter. The one who promises George Bailey an amazing career with lots of money and travel expenses but it is a distraction from his true purpose. George's purpose is to help people have their dreams. Maybe my purpose is to share my story so people can believe they can heal to create their own dreams? I'm going with it.

We all know how It's a Wonderful Life ends. The town finds out George is in trouble and comes together to help him. A friend of mine recently told me that God either blocks us or blesses us in an opportunity. I have faith this opportunity was blocked to confirm that it is not the direction God wanted for me. There is something bigger, better. I have faith and return to my wonderful life. That a boy Clarence ;)

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