It was the perfect storm. Everything at work was going well, yet my personal life was a tsunami. Grief and heartbreak were playing ring-around-Layla.
In March of 2013, my mom had a massive stroke. We spent months working on her recovery, but God changed her assignment and made her my guardian angel in May of 2013.
I’d been married for a little over 6 years when my mom passed away. My now, ex-husband, struggled supporting me. He drilled in me that “big girls don’t cry” and didn’t provide a safe space for me to express my feelings. I felt like a caged bird. My would wanted to be free. I’ll talk more about this relationship in the next post, ‘I Never Measured Up!’
Let’s jump back on this timeline. It’s November of 2013 and my dad’s leukemia was “acting up.” I just started a new job and was trying to put my best foot forward. It was like project management at its finest, maneuvering through care plans, appointments, homes, people, data/reports, prototype planning, emotions, feelings and updating loved ones.
In December 2013, I filed for divorced and told my dad while we were at his chemo appointment. I wasn’t happy. My mom died at age 56, I was 32 years old, and vowed to live the next 24 years of my life MY WAY (just in case history repeats itself). At this point I’m hurt, I’m praying, and I’m leaning on family and friends to survive.
In February of 2014, I’m on a new project at work, my dad calls my work phone. He never calls. He’s out of breath. Says he’s being admitted to the hospital. I am scared, can’t call my mama. I hold in my tears. New project on deck, care for daddy.
During March of 2014, we celebrate my mama’s first heavenly birthday, and my daddy turns 70 here on earth. My divorce is final and my daddy tells me that wants to go home on hospice care. I recall telling LeAnne, one of my best friends, that I’ve been holding it together, I don’t look like what I’ve been through and when my daddy transitions I’m going to fall apart. The opposite happens when daddy passes at the end of March – project management again, there’s a memorial service to plan.
Count it, 3 deaths. My mom. My marriage. My dad.
I needed a break from heartbreak. JL, my therapist, tells me that I need to take time to organize my thoughts, my feelings, my expectations, and my pain. Find my new normal. Acknowledge my grief. Actually feel it, but DO NOT SIT IN IT! Keep moving. Keep swimming. Fight like hell and come out of it.
What I knew is that something amazing had to be in my future. What is it? How do I harvest it. No one experiences this level of heartbreak without a testimony, a breakthrough, a gift, a ministry…. A PURPOSE.
My advice to you is, embrace your Perfect Storm. I did. I am hoping that by sharing my storm, I can inspire you to keep going!