I had an unstable childhood. I had bronchitis and strep throat almost monthly, well into my adulthood. You can throw a bunch of pneumonias in there also, peppered too frequently throughout the years. Major surgery when I was 15 (on my actual birthday) to remove a tumor the size of a football, along with my right ovary and appendix. Several subsequent abdominal surgeries to remove cysts. Untwisting of my fallopian tube a few times. Cutting of nerves. I have been raped. Triple fusion on my neck that didn’t ever heal correctly. Abusive physical relationship where I was assaulted and bitten by a crazy man. Thyroid cancer and subsequent removal of my thyroid. Gaining over 100 pounds because of it and then taking 3 years to lose it. Went through the heartache of failed in-vitro twice and my embryos not making it on the day of implantation. Tonsils out as an adult. Pulmonary Emboli and DVT when I was 24. Breaking both ankles in a hiking accident. Having casts on both my legs for 12 weeks. Attacked by wasps while in the midst of a 6.7 magnitude earthquake. Being burglarized of everything in my home, even my food. Major concussion from flipping over while tubing in the river where I completely and literally lost my mind for a few weeks. Deep Vein Thrombosis and even worse Pulmonary emboli again just last month. Oh, and this weekend, I was stabbed by a freakin stingray in my foot and had to endure the unbelievable pain that the venom provides to its victims. There are many more “things” that have happened to me, but we don’t have all day to go over them. LOL.
Let’s just say, I can’t make this shit up! There’s a lot. At the age of 44, I feel like I have lived the life of a few people combined that are way further along than a mere 44 years.
All through it though, I have a smile on my face.
Some of these should have definitely killed me for sure. This girl is here for a reason.
I have also beaten all of these maladies. I not only beat them, I kicked their stupid asses. I don’t let them affect the life I live right now. I don’t blame them for anything other than making me who I am. I come from a place of overcoming, so my advice comes from actually going through things, not just guessing what it was like. I DID.
I have also summited Mt. Kilimanjaro, conquered Tour de Mont Blanc and scaled Mt. Whitney. I have travelled throughout the world. I have helped make a difference in many lives. I have risen to the top in my field and have been the focus in numerous write ups and accolades. I have mentored others and have learned to give freely to those who are in need. I have loved deeply. I have helped change lives. I made people laugh, cry, love and think. I have forgiven and I have BEEN forgiven. I have brought people to Christ.
Through it all, I would NOT change
Not even the stingray stab I got this weekend. If someone was supposed to have gotten stabbed, I am happy to have been one to take it versus Michael (it would have stopped him from being able to work) or his kiddos (so they didn’t have to endure the pain). I am glad it was me instead of any one of them. Michael was my hero over the weekend as he took care of me once again. He even carried me up 2 flights of stairs because I could not walk. We laughed so hard at the situation that I was crying (because, well, it was hilarious…we were like, “REALLY??”) and we made funny videos of our account of my newest adventure.
You see, it is through all of these adversities that I became who I am…and I really love my life. I love the woman I have become. It is through my difficulties that I found myself. I found God. I found peace. I found joy. I appreciate life so much more than many others. I don’t take things for granted. I savor my time. I smile a lot. I LIVE my life.
‘Cause I know that God has a plan for me.
He took all of these bad things that happened…the things that would crush or kill most people…and he used them for good for me. It is because I let Him. I didn’t give up. God gave me the strength to conquer them all…and for that I am grateful. God knew that I could take it…and I have with grace, love and understanding.
It is through my greatest sorrows that I have had the most joy. It is through my greatest “knock downs” that I have gotten up and become that much stronger. It is through my greatest struggles that I have had the most amazing victories.
I cannot imagine the person I would be if I hadn’t gone through all of these things. I am a better person for it.
It is ok to get knocked down by life’s circumstances…but the important thing- THE MOST IMPORTANT THING – is: What are you gonna do about it? Run and hide and be bitter? Angry? Have a pity party for yourself? Or face it head on, laugh, and know that this too, shall pass?
Would you rather live a life of “what if’s” or a life of “I went for it”? THAT is what diversity did for me. It propelled me to live the life of “I went for it” and dammit, it has been great.
There are so many people who just sit around and reminisce about things that they wish they could do or want to do. Then there are people who DO. Which one do you want to be?
You are fearfully and wonderfully made…so act like it.
We ALL have problems…so many people have had way worse things happen to them than I ever will. When these things happen, you have a choice…ONE choice…and that is your reaction.
You can choose to pause, smile and accept your present situation. Know that God has got you. Find peace in the fight.
Or you can give up and be defeated.
It is up to you.
Relaxing my poor stingray stabbed foot 😂 Some glue, tetanus shot and antibiotics and I am almost as good as new!
Thank you so much for reading today. I hope that I made you smile and think a little bit. Be sure to check out my Podcast on iTunes, Soundcloud and Stitcher —- Jen’s 10 G’s
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