I was fortunate to find this talk posted yesterday on the TED website:
I feel the need to add a few things after watching this:
While it is inspirational to see how a young woman like this has overcome such immense obstacles, I think it's worth mentioning that western society seems to think that the main goal is to fight through life, to laugh at difficulties and to charge through no matter what. Yes, this is important. Don't give up and all that.
However, I think it's also important to note that we should not expect that we should have to face the world on all our own. I've been doing a lot of thinking recently about the will to live, and the way that we face the darkness in our lives. Lonely people, or rather, people who choose to be alone, have a tougher time choosing life. This woman had a wonderful circle of people around her that supported her through it all... and therefore, she could choose life.
I am trying my best to reach out to lonely people, not to solve their problems, but to be there to say that I understand that things are difficult. Sometimes, that's all people need to hear... no plans for improvement, no advice to make things better, no blame games... just that yes, we understand. Sometimes, that's enough for people to choose life.
In this fix-it-all world, sometimes the best fix is to share yourself. That's all.