Just two months ago, my sweet, kind, genuine mom—my last parent—passed away. She had been terminally ill for years, and it finally took her. Ten years before that, my dad was killed by a drunk driver at 4 o’clock in the afternoon on a road he’d driven on just about daily for 25 years. Those are two of the worst things that have ever happened to me. And, unfortunately, there were a lot of hard things that happened in between.
I’ve endured lost dreams and failed expectations, life changing experiences ripped from my hands, break-ups that lead to changed living arrangements; almost being evicted; friends blowing up at me because they never communicated how I made them feel; navigating difficult people; exceptionally low revenue months in business; thousands of dollars of credit card debt; health scares; the unexpected death of a parent; and now, the agonizing slow burn and then death of a terminally ill parent.
But you know what? I’m still standing. That is resilience.
Unfortunately, adversity is inevitable. Sad, devastating, defeating situations are inevitable. As personal as each one may feel, it isn’t. It happens to us all, and how we handle it can make all the difference.
When my dad died, I was 24 and living in LA. I felt like I’d lost one of the only people in the world who loved me unconditionally…and I was right. I could have amped up my partying and gotten lost in the LA scene; I could’ve isolated myself from my mom and brother who were back in Texas, but I didn’t. I chose to quit drinking. I chose to continue putting myself in a good financial position, and I chose to move back home and expedite my financial goals.
Doing all of that allowed me to be in a position—and to have the experience I needed—to start and run my own business full-time. I firmly believe that getting through your current adversities will make you better equipped to handle the adversities that come to your next-level self.
I don’t want this to sound like toxic positivity, but despite bad things happening, there is always something good that can be found. Things could always be worse. It’s easy for people who haven’t been through much to say, “just be positive.” But I’m someone who has been through so much, and I still say: Try your hardest to power through. Try to stay on the positive path and don’t give in to lethal distractions. Easier said than done, I know, but it needs to be said. Even if you stray from the path every now and then, work to bring yourself back.
It is hard. I’m living in that hard time right now. But we are capable. My mom was “fine” on a Saturday, and by the following Friday she was dead. It happened so fast, right before my eyes. But I got to say goodbye. I got to say those final words, and I got to know that she heard me—just based on the little communicating she could do. It’s more than I got to have when my dad died, and for that, I’m grateful.
While losing both of my parents—the people who loved and supported me the most—is the worst thing that’s ever happened to me (I have no kids), I’m choosing to power through. I’m choosing faith. I’m choosing resilience. I’m choosing to lead an impactful, purposeful life.
Not every day is easy, but here are a few things that have helped me when going through my most challenging times:
- Walking to the sunrise every morning
- Daily devotionals, especially on grief and challenging times
- Listening to meditations and higher-power messages (I really liked this one)
- Journaling my thoughts and feelings
- Letting those close to me know when I’m having sad days
If you’re going through hard times, I’m praying for your courage to power through, wisdom to know there’s something good on the other side, and grace to allow yourself to get through the best you can.
How are you choosing to power through adversity—what does your resilience look like?Leave a Comment