Denial Gratitude vs Genuine Gratitude

During my yatrayoni I have come across a line of thinking in which people are grateful to their illness because it supposedly changed their lives for the better. While I appreciate that they could see that good came with the bad, the concept never sat right with me, and I didn't figure out why until recently. 

This approach does not give credit where the credit is due:

to the individual, not the illness.

This "denial gratitude" denies that a challenge was put forth to the individual, denies the role of the individual in overcoming that challenge, and denies the grief and loss that are inherently part of the process.

I am absolutely NOT grateful to my vulvodynia. Nope, nope, nopity-nope. Wouldn't wish these things on anyone, and certainly not on myself.

But I am endlessly grateful for my response to my illness.

By being brave and persistent and compassionate and curious I have turned this challenge into a great learning experience. I used it as an excuse to cut the bullshit out of my life, and make choices that brought me closer and closer to happiness and meaning.

The illness didn't rescue me, I rescued myself.

Owning my power is a refreshingly strong place to be. By giving the credit to myself I do not fall into the trap of erroneously attributing good to evil, or believing that I am dependent on outside forces to fix my life. 

The fact of the matter is that pelvic pain SUCKS.

Good can come from it, but only if I make the decision that it will.