We can choose to ascribe meaning to what happened to us, even after the fact. We do that by taking pride in the people we have become. You have gained new skills out of your hardship. You know things about yourself now that you would never have known if you had not been put to the test. And it is not unusual, in my experience, for the skills and confidence forged in the fire of trauma to become the things about ourselves that give us the most pride.
You would not have chosen to get better and smarter and stronger in this way. But this thing happened to you — and you are better and smarter and stronger for it.
— Alicia Salzer, Back to Life, p. 30