When I was younger, I viewed failure as an opportunity. Jobs; relationships; even writing—If it didn’t work the first time, just try again.
I got to be pretty good at trying again.
And I think this is a common trope in our society, too:
“Failure is never permanent.”
“You don’t fail until you give up.”
I see these things now, though, and I get angry. Because I feel like our society has gotten so hung up on the “everyone gets a happy ending” mentality that they forget some people don’t.
Some failures are permanent.
Some things that are missing aren’t replaceable.
Some endings break you.
And these are things we need to talk about. Because if you don’t acknowledge the full spectrum of possibilities, you also don’t prepare people to get through them.
You end up with a generation of people who are resilient enough to deal with a flat tire, but who don’t know how to handle true trauma or death.
And as so many of us are now aware, some stories simply don’t have happy endings.
We need to talk about that.
Words by E. Miranda Hernandez (© 2021)
These storybook-themed stickers help to acknowledge the reality to be experienced in this messy, beautiful life.
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Some stories simply don’t have happy endings (shareable graphics)