The Second Act: Resiliancy

Resialncy Starting Over
Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

The first act of my life begins with low birth weight, chronic infections, broken bones, jealousy, betrayal and chronic illness. As my life progressed, I endured sexual assault, accidents with fatalities and domestic violence. [I want to say on the outset that the domestic violence was mutual. In my first marriage in no way will I lay blame on the other party as we both were willing participants.] My ex husband and I were broken individuals. We yelled, screamed, pushed and of course gave the silent treatment. I am not saying my first marriage was all bad. It wasn’t, we had loads of fun. We had a son and we did amazing things as a family. But our brokenness overloaded the marriage and it failed. This day we both have grown and made amends. We remain friends for our adult son and grandson. I have since remarried to the most amazing man and had many years of therapy, inner healing and deliverance. I even became a Therapist and Pastor. My life was the training ground and my formal education was the open door that became the exit that I walked out of to be ushered into a new era. This era is the second half of my life and it is titled Resiliency.

When we think “new era”, we think perfection. For me it isn’t. But that is ok. This is the second act of my life. This blog is about how to overcome, sharing the lessons learned and support from someone who has faced the challenges just like you. This blog will share how to build a firm foundation for continuing wholeness.

I have had many labels thrust upon me through the years. The two that stood out were CPTSD and obesity. These are both still a work in progress. Neither label is a lifetime diagnosis and CAN be overcome. The journey I am on is not for the faint of heart. It takes sheer grit, determination and a whole lot of faith. The first step is taking responsibility.

Photo by Luke Porter on Unsplash

After my divorce, I surveyed the desolate rubble of my former marriage and life. What I saw within was not pretty. I was hurt, angry and disillusioned. It seemed I had a lifetime of hurt and let downs. People on the outside thought I was kind but just had some troubles. They saw me as an intelligent person and a good friend to have. When the destructive part of me reared its ugly head, the consensus from my peers was that I just needed to straighten up. But, there was something more dark going on in the inside. I felt suicidal, tired and unlovable. I did self destructive things and hurt those who loved me deeply all because of the big gaping hole of pain. Finally, sick of myself and chronically suffering with health and suicidal feelings, I wanted to end my life. I made a few attempts but failed. After each failed attempt, those around me became angry. My pastor even refused to speak to me. I was dismissed from my leadership position and was avoided. For me, death was not meant to be. After my Divorce, I had a year long romance that was based on a rebound and, when that ended, I was left more broken than before. I thought, “If I had someone who loved me and that I could love back, that would solve everything”. There was just one problem. I did not know what love was. Once again, death courted and I had a choice. I chose to listen to a little spitfire named Dixie. Over the years we had spoken by email and phone but, After one particular phone call laden with self pity, she had enough. She told me in no uncertain terms that I needed to close my mouth and get an attitude of thankfulness. It was that phone call, and her voice, strengthened by the Holy Spirit, that kicked off the blinders.  I may have suffered many things but it was not about what evil had befallen me. It was about my response. You see, no one can take the steps to heal the wounds but you. It doesn’t seem fair that we have to suffer at the hands of another and then do the hard work of overcoming. But life is not fair. We have an enemy who wants to destroy us. Just like an athlete suffering from a sports injury, it is not the guy that tackled you that has to go through surgery, endure pre and post surgical pain and show up at physical therapy for rehabilitation. I had to shut up and show up. And, despite all the victories in the past, this is where I gained traction. I humbled myself and took responsibility for my actions. I owned up without excuse and my life radically changed.
In the second act of my life there are no excuses, just results. I truly believe that everything is a choice. We may have heavy influences to fight, but behind the influence still lies choice. It takes character building and gaining emotional intelligence to make those choices. Resiliency is taught in the home and some homes are being led by fractured individuals who have no coping skills of their own to pass down. So we get generational issues and stunted emotional intelligence. Journey with me and I will share my experiences and skills that I’ve learned. Together, we can build up that resiliency and strengthen our emotional IQ.

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