Amy Rees Anderson

Be thankful for the bad things in life

“Be thankful for the bad things in life.  They open your eyes to see the good things you weren’t paying attention to before.”

A story about something that happened this weekend will help explain why I started today with that quote.

Friday night my husband and I were invited to watch the BYU Football game in the President’s box. We were excited going into it because neither of us has gone to watch a football game at BYU in years and years.  Plus they were going to be playing Utah State University so we knew it would be a good rivalry of school spirit to have two Utah schools playing together.  But we also felt confident that BYU would be the victory of the game because USU had not won a home game against BYU in over 30 years.  Plus BYU was undefeated this season and the quarterback of BYU, Taysom Hill, was a Heisman Trophy hopeful.  The fans screamed in excitement.  After all, what could possibly go wrong?

A leg fracture for Taysom Hill, that was what went wrong.  During the football game the quarterback was tackled and the other player came down on his leg, fracturing it. As they carried him to the side of the field the cameras zoomed in closely on Taysom to show him laying down on his back with his hands covering both eyes.  He was clearly devastated.  The fans were also devastated.  Then the news came that Taysom had a fractured leg and was going to have to have surgery and would be out for the rest of the season.  What a sad blow for both that young man and for all the devoted fans.  The game ended in a very sad loss for BYU.

“When something bad happens you have three choices. You can either let it define you. Let it destroy you. Or let it strengthen you.”

On the drive home I couldn’t help but reflect on how quickly life had changed for so many people in attendance that night.  Everyone thought they knew the plan for the future – BYU would win, Taysom Hill would possibly win the Heisman Trophy, and fans would celebrate an amazing season of football.  Just a few short hours later nothing had worked out the way anyone had planned.  Yet I couldn’t help but be reminded of  the time my own daughter, who had been so talented at basketball and who was so full of promise, had torn her own ACL, not just once, but twice, which resulted in her doctor letting her know that basketball was no longer an option for her.  It was devastating at the time, but that injury is what led to my daughter getting involved in leadership groups and helped her to recognize a myriad of other talents she possessed.  I am confident that if it hadn’t been for her injury she may have never explored these other talents as she now has.

I believe there are reasons for things that happen in our lives and I believe if we handle them with a positive attitude and have faith in the future that things will turn out as they should.  Yes we should be grateful for the bad things in life. As much as they may be painful, they will open our eyes to see the good things we weren’t paying attention to before.

Have an AMAZING week ahead.


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