"It is only in our darkest hours that we may discover the true strength of the brilliant light within ourselves, that can never, ever be dimmed." Zoe Zantamata
I am a 53 year old loving wife to my husband and mother to my two sons in their twenties. I am a dog owner; I have three: a yellow lab, Shiloh 12, a dachshund, Hudson 14, and last but definitely not least is my labradoodle, Zorro, still just a puppy in our house’s standards at the age of three. I also have one grand kitty. :) I love travel, books, camping, playing games, spending time in nature but most of all I love doing anything with my family. I grew up in a small town on the Colorado plains. I graduated from Colorado College and Hamline Law School. For most of my life I would probably be defined as a stay-at-home mom. I suffered 20 years with migraines and congenital pancreatitis. Three years ago I was given a pancreas transplant, which has been very helpful, but I still suffer persistent, severe, daily pain. Currently, I’m scratching and clawing my way back to life, two steps forward, one step back.
I struggled for years with depression have been drowned in the negative thinking that can come with my illness until one day there was a paradigm shift, my resiliency was really kicking in. My pain has in no way changed, but I can deal with it better - I think I finally found happiness and joy! My goal in writing this blog is to share my journey with others and provide support for anyone who is in pain or anyone who better wants to understand the pain condition. I want to try to do it in an uplifting way, though. Our brains are trained to look at the negative not the positive. It’s awfully hard sometimes not to turn off the negative when it is a fire siren screaming in your head YOU ARE IN PAIN! I’ve been trying very hard to turn down the screaming negative and let the positive in. I feel like I’ve been fighting for years without realizing that if I would let everything go I could live like a warrior.
And I want to share this with others.
I can’t tell my story without talking about trauma. Trauma affects almost all of us in different ways. Many of us suffer multiple traumas that can accumulate and continue to affect us in multiple ways. Trauma can be obvious like my pancreatitis or it can be less obvious like struggling with dental procedures, dealing with hurtful comments or being rejected. I will come right out and share with you that I have struggled with all these traumas and more. Some of my traumas I won’t share with you because, they aren’t mine alone to share. I want you to know when I speak of resilience, I came and still come from a place that is difficult, the same as you. I want you to know you are not alone. I have PTSD, I have struggled with depression, panic attacks, anxiety, perfectionism, and inability to enjoy life and even thoughts of suicide when my pain overwhelmed me.
Every trauma you have suffered or are suffering is terrible but resilience gives you the small ray of hope so that you may see there is some good that came from the trauma and cling to it with all you’ve got. Look at the courage it took you to get through the trauma, see yourself as the brave person that you are and give a gift to that person that you were and become the person you were meant to be.