Resilience is the ability to work with adversity in such a way that one comes through it unharmed or even better for the experience. Resilience means facing life's difficulties with courage and patience, refusing to give up. It is the quality of character that allows a person to rebound from misfortunes, hardships, and traumas. Resilience is rooted in a tenacity of spirit, a determination to embrace all that makes life worth living even in the face of overwhelming odds. When we have a clear sense of identity and purpose, we are more resilient because we can hold fast to our vision of a better future.
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. (Jeremiah 29:11-13)
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Friday, July 27, 2012
During the wee hours of the morning, Thursday, July 26th, my phone rang. Well, when you're dead to the world and the phone rings you don't really bother to look at Caller ID. You, or at least I do, assume it's a family emergency and you jump for the receiver. That is exactly what I did and I will never forget, though I have prayed often I could, what I heard on the other end. Johnny told me, "You better watch your back. You'll never make it to that birthday party on Sunday" and click, the phone went dead. Well, I was freaking out to say the least. I called some friends from church that live the closest to my house and asked them to please come and get me because I didn't think I was going to be safe. Well, the husband and wife came so that we could take my car to their house. Once to my home away from home we started pondering at 3 a.m. what Johnny's statement meant. Was he going to kill me? And how did he know about my nephew's birthday on Sunday?
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Everyone knows how cold natured I am. I am always wrapping up in a blanket, snuggling up to my preacher's wife to stay warm in church, etc. I even take a blanket to the movie theater with me. So, I told Sandy and my "sis" that I want to be wrapped in a warm fleece blanket from the waist down. And I loved holding hands with those I was closest to so, those close to me are going squeeze my hand tight as they say good-bye. Place my favorite KJV Bible near the coffin but let someone have it when I die. It has tons of notes, quotes, signatures, etc. that I have collected since winning that thing when I was 16. It was my treasure here on Earth and I hope it will become someone's treasure when I'm gone.
Friday, July 13, 2012
Ben's younger sister was with us. Keep in mind we are still all in formals and parading around the downtown area around 10:00 at night. We decide to climb the capitol stairs and Ben's sister trips and falls down the stairs. While getting in the car Ben slams my dress in the door and rips it! I didn't care because I was madly in love with this boy but I started thinking it wasn't a good day.
Six months ago today I had breast surgery to remove a mass. My surgery was done on January, Friday the 13th. It wasn't cancerous but I have Atypical Hyperplasia, a precancerous condition. This week I had my 6-month check-up and all is well! Luck? No, God's hand of providence was upon me.
12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.
13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.
I'm a person with many fears but I also know that God is and has always been in control of my life. He makes no mistakes. My philosophy is: Life is hard but God is good and if He brings you to it He will also bring you through it. Today was just another day...Just as yesterday was Thursday the 12th and tomorrow is Saturday the 14th...today was Friday the 13th. By the way: Any time the 1st day of the month falls on a Sunday you will have a Friday the 13th that month!
Saturday, July 7, 2012
After 2 1/2 years of writer's block I have returned to my blog. Actually, I didn't have writer's block. Life threw me a curve ball and I think I got hit one too many times. But by the grace of God I am able to testify of His steadfast love.
Shall I give you an update? Things probably began to unravel Halloween weekend 2010. I started getting really sick and no one could figure out what was wrong. At first I thought I just acquired a bug that I could't get rid of. Finally, feeling like I was at my wit's end I went to the doctor after Thanksgiving because I was wanting to get better in time for Christmas. Well, it seems I contracted an illness that is very common in third world countries that don't have proper living environments, clean water, etc. I am so OCD when it comes to cleanliness, organizing, schedules and routine that it was hard for me to understand how this "neat freak" could get that illness. Simple: I have a compromised immune system due to an autoimmune disease, cancer treatment for 3 years and an ever ongoing struggle with Anorexia. It seems that my body cannot destroy the small levels of bacteria that come thru well water. So my body reacts as if it has been contaminated.
With that said, I was put on a prescription protocol for the next month. I was taking meds every 6 hours, totaling 23 a day! As a result of the illness I lost 22 pounds, which anyone will know is not good for someone who has an eating disorder and a fear of gaining weight. Much to the doctors, family and friends chagrin, I have not been able to regain any of the weight 18 months later. I have to get retested for the illness every 6 months because they said once you get it you will always test positive in blood tests but they do additional tests to see if the disease is active. I have been treated for it 2 more times since December 2010.
When I took sick I quit writing for Viewpoints and returned to another love, reading. I was consuming 300-500 page books in 2-3 days and that was a wonderful outlet for me as I was dealing with so much.
Many know I love to dance and have been doing ballet for 20+ years. In July 2009 I performed in my final showcase. My boyfriend/dance partner (Brannigan) and I auditioned and were given the coveted lead roles in "The Swan Princess." Brannigan got me thru 2 years of dance while I was undergoing chemo and he became my rock in the conservatory. We performed 5 shows the week of the Fourth of July and then he flew to Australia to be with his family for 6 weeks. While there he was involved in an ATV accident and would later pass away. Without Brannigan I had no desire to dance but I continued to go to the studio to hang out with friends.
Tonight my dance instructor is hanging up her ballet tights and tutus. She said that after 27 years she has lost too many principle dancers and so she's ready to end the summer program that I was proud to be a part of for 11 years. I've said, "You can take the dancer out of the ballroom but you can't take the love of music and dance out of the dancer." I will continue to dance for fun but I don't think I'll perform again.
Last December my gynecologist detected a small mass in my right breast so I was sent for a mammogram. The results weren't good so I had surgery in January to remove the mass. It came back noncancerous but I was told I have Atypical Hyperplasia which is a precancerous condition that can affect the breast cells. Since breast cancer runs in my family I will be closely monitored for any changes...
While recovering from breast surgery I kept complaining of a ringing in my ear, itching, drainage, etc. I react to any medication that is prescribed to me. If there is an adverse reaction I am probably going to experience it. So, we thought I was reacting to the pain killers. I see the doctor and they run some tests and put me on some sort of sound machine and they find out that I am hearing pitches 2 and 3 levels below normal. They tell me I have Cochlear Hyperacusis, which in laymen's terms is a sensitivity to sound/noise. That helped to explain why I tend to talk in a whisper, why doors opening and closing startle me, etc. And I had my first earache ever!
Through it all it seemed I had every reason to complain but I kept my faith. I used all the adversity in my life to proclaim the goodness of the Lord. I began telling everyone: "Life is hard but God is good AND if He brings you to it He will also bring you through it." I believe the Lord allowed me to go through all I did because He knew I would use it for His glory and honor. If I can make a difference in one person's life then I say, it is worth it all. If I can point one person to the cross then let me be the one.
How do you react when life throw's you a curve ball? Do you stand there and let it hit you in the head and then complain? Do you duck and then avoid the situation that was thrown your way or do you lift up your hand, catch it, and throw it back? That's what I want to do. I told someone that I am a participant in the game of life not a spectator. Win or lose, I will play to the end. Like Sandi Patty says, "In Heaven's eyes there are no losers..."
It's great to be back!